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3.89 of 5 stars 3.89  ·  rating details  ·  5,358 ratings  ·  758 reviews
Love, tragedy, and mystery converge in this compelling novel from “an author to watch” (Booklist).

Seventeen-year-old Parker Frost has never taken the road less traveled. Valedictorian and quintessential good girl, she’s about to graduate high school without ever having kissed her crush or broken the rules. So when fate drops a clue in her lap—one that might be the key to u...more
Hardcover, 278 pages
Published May 14th 2013 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers (first published May 13th 2013)
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Community Reviews

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Wendy Darling
Coming of age stories are so hard to get right, particularly in realistic fiction. I have no idea what it's like to develop supernatural vampire powers (darn it!), but I do know what it's like to navigate the tricky road to adulthood. So while I generally read more paranormal fiction or sci fi, it's always a pleasure to come across a contemporary YA book that I really connect with.

This was my first book by Jessi Kirby, but I'm now very eager to read Moonglass, and anything else she comes up with...more
Emily May

“But as much as we wish it were different, the truth is, our worlds are sometimes balanced on choices we make and secrets we keep.”

Four and a half stars. Because, really, I think this is a four-star read but there are five-star tears running down my face even now, almost a full day after I finished reading the final page. This book is categorised as young adult but, oddly, I think Golden is everything I used to expect from the new adult genre before I knew better. I think it is a beautiful, poi...more
"[...] sometimes we meet our destiny on the road we take to avoid it."

No words of mine can even come close to portraying the stunning beauty and finesse that takes up each and every page of Jessi Kirby's magnificent Golden. Running through my mind since reading the very last page of Golden to now, as I am writing these inevitably inadequate words, are an endless amount of positive adjectives that could be used to describe Golden truthfully--it's breathtaking, it's lovely, it's striking and stun...more
Actual rating: 3.5 stars

This is a beautiful coming of age story. Mixed with romance, friendship, and family.

Just like the 5th wave, this is one of my most anticipated books of the year. With all those praises out there, I was pretty sure this was going to turn out amazing. It was, a pretty nice read. Although I have to admit, I might have been slightly disappointed. I was expecting to be really blown away, but anyhow, this book actually made me think. It made me look back on my life and reflect....more
Another wonderful, emotional story that took my breath away!

Jessi Kirby doesn’t play with words, she plays with emotions. Her stories don’t have complicate plots, but subtle ones. Her prose is so beautiful that it leaves you breathless, the edge of her words cuts deep into your soul.. You can never have enough of her stories and I can never put into words how much I love everything written by her.

I don’t know if she puts a lot of effort into writing, or if it cames to her naturally, but it real...more
This was such a beautiful read! I literally had goosebumps when I turned the last page. It's one of those all encompassing stories that leaves you to ponder your own past experiences, your own hopes and dreams - past, present, and future.

Do you often read back through your diaries or journals and reminisce on your high school days? In Golden, one teacher gives all his students just that opportunity. The class assignment is to fill a journal with everything you're hoping for yourself, then in 10...more
Very rarely do I come across novels that make me slow down, catch my breath, and actually reflect. Usually, I’m too caught up in the rush of the next book that I fly through my current read, type out a review, and put it behind me. Granted, I remember my favorite titles fondly, discuss and recommend them often, but either than the twist of my gut or intense swooning while reading, my love affair with the novel has ended almost as quickly as it began. Golden and I, however, are on an extended hon...more
Ash Wednesday

This story is about a girl reading about another girl's story.

And you are reading a review about a story about a girl reading about another girl's story.

Immediately after reading Golden my impulse was to give it a 4. Despite the sluggish start, I found myself captivated by a good and tautly drawn mystery in the middle wrapped in the simplicity of the character's thoughts and voices. My problem lay in the execution of the last act of the story, right when the mystery gets solved when so...more
Faye, la Patata
An ARC was provided in exchange for an honest review. This did not influence my review in any way. Thanks S&S, I love you, too.

Honestly, I'm finding it difficult to review this book. I went into this novel with absolutely no expectations, but with a faint hope that I'd be able to finally find a gem deserving of 5 stars, a hope that would quench my thirst for a masterpiece. That was, fortunately, answered. I turned the last page of Golden with feelings so conflicted, but also satisfied, as I'...more
You guys are going to love this one! 1 part mystery, 2 parts love story, 10 parts awesome. :-)
My reaction to the cover and synopsis:


Hurry up, May!!!
Initial reaction: Right now this is a tentative rating, but this is probably going to end up being 2 or 2.5 stars overall. On the level of the writing and the use of Robert Frost's poems, the overarching intent of the narrative were wonderful.

But I had issues with this story on so many levels. I don't know if I can articulate them fully at the moment, but I'll try to do so after sleeping on it for a night.

Full review:

"When darkness is no less
Than everything you built become undone,
There's no fig
May 14, 2013 Angie rated it 1 of 5 stars
Shelves: ya
Originally reviewed here @ Angieville

I feel like contemporary YA and I are going through a rough patch. We're having trouble seeing eye to eye. We seem to be going in different directions. We don't want the same things anymore. Take your pick. I realize this is likely just an unfortunate string of mismatches, but after a little while it's hard not to take it personally, you know? So much good chatter surrounded today's release of Jessi Kirby's GOLDEN. Not having ready Kirby's previous two novels...more
Golden was a gorgeous novel that delves into the aspect of first loves and choices. Shane Cruz and Julianna Farnetti have always been looked up to as the golden couple in Summit Lakes. Their lives were taken too early on the night of their graduation. They’re honoured by a billboard with a photo of them as soon as you leave town and a scholarship to give youngsters a chance on what they missed out on. But when Parker is set the task of posting out diaries from students 10 years ago, she discover...more
Aug 01, 2013 Nafiza rated it 2 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2013
Let it be known that I am not one for realistic fiction unless it’s Australian in which case I am quite keen on it. Let it also be known that I, when I do read North American realistic fiction, I tend to be superpicky and critical about certain things because that’s who I am and that’s what I do.

That said and before I move into the review proper, let’s discuss the hype that has been surrounding this book. Okay, I don’t know when this review will be posted but it has been topping everyone’s chart...more
**This is an ARC review-- any quotes and excerpts included come from an unfinished copy and therefore may change before the final print**

Guys, Golden is a prime example of why I absolutely adore Contemporary Young Adult literature. I think I am definitely jumping on the Jessi Kirby bandwagon a little late. I have heard really wonderful things about both Moonglass and In Honor, but Golden is my first experience with her writing. And I was BLOWN away. If her earlier works are anything like her lat...more
A copy of Golden was provided to me by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers/Edelweiss for review purposes.

"Tell me, what do you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life."

Parker Frost has always lived her life with the future in mind. She has always studied hard and received good grades in hopes that she can attend Stanford after graduation and become a doctor. There has never been an alternate path for her, no detours or side streets to take, she has only had the one goal. When she...more
Roza Dimka
"I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence,
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference."

One thing I have to admit if nothing else is that Jessi Kirby has chosen the most awesome poetry for this book. Being a literature student I've read a little Robert Frost but his poetry never hit me as hard as it did while reading it in this book. Maybe because then I could actually see a story panning out and I couldn't help...more
There is absolutely nothing wrong with 'Golden'. It's a nice little story that has some beautiful writing and a pretty and tidy plot about a girl who is growing up and learning about herself and wanting to become independent and take some chances. There's some doomed romance there and some scenes straight out of "The Notebook" and similar Nicholas Sparks tales.

Unfortunately, it's not for me. I mean, I understand Parker. I understand disappointed, strict parents who want the best for you, but th...more
Kath S

I loved this book. It was beautiful, awesome and reflective and I just can’t put in words how I felt reading it.

I’ll post my review soon.

This was me, reading the last chapters:




Apr 06, 2013 Ira rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: arcs

"But it seems to me that the experiences that stay with you, the things that you'll always remember, aren't the ones you can force, or go looking for. I've always thought of those things as the ones that somehow find you."

This was one powerful and heartbreaking read. The writing is impeccable and captivating that I didn't notice I was burning through page after page until I was on the end. This book has the right mix of heartache, mystery, heart-pounding revelations, hope and romance. I love Pa...more
Mai- *♥is back to Team Darkling ♥ *

Carpe Fuckin' Diem.

This book is unbelievable. It made me think hard about my past and made my weigh the choices I made in my entire life. Golden is a wonderful story about a girl who's too uptight with life. Parker Frost is your typical goody two shoes, with valedictorian status, a waiting scholarship and a bunch of etiquette.

I love Parker's character since she reminds me a lot of my high school self. I was brought up on a prim and proper household and education is very important. Whenever...more
Kendare Blake
Mar 11, 2013 Kendare Blake marked it as to-read
Stay golden, Ponyboy. Stay golden. Must read this.
Trish Doller
curious little beastie

Absolutely brilliant. An emotional story with a valuable and relatable message. Or messages, even, because I got more than one. This review technically won't be much of a review at all but just me talking about all the things this book made me think about and feel.

The one I relate to the most is of how we can sometimes plan something out that we're sure will happen, even if it seems too much like a fantasy, but most of the time things just don't work out the way you plan them to because a certa...more
Jenni Arndt
At this point in the year I am so ready to just throw in the towel and declare myself a contemporary fangirl. I have been having no luck with dystopians, paranormals or even post apocalyptic stories but every single time I pick up a contemporary I am sucked in and emotional. Those are the best kinds of reads, aren’t they? GOLDEN is no exception, I absolutely adored this book. From the beautiful writing to the amazing characters and the magical inclusion of great poetry.

Parker Frost is an overac...more
Diana J.
Review can also be found here.

This book blew my mind away! Before I picked this book up I was going through a huge disappointment phase with YA Contemporary genre. All the books I had been reading were so generic and all so the same and I picked Golden without many expectations, to be honest. But WOW! This turned out to be one of the best books I've ever read, not only this year, but ever. It was so flawless and beautiful and heartbreaking and like nothing I had read before. Now, of course I've...more
Jen Ryland
Jan 29, 2013 Jen Ryland added it
Shelves: atw-tour
I've LOVED this author's two prior books and was excited to get the chance to read a bound manuscript of Golden courtesy of Around the World ARC tours.

Main character Parker is a descendent of Robert Frost and the daughter of a stalled poet. Driven and rule-following, Parker suddenly begins to question all her life choices when a teacher asks her to mail back a set of journals written by his students a decade before. Parker realizes one of the journals was written by Julianna, a girl killed with...more
Stuti (Turmeric isn't your friend. It will fly your ship
Jun 01, 2013 Stuti (Turmeric isn't your friend. It will fly your ship rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: fans of on the jellicoe road
There are so many books coming out in a year, so many of the young adult, so many readers of the young adult genre. The number intimidates me. I, myself, am one of them. We read these books and we read more and mostly, we move on. I don't want to move on from this book; I don't want this to be just a blip of 288 pages and 2 days in my life. I'd like to come back, coast through this again and take away everything I did and didn't the first time.

Because this is just that kind of novel. It's a beau...more
Jessica (Lovin' Los Libros)
I am still reeling from the amazingness that is this book. I gave it 5 stars on GR and I don't want to start another book yet because I just want to bask in the afterglow of this one.

My only complaint? I wish it had come out 5 years ago, so I could have maybe taken some of the life lessons Parker learned and applied it to my own life.

In my opinion, I think every high school girl should read this before they graduate.

Parker, the story's protagonist is a girl who has always played by the rules...more
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YA Buddy Readers'...: Golden by Jessi Kirby - Restarting March 13th, 2014 81 41 Mar 17, 2014 01:58PM  
Book BFFs: Questions for Jessi Kirby 8 19 Aug 01, 2013 12:13PM  
Book BFFs: Golden Chapters 25-End Discussion 12 26 Jul 30, 2013 05:45PM  
Book BFFs: Golden Chapters 16-24 Discussion 9 24 Jul 23, 2013 05:21AM  
Book BFFs: Golden Chapter 9-15 Discussion 13 14 Jul 16, 2013 04:23PM  
Book BFFs: Golden Chapters 1-8 Discussion 32 18 Jul 10, 2013 05:47PM  
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Jessi Kirby is a former English teacher and librarian. She lives in Orange County, CA with her husband and two kids, where she writes stories and runs the beach every day. Well, almost every day.

You can contact Jessi at
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“One often meets her destiny on the road she takes to avoid it.” 79 likes
“But sometimes life gives us those rare moments where we do see chance as it’s happening. And in those moments, we have a choice. And sometimes we have to take a risk. And it’s scary. It makes us vulnerable. But I know now it’s worth it.” 68 likes
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