Review ARC | Real Life Scandals: Admission

Disclaimer: Bear in mind that some of the links in this post are affiliate links and if you go through them to make a purchase I will earn a little commission at no extra cost from your end. 😊

I would to thank PRH Global for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts expressed are my personal opinion.

Description Summary | Despite having one of the most clueless MCs in YA, it is sadly a grim reflection to perhaps a big portion of the privileged rich kids. Makes a fantastic discussion book.

Rating

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Book Summary | (Skip to Review)

Chloe Berringer, Wood Valley senior, Beverly Hills rich kid and the daughter of B-list celebrity and sit com star Missy from the show My Dad, My Pops, and Me is determined to finish off senior year with a flourish by finally graduating and heading to her dream college.

All that comes crashing down when the FBI arrives at Chloe’s home one startling morning, and Chloe’s life is altered completely.

Now thrown into the middle of a nationwide scandal (perhaps even worldwide) Chloe finds herself written out as the tyrannical villain in this cover story. And even though she may not have been directly responsible for the crime, her defined as being an “accomplice” forces her to reconcile and reexamine harsh truths of not only her crime but of her self as well.

This is a fictional account of the college admissions scandal that has erupted back in 2019.

Review
Review

Review

“Money makes you weak because it tricks you into thinking that you’re strong”.

This is exactly what this book is about. Of course I’m pretty sure the whole world knew about the admissions scandal because it does shed a garish light on privilege, corruption, and integrity of these so called “prestigious” institutions. Honestly this is one of the most important discussion books for teens, and is one book I would definitely recommend to be taught in high schools. There are so many themes that pop up that include, the education system, standardized testing, racism, entitlement, and of course wealth privilege.

Story

The story was a great spin on the real life scandal, and in the book we had a look at alternating chapters of pre-scandal Chloe and post scandal Chloe. I think this was a really unique way to see the shifting narratives, and contrary to other readers I didn’t feel like it was confusing or exhausting.

I wasn’t a fan of the romance though; it’s like having jello for dessert when you wanted that fudgy gooey chocolate brownie. I know this doesn’t make sense but roll with me 😂 It was an underselling in short. Levi was so vanilla compared to other YA love interests. (Okay I’ll stop with the food references).

Chloe

I cannot though with Chloe freaking Berringer. She is one of the most clueless human beings in existence it’s terrifyngly alarming. Oh yeah and she’s extremely lazy. And that’s excuse enough to not put in effort in her school work. Jeez I can’t with her I just can’t. Glad to know that the influencer rich kids L.A scene is not for me; lol what a nightmare truly.

If you think I was overrating her cluelessness just look at some of her dialogue from the book:

Mom is not going to jail for twenty years, you idiots. It was only a college application!”

“I don’t let myself dwell on it too much, anyway, because I don’t like the way it makes me feel something uncomfortable and unfamiliar; an uncertainty about my parents’ judgement”.

“Apparently,( it’s) a crime. That’s news to me”.

“Honestly I don’t even understand how my mom broke the law. Shady is different from illegal.”

The author tried really hard to make us readers sympathize with her, but ultimately I couldn’t. I may have felt sorry but whatever consequence and punishments that came out of this is justified and she deserves it. However making her the sole pariah I feel distracts that this is a systematic issue and instead turns it into another “celebrity scandal”. That’s what many tabloids tried to do with the original true story.

Isla (side character shout out!)

I loved Isla, and I was so happy that the author included someone who was fearless and righteous as she is. She said a lot of stuff that I personally wanted to say to Chloe and her parents, so what a relief to see her deliver the harsh truths of their crimes.

Do I recommend? Despite me not really clicking with the book, I 100% think it should still be read.

Date published: December 1, 2020.


Published by jawahirthebookworm

Hello I’m Jawahir the bookworm, a lost twenty-something year old bookish blogger who enjoys her books with a cup of strong coffee; milk no sugar no cream.

8 thoughts on “Review ARC | Real Life Scandals: Admission

  1. ahh i loved this review!! i also loved your dessert references, because it helped me understand EXACTLY what you felt – i mean i wouldn’t like if my gooey, fudgy browny was replaced by 5-minute packet jelll-o! i hate books where i can’t stand the main character, but i did get a copy of this, and i am still intrigued by the story, so i think i’m going to check it out!! lovely review, jawahir!! 💗✨

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Books like this are big reminders I am not the target audience for YA. I think I know too much about college admissions to be offended or surprised by the bug scandal or to want to read a book about it. I mean, even people who don’t directly cheat get into college because of money or who their family is, and it is almost ridiculous schools suggest academic merit is what gets you in. But while I am jaded about this, it does not hit home for me like a teen applying to college or a current college student who feels they were cheated out of a spot at a higher ranked school they were rejected from.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I completely understand your point of view. I agree too, I keep seeing a lot of teens and young adults realize that true value does not equal to the kind of degree you have. And this scandal just confirmed a lot of their suspicions. As much of an optimist I am, I don’t think this issue will be resolved fully, rather this is an indicator into an even deeper issue that stems wayyyy back. Eh, the world’s not fair unfortunately.

      Like

  3. I don’t know. It feels…too soon for this? I agree that it’s a systemic issue and part of that is because there are technically legal ways to buy your way into a college, like having your parents donate large sums of money to the school. Having a book about one girl who realizes her parents were wrong to doctor her college application isn’t really meaningful when the admissions process is still so broken. People like Chloe wouldn’t be able to say they “didn’t know” paying money to increase their chances of admission was wrong if colleges wouldn’t let them buy their way in via other avenues. So do I want to read a “feel good” story about a rich girl who realizes other people don’t have the resources to buy their way in? Not really. The rest of us already know.

    Liked by 1 person

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