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Release Date: March 25, 2014
Publisher: Swoon Romance
Source: YA Bound Tours in exchange for an honest review
Buy It: Amazon | B&N
Description from Goodreads:
Sixteen-year-old Andi is tired of being a second-class sibling to perfect sister Laina. The only thing Andi’s sure she has going for her is her awesome hair. And even that is eclipsed by Laina's perfect everything else.
When Andi’s crush asks her to fix him up with Laina, Andi decides enough is enough, and devises a twelve-step program to wrangle the spotlight away from Laina and get the guy.
Step 1: Admit she’s powerless to change her perfect sister, and accept that her life really, really sucks.
Step 4: Make a list of her good qualities. She MUST have more than just great hair, right?
Step 7: Demand attention for more than just the way she screws things up.
When a stolen kiss from her crush ends in disaster, Andi realizes that her twelve-step program isn’t working. Her prince isn’t as charming as she'd hoped, and the spotlight she’s been trying to steal isn’t the one she wants.
As Laina’s flawless façade begins to crumble, the sisters work together to find a spotlight big enough for both to shine.
I read this book in one sitting. I mean, it's not like this is an extraordinarily long book or anything, but still. I sat down and I read this whole thing in just a few hours. The biggest reason this is important? I was in the middle of reading Sentinel by Jennifer L. Armentrout at the time. If you know me, you know that reading a different book while I could be reading one of hers is kind of a big deal. But Twelve Steps was so worth it!
I adore this premise. I'm the third child myself, so I can kind of get where Andi's coming from. Not completely, since I don't have any sisters, but still. The idea of a twelve step program to get past feeling inferior was awesome. My only dilemma is that I wish the twelve steps had more to do with the story. Don't get me wrong--there are twelve steps in this story. But they don't pertain to what was going on as much as I'd hoped. Which isn't a huge deal, since I still very much enjoyed this novel.
Andi was such a lively protagonist. I actually had a great time sticking around inside her head throughout this story. I kind of wished she would stop being so gosh darn stubborn about some certain things...but overall, I was cool with her. She had a personality that I just loved.
Andi's sister was actually really friendly. I'd imagined her big sister to be terrible to her, since she had sibling issues, but they got along pretty well. I didn't like Laina as much as I liked Andi, but I didn't really have a problem with her, either. Well, except for her complete obliviousness for Jared's feelings. I mean, COME ON. Open your eyes. Her blindness to that reality did get annoying. But still, she wasn't too bad. A great sister, for sure.
Speaking of Jared...yeah, I'm not the biggest fan of him. I started out thinking I might heart him, but nope. He was kind of a jerk to Andi. I'm not okay with that, no matter how conflicted he was over Laina. And Shane...I know he has nothing to do with Andi's romantic relationships, but I must say that he seemed sweet, but I liked him even less than I liked Jared. I actually wanted to slap Shane a couple times. So yeah, I totally prefer Jared and, even though he wasn't great to Andi, I think he and Laina are perfect.
And then there is Dave. I was on his team from the moment we met the guy. Why? Because he was nice. And that little boy was like "that's the girl you told my mom about" and I legit was like AWWWW. He had me from that point on, and he totally deserved it. He was so nice, and sweet, and can I just have him, please? I'm kind of mad at Andi for taking so long to get on the Dave train, officially, but since I like Andi, I'll let it slide.
Overall, Twelve Steps is all kinds of cute. It's sweet and fun and the perfect story to pick up when you just want to read something to make you feel good and happy. I loved these characters, and their story was just as adorable as the cover suggests. I am definitely looking forward to checking out whatever Veronica Bartles has coming our way next.
As the second of eight children and the mother of four, Veronica Bartles is no stranger to the ups and downs of sibling relationships. (She was sandwiched between the gorgeous-and-insanely-popular older sister and the too-adorable-for-words younger sister.) She uses this insight to write stories about siblings who mostly love each other, even while they’re driving one another crazy. When she isn’t writing or getting lost in the pages of her newest favorite book, Veronica enjoys knitting fabulous bags and jewelry out of recycled plastic bags and old VHS tapes, sky diving (though she hasn’t actually tried that yet), and inventing the world’s most delectable cookie recipes. TWELVE STEPS is Veronica Bartles's first novel.