Sara's Reviews > Rock On

Rock On by Denise Vega
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Aug 03, 12

bookshelves: 2012, young-adult
Read from August 02 to 03, 2012

Orion has a dream of being a rock star, but in the meantime, he's playing with his high school band and gearing up for the Battle of the Bands against other local groups. Music is his life and he gets completely lost in it, which is a nice distraction from what's going on at home. His older brother, once the golden boy who could do no wrong, has moved back home after dropping out of college and aggravates Orion at every opportunity, seeming determined to steal everything good out of Orion's life.

This book was a lot of fun to read. I liked the balance between Orion's family life and his music life; they mixed together well, and kept the plot moving forward because it never seemed stuck in one of these two parts. Orion and his band mates played off each other well, with fun conversations and inside jokes. I definitely got the feeling that they'd known each other for years and were just that comfortable together. One of his friends got a little irritating at times because she seemed to be constantly interfering, wanting to know everything, even though no one in the book seemed to care.

The relationship between Orion and his older brother was very well portrayed. There were flashbacks to the brothers in the years past, giving a nice glance at the way things used to be between them; my only complaint about these flashbacks is that they were told in third-person while the rest of the book was in first-person, and it really threw off the flow. I liked the fact that things weren't constantly terrible between the two of them and that things didn't magically become perfect again all of a sudden. Their relationship felt natural and realistic because of this.

I'm not quite sure who the target audience of the book is, since the narration felt young and girlish (the cover seems targeted more toward girls as well), yet the characters are in high school and a male character provides the narration. Readers who like music and fun stories with underlying family tensions will probably enjoy this the most.
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