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3.68  ·  Rating details ·  1,415 ratings  ·  186 reviews
What if your worst enemy turned out to be the best friend you ever had?

Meet Brooke: Popular, powerful and hating every minute of it, she’s the “It” girl at Douglas High in Lake Champion, Minnesota. Her real ambition? Using her operatic mezzo as a ticket back to NYC, where her family lived before her dad ran off with an up and coming male movie star.

Now meet Kathryn: An ove
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published February 15th 2011 by HarperTeen
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Average rating 3.68  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,415 ratings  ·  186 reviews

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Wendy Darling
2.5 stars I liked the first half of this book quite a lot. Kathryn and Brooke used to be best friends until something drove them apart--but what was it? The story starts off in senior year, told in alternating chapters between both girls' points of view, then eventually goes back and forth between junior and senior years. This framework might sound complicated, but it actually works just fine, and the author does a good job of writing different voices for both girls' narratives. The reader gets ...more
I can’t exactly tell you what I expected this book to be like. It simply caught my interest a few months back when I read the synopsis. I love books about music, and the friendship/rivalry issue gave it an extra touch. So I bought it without reading many reviews – which is pretty unusual for me. I normally always try to make sure I’ll like a book before spending money on it.

So – what should or shouldn’t you expect from it?

1) You should not expect romance, swoon-worthy kisses and the like. It’s n
Overall I liked it. Well what do we have?
Read Review at Bewitched Bookworms
We have two girls that couldn't be any more different, the one rich, beautiful and popular. The other one although beautiful, she's a loner has only one friend and has a very poor family. Yet, both share a passion for music and signing! They meet in Junior year and realize that although so differently they could be real and true friends.

The story is told in alternating POV which I found extremely interesting, you got i
Sep 28, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Original post -

Wow. I did not expect to love Rival as much as I did. I was pretty hesitant about starting it because it sounded like there was going to be very little romance and kissing, and mainly just about the history between the two girls.

Which is mostly true. I mean, that is the point of the book, I think. That there’s more to being a teenage girl than boys. There’s pressure and stress and even friendships are hard to maintain. I thought Rival did an
Princess Bookie
Jun 09, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read2010
My Thoughts: I did not know what I was going into as I started this. Backstabbers? Check. Hot guys?Check. Best friends turned rivals? Check. Music? Check. High school? Check. Guy best friend? Check. As you can clearly see this book had it all and was everything I was looking for. We are introduced to Kathryn and Brooke. Brooke was always Queen B and popular while Kathryn just kept to herself and was a loner. That is until Brooke befriends her and introduces her to her clique and the world of pop ...more
Savannah (Books With Bite)
Dec 02, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This is one heck of a book. From the start, the book, it played on like beautiful music to my ears never letting go. It flowed on and on playing me like a guitar. Brooke and Katheryn were best friends then rivals though a misunderstanding. Will both girls learn to forgive? Or will the music that they play forever ring in their ears.

I loved the writing and the plot of this story. Ms. Wealer not only introduce us to music but she intertwine it with her writing. With each turn of the page, her writ
Feb 23, 2011 rated it really liked it
In alternating narratives, Sara Bennett Wealer tells the story of two talented teens--Kathryn and Brooke. Both girls are exceptional singers and, though they used to be very close, they have a rivalry that has spiraled out of control.

Brooke seems to have it all. She is the most popular girl in her class, she has talent, money, and people generally look to her to decide who's cool and who's not. Of course, life is not as perfect as it seems. Brooke is lonely and desperately wants her absent fathe
Melanie Goodman
Brooke and Kathryn were best friends, but a misunderstanding causes them to become rivals at the end of their junior year of high school. When senior year begins, both girls are entered into the same prestigious singing competition. The love of music that once united them now only serves to tear them farther apart. Brooke and Kathryn see the competition as a way out; Brooke wants to use it as a path to a career as a professional singer, and Kathryn needs the scholarship money to attend college. ...more
Jul 13, 2010 rated it really liked it
The Short of It:

Rival is a story about two girls who used to be friends and now are, pretty much, bitter rivals. With realistic teen characters, great dialog, and an ending the lets both main characters shine, it is a must read for 2011.
***Rating: 4.5 stars***

The Long of It:

Brooke is the queen bee of Douglas High; she loves music and is in choir even though it isn’t “cool.” Kathryn is the social outcast, also in choir (a soprano), and she used to be Brooke’s best friend. How did these two become
Nov 27, 2010 rated it it was amazing
No matter which side of the fence you’re on, the grass always appears greener on the other side.

For Kathryn Pease, her one-time best friend Brooke Dempsey has everything. She’s popular, confident and stylish. She has money. She lived in New York. She’s been to the Met. She wouldn’t be stuck in Minnesota after high school. For someone like Brooke there are endless possibilities. Brooke isn’t hanging all her hopes on winning the Blackmore competition like she is.

For Brooke, Kathryn is the lucky on
Cass -  Words on Paper
Loved it.

I loved the girls. I hated the girls. I wanted to know the girls more and more. I liked that they had hobbies outside of music, how their lives don't revolve around guys or popularity or shopping, etc. That there are secrets and mystery. We are only privvy to some of the facts as Wealer weaves the story from the past to the present.

Rival kept me up until 4 am this morning, until I finally gave in to my stomach and had to go to sleep. Later, at 8 am, I was rudely awoken and despite being
Jun 07, 2014 added it
Dissonance: a harsh sounding of notes that produces a feeling of tension and unrest

When I opened my copy of Rival, this piece of text hit me like a shocking opening note sung forte in a quiet auditorium. I could already feel the pressure, the tension, the ruthless rivalry rushing adrenaline-fast through my system, and I knew I was in for a dramatic competition of a story.

Rival took no time in proving me right. In alternating present and flashback sections, it immediately drags readers into the c
Nov 28, 2010 rated it liked it
Music is the core of Kathryn and Brooke’s friendship throughout high school. Through the teenage drama that often severs even the closest of friendships, music keeps the two girls together. Kathryn is known as a “loner”; Brooke, the wealthy and popular “it” type of girl. What would someone so popular want to have anything to do with one from the bottom of the high school food chain? Such a difference in lifestyles has a major influence on the decisions and choices that Brook and Kathryn make thr ...more
Feb 20, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: four-star-books
I read this for the debut author challenge. I was in the mood to read a contemperary realistic fiction novel. I've been going pretty heavy on the fantasy and dysotopian here lately. So I went onto The Story Siren's blog to see what new debut novels were coming out in the month of February in the YA genre. Most of the ones listed were fantasy... Rival was one of the few realistic novels on the list.

I was immediately turned off and intrigued (at the same time if that's possible) by the synopsis a
Alexa Greening
Sep 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
Personal Response- “Rival” by Sara Bennett Wealer is a great book in my opinion. I feel that people would be able to relate to this book in many different ways. Friends go through these things, just like Brooke and Kathryn did. This book was a lot of fun to read and I would read it again.

Plot- The beginning starts off with Brooke, a student who attends Douglas High School. She wants to become a singer, and goes to Honors Choir too. Brooke’s biggest rival is Kathryn. Kathryn also attends Douglas
Dec 29, 2010 rated it liked it
Kathryn and Brooke are fierce rivals in their senior year of high school. They both sing in choir and are shoe-ins to win the prestigious Blackmore Young Artsists award. Oh yeah, and they hate each other. But it wasn't always like this. During their junior year, they had been inseparable at times. Then something terrible happened and the hatred has been thick ever since. As the stress of the upcoming contest gets heavier, both girls begin to re-evaluate what is truly important to them.

Two books
Bridgid Gallagher
Jan 10, 2011 rated it liked it
I read this as a part of the YA book club's Fall Reading Challenge, to fulfill the book with an artistic teen requirement.

A quick synopsis: Brooke and Kathryn were friends. They are the two best singers in their school's choir, and are both devoted to their music. But that was before...Now, Brooke hates Kathryn, and Brooke has no qualms about using her popularity to make Kathryn suffer.

Things I liked:

This book was very honest. I expected a black and white, predictable story of cool girl versus l
Dec 11, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: teen-books
Rival is filled with rivalry, which is a given, gossip, lying, romance, and more! Told in varying points of view, Rival tells the story of Kathryn, a shy, quiet teen, and Brooke, a rich, popular teen. These teen girls come from different worlds but are brought together by their love of music.

I initially thought this book would be focused more on music and singing than anything else, which made me not too thrilled to read it. However, I quickly realized that the music competition and rivalry was
Nov 22, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own
Beautifully written, Wealer has brought us a novel quite different from what's out there. The passion for the music is so amazing. Rival has brought me back to a time that I miss, a time that only the glory that music can bring.

Brooke Dempsey seems to have it easy. She seems to have it all. She has all the friends you can imagine. She has the looks, money, and any guy she wants. She also had the ability to bring down Kathryn and ruin her name throughout the school all because she has the power.
Jun 12, 2011 rated it it was amazing
First off, the cover. I love the cover, and it's not just any random flower, it's a red flower, a red lily <3 I love the fonts in the book, the elegance and those swilry things. The set out, the design....gorgeous, so beautiful.

The story, the writing, the book in general? Amazing! I loved it! I mean, wow. WOW (but the writing is easy so it might not give you the feeling of satisfaction). Everything clicked and came together at the end. Just-Just, WOW!! My new favourite book! The themes :D the ch
Jun 06, 2011 rated it really liked it
I first found this book while I was looking for a good book to read in a bookstore near our house. I saw the cover and it's kinda interesting. Read the prologue and it's just fantastic. As a teenager, I could actually relate to Kathryn, because she's like, good in singing, but she also wants to fit in. Then she met Brooke, who's like, the most popular a-lister in school and boom, for their love of music, they clicked. They became friends, but of course, friends have fights. They fought for a boy ...more
Brittany Durrant
May 17, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: already-red
This book was absolutely amazing, and it was different from any other book I red so far. "Rival" is about these two girls; Brooke and Kathryn who are seniors and are enemies since homecoming of Junior year. The story is told in present time, but there are chapters where it goes back to junior year.
I would recommend this book to anyone who is interested in music,because music plays a big role in this book.
I was disappointed in this one...the beginning was very dated (lolcats, sigh) and the dialogue was often forced, and by the end the characters had made decisions that were not fitting to their personalities. It got to the point where I was confused as to who was who when reading from their own POV.
Brianne Durrant
Mar 25, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Although the ending was not what I expected, I really enjoyed this book. "Rival" is about two girls named Kaythryn and Brooke who used to be best friends but are now enemies. They are both after one goal and that's the choir competition which is a huge shot for a college scholarship.
I would recommend this book to Freshman and up because it's an easy book to understand.
Nov 23, 2010 rated it really liked it
just finished it and full review to come. Friendships and music , beautiful story
Apr 06, 2011 rated it liked it
On page 82 I said to myself "I know exactly what will happen in this book". And I was right. There were a few good parts though.
Kylie Abbey
Feb 19, 2018 rated it did not like it
Personal Opinion:
I absolutely hated this book. It was way too girly and the suspense was terrible. The book never gave you a straight answer throughout, and only at the end revealed SOME information. Overall, this book was cheesy and dumb.

Plot Summary:
Kathryn and Brooke were both friends until a falling out when they were Juniors. Now Seniors, as a prestigious competition looms in their future the tension builds. Brooke cannot stand Kathryn, and etc. More drama and stuff happens as Kathryn susp
Bonnie (A Backwards Story)
High school is where memories are made, be they good or bad. Whether you’re popular or an outcast, you remember that time of your life. Sara Bennett Wealer’s debut novel, Rival, recaptures high school through the eyes of two girls who couldn’t be more different...or more alike. Kathryn and Brooke are two seniors competing for the same prestigious music scholarship. Kathryn is a soprano with a light, airy voice, while Brooke is an alto, her sound rich and deep. Brooke is rich and one of the most ...more
I feel like this is a book I might have gotten more out of back when I was a teen; it captures the insecurities and petty jealousies of those years quite well. But now, I mostly just wanted to shake the main characters and tell them how idiotic they were being.
Deanna Perkins
Aug 11, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I received this book when I attended the author event our public library hosted for Sara Bennett Wealer. I didn’t know much about her debut book, Rival, until I had heard they were having the event. I am not disappointed at all and after reading it I feel very lucky that I got this book for free and signed by Sara herself.

Now onto the book…where to start…

It’s so hard to decide where to start with this review. I absolutely loved this book. The way Sara set up the story was genius! Instead of reg
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I grew up in Manhattan, Kansas ("The Little Apple"), where I sang with the show choir and wrote for my high school newspaper. I majored in voice at the University of Kansas before deciding I had no business trying to make a living as an opera singing. I now make my living as an author, producer and copywriter. I'm represented by Holly Root at Root Literary.

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