April 13, 2014

Being Hartley by Allison Rushby (ARC review)

Title: Being Hartley
Author: Allison Rushby
Release date: November 1, 2013
Publisher: Patchwork Press
Genre: YA contemporary, Romance
Buy on: Amazon |

Fifteen-year-old Thea Wallis was born to entertain. Her mother, Oscar winning actress Cassie Hartley, thinks differently and has kept her daughter out of the spotlight since day one. Coming from showbiz royalty, it hasn't been easy to go unnoticed, but mismatched surnames, a family home in Tasmania and a low-key scriptwriter father has made this possible.

Just like her cousin Rory on the hugely popular TV show Saturday Morning Dance, Thea loves to dance. She learns the show's routines off by heart each week, despite her mother's attempts to convince her that dentistry would be a far more fulfilling career choice.

However, when Rory goes off the rails in LA, Thea's mother is suddenly left with no choice at all – Rory needs them and to LA they must go. Within forty-eight hours, Thea finds herself a long way from Tasmania and living her dream – on the road to Las Vegas with the Saturday Morning Dance team.

It doesn't take long before Thea's talents are discovered and she's offered everything she's ever wanted on a plate, including the dance partner she's had a crush on forever. But, as her mother has always told her, Hollywood dreams come at a price. Thea soon realizes she will have to work out just how much she's willing to pay. And, ultimately, discover her own way to be Hartley.

Throughout this book there was one, consistent thought running through my head: 'This feels like reading a Disney Original movie.' And to be honest, it is not in a positive way.

The story is mostly about Thea. She is a member of the famous Hartley family, but due to over-protectiveness of her mother, not many know who she is and that she exists. She loves dancing and would love to dance on the TV show Saturday Morning Dance. Because her cousin Rory, a dancer on SMD, got into trouble, Thea and her mother come along on their Las Vegas tour and that is the first time Thea is thrown into the celebrity life.

The story has one main theme and it has to do with being famous. Rory is being pushed into the spotlight, even though she doesn't want it anymore. She wants out, but her father tells her to just keep going. With Thea, it is the other way around. She wants to be in the spotlight, but her mother is really against it. Mostly, because as a child Thea's mother got pushed into the spotlight and her life is the last thing she wants for her child. So you can see we have two very controlling parents (who are also brother and sister and grew up in a controlling environment).

Throughout the story Thea learns more about the life of a celebrity and it's time for her to think about what she really wants.

The story was well written; the writing isn't the problem of the book at all. The story is overall just a bit cliché and predictable (though lucky there are a couple of small plot twists that makes it at least a bit interesting). I guess all of you have watched a Disney Original movie. You pretty much now what will happen and how the story will progress. You know the storyline is actually quite bad, but it is enjoyable. For me, this book missed a bit of the enjoyable part. It took me a while to get through and I also just hoped it was a bit more about Thea and her quest (since in my opinion Rory overtook the story at certain points).

But hey, there is a cute love interest for Thea so that is a bonus point.

No comments:

Post a Comment


Template by BloggerCandy.com