Lara's Reviews > The Queen of Kentucky

The Queen of Kentucky by Alecia Whitaker
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Mar 31, 12

Read from March 27 to 31, 2012

Ricki Jo Winstead has gone to the tiny Catholic elementary school in her small Kentucky town all of her life. She is now going into the 9th grade at the local high school and wants to make a big change. No longer does she want to be called Ricki Jo; Ericka sounds more sophisticated. No longer does she want to be on the fringes of what’s going on; she wants to be popular, become a cheerleader, and have a popular boyfriend. Her best friend and closest neighbor, Luke, thinks she’s just fine the way she is and doesn’t like who “Ericka” is turning into, but Ricki Jo has more important things on her mind, like her Spanish partner, Wolf, who is cruel to her when they’re in a large group but slightly nicer and maybe even flirty when it’s just the two of them. There’s also the “Fab Four” who say they want her in their exclusive group, but then they go and have a party without her. Just when it seems as though she is getting everything she wanted out of her high school experience, Ricki Jo has to decide who she really is and what she really wants.

The cover is fantastic, but the book let me down. There were many times that I wanted to smack Ricki Jo and give her a good talking to. The way she let Wolf treat her was abominable, and yet she still liked him and flirted with him and tried to get him to ask her to the Homecoming dance. It was sickening. No girl, either in real life or in fiction, should let a boy treat her as badly as Wolf treated Ricki Jo. The way she let her friends talk her into doing things that she both didn’t want to do and knew that she shouldn’t do was also sickening. Some may say that this is a realistic portrayal of 14 year olds, and that is probably true, but I want my characters to show some backbone, do the right thing, and not let other people walk all over them. By the end of the book, Ricki Jo does get this, but it is a long, painful journey.
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