Title: The Dirt
Author: Lori Culwell
Age Group: Teens
# of Pages: 205
My Rating: 2.5/5
Living with a rich and famous family would make life so much more awesome, right? Not for Lucy Whitley. Her family has been in the tabloids on and off, especially since her mother disappeared many years ago, taking one of her sisters with her. Just when Lucy's father is about to remarried and she's about to go to boarding school in Europe to escape her crazy life for once and for all, an unexpected guest shows up and ruins the wedding! Will her dream of leaving her life now ever come true?
Three years ago, I reviewed Lori's first novel Hollywood Carwash, which I highly enjoyed and still recommend to this day (click the title to check out my in-depth review). So when I was asked personally by Lori to do a review for her latest novel (and her first in the YA world), I was honoured. Hollywood Carwash gave me a lasting impression, so I was hoping The Dirt would give me a similar effect as well. However, The Dirt was a take-it-or-leave-it YA novel that had many similar cliches amongst the stories within its genre.
With a setting where the main character is surrounded by the rich and beautiful, there would always be that one mean pretty girl. In this novel, it's Lucy's older sister Sloane, who is in charge of a group called the PG (what it stand for is unknown) and dominates the entire school. I'm used to reading about that it-girl making the protagonist's life a living hell, but the fact that they are related was too much for me. If you are not heavy on realism like I am, you could pass this by. I found it unnatural for Sloane to treat her sister the way she did. And I won't get into the unrealistic cliche of this one high school girl "controlling" the school and the people around her.
The pace and story of the novel wasn't picking up too quickly for me to keep wondering what was going to happen next. I have to admit, the climax was definitely unexpected. I felt that there was so much more that could've been done in the novel to take it to the next level, considering how it ended.
I recommend this novel to anyone who enjoys stories that revolves around the rich and the popular and doesn't mind reading something that doesn't require a lot of thinking.
Review copy provided by Lori Culwell.
4 hours ago