As soon as I finished reading the free sample, I knew I had to download and read the whole story. I'm glad I did. I really enjoyed reading this story....moreAs soon as I finished reading the free sample, I knew I had to download and read the whole story. I'm glad I did. I really enjoyed reading this story. Kole and Gage were well-developed, likable characters. The dialogue was great--laugh out loud funny in many parts of the story. Every scene kept me reading on to the next. The author tells a very full and compelling story in a short amount of space. The supporting characters are three dimensional, too. Kole's friend, Lynn, is both loyal and hilarious. Everything about this story will draw you in, and when you finish it, you'll only want more. I can't wait to read this author's next story. (less)
First of all, let me just say how glad I am this is a series. I look forward to returning to Black Snow, Colorado over and over again to find out what...moreFirst of all, let me just say how glad I am this is a series. I look forward to returning to Black Snow, Colorado over and over again to find out what Katie and her friends are up to.
This Is Our Town is the first novel in the Tainted Perfection series. It follows the Inner Circle during the last few days of summer vacation before high school starts up again. The Inner Circle is the name Katie Durance gives to her group of closest friends: Danny Kelly (Katie’s stepbrother, and you better not call him her brother), Chelsey Bennett (neighbor and Danny’s girlfriend), Rogue Bennett (Chelsey’s brother who’s hopelessly and secretly in love--but is it really a secret?--with Katie), and Brett Winchester (works at Katie’s mom’s stables and goes to a rival high school). Each group member has his/her own problems. One of the best things about the book is the complicated relationships between these characters and the intense, at times heartbreaking loyalty and love they feel toward each other. Feelings that go so far they become dangerous at times.
Katie is getting ready for a horse show, the Steamboat Springs Summer Classic, and a lot is on the line for her. She’s dealing with the abuse she suffers at the hands of her stepfather and the stress that abuse puts on her relationship with Danny. The show means a lot to her because it is Katie’s chance to finally show her apathetic mother that she’s not worthless the way her mother seems to think she is. However, Katie might not be able to compete after Thomas’s abusive behavior goes too far one night.
Danny is frustrated that he can’t protect Katie from his father, Thomas, the way he wants to. He wants to teach Thomas a lesson, and shortly after he sets a plan in motion to do so, Social Services starts investigating the Thomas-Kelly household. If they find the proof they’re looking for, Danny and Katie might be separated forever.
Chelsey is worried about her cheerleader try-outs in addition to her worries about Katie and Danny. She’s been practicing hard all summer, but unfortunately one of the people who plays a part in whether or not Chelsey makes the team is Katie’s mortal enemy. Chelsey seems to be caught in the middle of that particular cheerleader’s revenge plot. Not only that, but she’s trying to figure out what’s going on with Brett, who almost kissed her even though he knows that she’s Danny’s girlfriend.
Brett is trying to figure out what’s going on with himself. After he almost kisses Chelsey, mistaking her for Alli, he tells his parents that he needs to go back into therapy. He still can’t get over the fact that his girlfriend, Alli, left him. The fact that nothing he does brings Alli back to him is breaking him down mentally.
This Is Our Town is filled with emotions, relatable characters that come to life as soon as you meet them, and plot twists that will keep you turning the pages. The setting and details drew me into the world that Gittinger created. I certainly didn’t see the end coming, and it definitely made for a satisfying read. It made me look forward to Book Two. I can’t wait to see what happens when the Inner Circle crew starts high school—the last year for Rogue and Brett, who are seniors and the first year for the others, who are freshmen.(less)