Monday, September 22, 2014

Book Review: Paradise Rules by Jimmy Gleacher

Published: July 12th, 2011
Publisher: Gallery Books
Read from September 13th to 17th, 2014
Synopsis from Goodreads:
It’s only a week into summer break and already seventeen-year-old Gates has . . .
a) Hustled millionaires on the golf course
b) Tried to stop his mother from having a(nother) nervous breakdown
c) Promised to lose his virginity with his girlfriend, Mel . . . which would be great if he hadn’t already lost it to his forty-year-old godmother
d) Almost killed a man
Yeah, Gates has a lot of secrets, but he’s determined to keep his heart true. When he’s not swinging golf clubs like a pro, he reads pulp fiction to old folks at the retirement home. And despite his occasional slip-ups—drinking before noon and sneaking glimpses through his sexy godmother’s open negligees—Gates only has eyes for Mel. But she knows he’s hiding something, and she’s beginning to lose her patience.
Just as Gates is about to spill his shameful secrets, he gets tangled up in a golf club scandal that jeopardizes his dreams of a normal life. He’s never been a fighter, but this time he finally pushes back at the world—which could have been a breakthrough but turns into an epic fail. Probably because Gates fights back dirty. Now his life is on the verge of ruin, and he’s got no one to turn to for help.
Or so he thinks. Because what Gates is about to discover might hit him with the most amazing shock of his life.


I won this book in a giveaway several years ago, and I had no idea what it was about until I started reading (or maybe I did and had just forgotten). I wasn't expecting the book to deal with such a heavy and serious topic as statutory rape.

I really just thought this book was okay. My biggest reason for that is just that I couldn't get into the story at all. The story made me uncomfortable, and that could have been a good thing considering the subject matter. However, I think a lot of those feelings were because I didn't think the issue with Gate's godmother was handled well. At the ending especially, it all left a bad taste in my mouth because I didn't think it was handled the way it should have been. At times the story seemed to get scarily close to glorifying it, and I was constantly worried that it would end that way. In the end, it wasn't really glorified, but it was never resolved either, which left me feeling very frustrated.

Beyond that though, I just wasn't into the story at all. It could have been worse, but I probably wouldn't recommend this book to anyone.

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