|AUTHOR: Allison van Diepen|
PUBLICATION DATE: November 25, 2014
GENRE: contemporary romance; new adult
GIVE IT TO: upper-HS
IF THIS BOOK WERE FOOD, IT WOULD BE: gum--it starts out really good but kind of loses flavor after awhile
REVIEW: With its superhero-with-a-secret-identity vibe, On the Edge is one of the more creative urban romances I've read. "Lobo" is a gang member who keeps his identity hidden as he saves pretty girls in danger whenever necessary. I love that Lobo is less like a gang member and more like a modern-day superhero. His agenda is greater than your typical territorial fights with a rival gang. While Lobo's true identity is pretty obvious right from the start, it was fun watching Maddie discover it.
I liked Maddie's voice and that most of her problems mirror those of normal teen girls. The best friend drama gets old quickly. Maddie's bestie is one of the most irritating best friends I've ever seen--she's pouty, possessive, picks arguments, and absolutely refuses to back down, even when she is dead wrong. She attempts to turn all their other friends against Maddie, too, with mixed results. I was really glad that though Maddie mends her fences with this silly girl, she is cautious about it and moves on to college without the crazy bestie or any regrets.
Insta-love. You know I hate it. Sadly, On the Edge has it. I really need to do a post on the insta-love craze I'm seeing in a lot of YA lately. Authors, if you're going to include a "first love" situation, please take the time to make it believable.
THE BOTTOM LINE: Despite the insta-love, I enjoyed this unique urban romance. Give it to fans of Perfect Chemistry.
STATUS IN MY LIBRARY: It's too mature for middle school.
READALIKES: Perfect Chemistry series (Elkeles), Snitch (van Diepen)
- Overall: 3/5
- Creativity: 4/5
- Characters: 2/5--major points off for the crazy bestie
- Engrossing: 3/5--insta-love
- Writing: 4/5
- Appeal to teens: 4/5
- Appropriate length to tell the story: 4/5
- Language: includes multiple instances of sh-- and the F-bomb
- Sexuality: sex trafficking is major plot point; intense kissing
- Violence: gang violence, organized crime, threats, murder
- Drugs/Alcohol: sex slaves are force-fed drugs to keep them obedient; no graphic details
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