BOOK TOUR REVIEW & GIVEAWAY: Canary by Rachele Alpine
by Rachele Alpine
Canary is told in a mix of prose and verse.
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.
MY THOUGHTS: 3 OUT OF 5 FLEURS DE LIS
Kate and her brother start a new prestigious school after the death of their mother. Their father is the new basketball coach, and everyone knows there’s nothing more important to Beacon than basketball. Kate’s life is changed quickly, and she becomes popular and dates one of the hottest players on the team. But things are never as they seem, and it takes a while but Kate begins to learn that sugar coating things that happen will get you nowhere in life.
While I do enjoy a book that gets into difficult social issues for teens, this one was a bit of a bore for me. Kate wasn’t a particularly interesting character, and as the book went on and more things began happening to her, I just wanted to SCREAM at her. I mean I understand that this was what she thought she’d always wanted, but there’s just a line where enough is enough. I, as the reader, got clues very early on that the basketball players were less than trustworthy; I couldn’t believe it took Kate so long to catch on. Or maybe she did, and just wanted to ride things out for as long as they would go.
The best part of the book was Kate relationship with her brother, Brett, so I was especially disheartened when that became threatened. Brett is older and jaded when it comes to the people and environment of Beacon, and had the good sense to not associate himself with anyone Kate did. I am hoping that Kate and Brett’s relationship will stay close, because they both really need each other.
I actually really did like the prose sections too; I felt that was when Kate was being the most honest with herself. It was so hard to watch and see that she KNEW certain things were bad for her, and she just couldn’t find the guts to distance herself from them. It was also really, really hard to read the parts where Kate and her father interacted, especially after she told the truth about what happened to her.
Since the synopsis mentions that Kate gets assaulted, I don’t think I’m ruining anything by putting that in this review–but this actually doesn’t happen until well past the halfway part of the book. In that regard, it was a very slow read.
I was disappointed in the way Kate decided to release the truth–I wish she would have fought, told an adult at school, confronted those who were gossiping behind her back, ANYTHING, but I guess she did it in the best way she knew how. Hopefully things get much better for Kate and her family.
About the Author
Rachele Alpine is a lover of sushi, fake mustaches, and Michael Jackson. One of her first jobs was at a library, but it didn’t last long, because all she did was hide in the third-floor stacks and read. Now she’s a little more careful about when and where she indulges her reading habit. By day she’s a high school English teacher, and by night she writes with the companionship of the world’s cutest dog, Radley, a big cup of coffee, and a full bag of gummy peaches. Rachele lives with her husband in Cleveland, Ohio, but dreams of moving back to Boston, the city she fell in love with while attending graduate school there.
You can win a print copy of Canary or swag.