Friday, May 24, 2013

Book Review: Canary by Rachele Alpine

By Rachele Alpine

Published: August 1, 2013
Publisher: Medallion Press
Age Demographic: YA Contemporary
Pages: 400

Staying quiet will destroy her, but speaking up will destroy everyone.

Kate Franklin’s life changes for the better when her dad lands a job at Beacon Prep, an elite private school with one of the best basketball teams in the state. She begins to date a player on the team and quickly gets caught up in a world of idolatry and entitlement, learning that there are perks to being an athlete.

But those perks also come with a price. Another player takes his power too far and Kate is assaulted at a party. Although she knows she should speak out, her dad’s vehemently against it and so, like a canary sent into a mine to test toxicity levels and protect miners, Kate alone breathes the poisonous secrets to protect her dad and the team. The world that Kate was once welcomed into is now her worst enemy, and she must decide whether to stay silent or expose the corruption, destroying her father’s career and bringing down a town’s heroes.

Canary is told in a mix of prose and verse.

To Purchase Canary visit: Amazon & Barnes&Noble


Canary, is one of those contemporary stand alone young adult novels, that was powerful in such a way that it drug my emotions all of the place. Written in a mixture of prose and verse, it is one of those novels where the story beneath the telling, has a way of getting up underneath your skin and irritating. Irritating in a good way, to clarify. In some ways it reminded me of Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson. In light of recent events gone on in the news lately, I think this is a story that was much needed to be told, and it was written in such a realistic and relatable way that it is easy to connect with the characters in the story.

Powerful and dripping with emotion, this is a story will command your attention from the beginning. There's more than one issue going on, at the heart of this story. Rachele Alpine, tackles them both with a sensitivity and vulnerability that will leave your heart aching for Kate, her home life, the ordeal she goes through, and her brother. This is a beautifully written and truly compelling look at the inside of a girl who has to battle a long journey of self-discovery, in order to become stronger within her own skin to make the right choice for herself. Kate is a beautiful portrait of a realistic heroine that is to be admired for all of her courageous grace and beauty.

It is a hard book to get through, with so many different ways of looking at things such as enlisting in the military, the incident where Kate is assaulted, the fall out of the decision from that, among so many other things. However, I have to applaud Rachele Apline, for writing it in such a way that it was beautifully captivating and emotionally compelling. It will definitely hold your attention and parts of it may very well make you angry. There are just so many conflicting emotions throughout this novel, that make it so wonderfully realistic and definitely worth a read. I would definitely recommend giving it a chance.

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I'm a high school English teacher by day, MFA student by night and YA writer during any time in between.
I like to write with a big cup of coffee, good music and my puppy by my side.

My debut novel CANARY will be published in August 2013 by Medallion Press. Hot diggity dog! This makes me very happy!

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