Cracked Up To Be by Courtney Summers
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin
Published December 23rd, 2008
Genres: Contemporary, Realistic Fiction, YA
Buy: Book Depository | Amazon
When “Perfect” Parker Fadley starts drinking at school and failing her classes, all of St. Peter’s High goes on alert. How has the cheerleading captain, girlfriend of the most popular guy in school, consummate teacher’s pet, and future valedictorian fallen so far from grace?
Parker doesn’t want to talk about it. She’d just like to be left alone, to disappear, to be ignored. But her parents have placed her on suicide watch and her conselors are demanding the truth. Worse, there’s a nice guy falling in love with her and he’s making her feel things again when she’d really rather not be feeling anything at all.
Nobody would have guessed she’d turn out like this. But nobody knows the truth.
Something horrible has happened, and it just might be her fault.
What an intense amazing book. I’ve wanted to read one of the author’s books for a while and this one really appealed to me, and I have to say I’m really surprised at how much I loved it.
I do tend to go for intense themes and books that really make my heart squeeze, and this was for sure a hit for that. It’s not the type of book that makes you cry, because at the beginning you are kind of lost, but it does cause a ton of emotions. And at the end, I did kinda feel some tears running. It’s sad but it’s more than that, it’s just so realistic, and deep…
This book is about Parker, the perfect kid, popular, with straight As and dating the most popular guy in the school. Until she wasn’t anymore. She is now the classic mean girl. Her life got a 360º turn and she is now a rude, moody and sarcastic person who lives her life screwing with others and pushing everyone away. Everyone wants to know what happened but she doesn’t wanna talk about it. She tried to commit suicide and did everything she could to be alone, but when Jake transfers to her school, things start slowly changing.
Our main character is for sure not the most likable, but I loved reading about her. I really wanted to understand her, and sometimes that wasn’t the easiest of things but I really felt pulled towards her. I actually liked her better than another character that is actually not that bad but I couldn’t get along with. I just really got some connection with her, and I know not everyone will feel that way but I just did…
I really liked Jake too and how persistent and friendly he was. He was just such a good person and I did feel a bit bad for him… I liked how he slowly made his way into Parker’s life and how much that helped. There are not that many persons like him and I really respected and liked him for that. As well as Chris that although very different, I still really liked. He is a bit more childish but for sure a good friend.
There’s a bit of a romance in it, after all, we are talking about high school, but it’s not overpowering the novel at all, it’s kinda just a side part. And I actually really liked it, it was just the perfect amount of it.
This is a really strong, realistic and well… messed up story and it touches themes like rape, addiction, self-harm, death, and manipulation. So be aware of that. It is quite intense… But it will also make you think twice about other people. Everyone has their own lives and everything we see on the outside doesn’t really tell the whole story. We got to see everything from the mean girl perspective and it was done exceptionally because we get to see what goes through her head and why she is like that.
It’s not a book for everyone but if you have a similar taste to mine, you will love it and I would highly recommend. I think it’s an extremely important book that will make you rethink your life in a lot of ways, or so it did to me. It’s amazing, heart-breaking and incredibly well written.
Have you read this book? What did you think of it? Let’s discuss it in the comments below!