Monday, September 26, 2011

Review: If I Tell by Janet Gurtler

Title: If I Tell
Author: Janet Gurtler
Published: October 1st 2011 by Sourcebooks Fire
Stand alone novel
My rating: 3.5 rounds to 4 stars
If I Tell
Goodreads Summary:

Jasmine Evans knows one thing for sure... people make mistakes. After all, she is one. Jaz is the result of a onenight stand between a black football player and a blonde princess. Having a young mother who didn't raise her, a father who wants nothing to do with her and living in a small-minded town where she's never fit in hasn't been easy. But she's been surviving. Until she sees her mom's new boyfriend making out with her own best friend. When do you forgive people for being human or give up on them forever?


Racquel's thoughts:
I didn't really have any opinions or expectation when going into this book. To prove to you how true that is: somehow I read the summary wrong and thought that instead of Jasmine- the MC- catching her mom's boyfriend- Simon- with her bestfriend I though that she caught her MOM with her bestfriend and so I was completely lost at the beginning and when I read the summary again I had an OHHHHH! moment.

Which leads me to, I LOVE WHEN THIS HAPPENS! When I have ZERO expectations about a book and it blows me away (because If I Tell certainly did!) it makes me so happy! It’s the best surprise ever! Sometimes I even hate reading reviews because they get me too excited about a book and excitement ONLY leads to disappointment in my experience.

Jasmine is biracial which is nothing special but if you live in a town where you're either fully black or fully white and your well, the biracial sheep you're subjected to a few not so nice remarks and those remarks definitely scarred Jasmine making her turn to her guitar and one girl as a bestfriend so what do you do when one of those sources betrays you in the worst way possible?

Race and ethnicity is big part of the book, it’s why Jasmine has many problems (even if some of them she created because she was so pitiful) and is so insecure because she believes she doesn’t fit in because she’s not fully black or fully white and no one quite understands her. The whole ethnicity insecurity plays out perfectly I think, it might be the 21st century but I have no doubt in mind people still discriminate and it’s nice to see a book that deals with this. Now I just pick up a book and assume the characters are white so this was nice refresher.

After what she witness, Jasmine basically has no one but Jackson. He comes into town and plays shining knight and along with Ashley (a girl Jasmine gets to become close friends with) they help Jasmine open her eyes about her insecurities and how to get past them and how to deal and accept her ethnicity.

I love how great the romance between Jackson and Jasmine turned out to be, it didn’t happen over the spam of a paragraph but it literally blossomed as I kept reading. All the issues Jasmine is going though are also well handled and patched up reasonably (I’m being vague but I refuse to give anything away!) and the characters are AWESOME! Ashley is blunt and hilarious, Jasmine’s grandma is the best, Jackson is so sweet and amazing I wanted to hug him and even Simon who made a mistake, redeemed himself! BUT I can’t deny how at some parts I hated Jasmine for her ignorance.

Throughout most of the book Jasmine was a pity party, frustrating and a little immature. I mean I understood she’s very insecure and hated how people judged her on how she looks how but wouldn’t you think that would make her not judge people? But she totally judged Jackson and said some very harsh things when all he ever did to her was show her kindness and compassion but she hit him where it hurts: dissed him about his race. But he forgave her, which I think was too easy!! Jasmine couldn’t forgive Lacey (her bestfriend) or Simon all the way but got Jackson forgiveness handed on a silver platter, which was very hypocritical and unfair and I can’t forget how she just assumed the worst of Simon without really trying to figure out what happened or getting his opinion! She went as far as punching him when just like Jackson, all he did was be nice to her!

Besides that, I enjoyed If I Tell. It was a surprise delight that I think everyone should pick up, it deals well with issues of getting over the crap life throws you and handling them the best way fit plus the book has a very cute romance:D

My Rating: 3.5 hearts that I will round to 4
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First Line:
"My heart raced as I stumbled down the step."
Teaser:
"I don't want to wreck your diet. I know older guys like you need to watch what they eat."

He eyeballed his chicken sandwich and unwrapped it, ignoring my dig."
Favorite line:
"In line behind Jackson, an annoyingly gorgeous girl with long blond hair was eyeing his butt. I couldn't blame her. It was a butt worth staring at."


*Thank to Sourcebooks Fire for providing me a copy of this book to review*

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