Hello everyone, today I'm taking part in the Swell blog tour hosted by Candace's Book Blog. Today I will be sharing my review with you, but first here's a bit about the book.
Swell by Julie Rieman Duck
Publication date: 1st September 2012
My rating: 3.5 stars
When Christian Rusch plucks Beck Ionesco from the freshman ranks for himself, she’s tempted with parties, popularity, and love. But as the free-flowing booze that soaks his world seeps into her own, Beck begins using liquid courage as a way to ignore Christian’s dark moods… and cover her anxiety about his flirtatious friend Hillman.
However, when Christian breaks up with Beck, and Hillman makes a dangerous move, no amount of alcohol can stop the pain or keep her out of trouble. And just when it seems like she’s lost everything, Beck is partnered with Jesse Leary for an art project. After spending time with him, Beck realizes it’s more than a study date… and Christian’s not happy about it. Then again, Beck’s not sure she’s happy with him, either.
But only after plowing through a bottle of wine, a wild fight, and one guardrail that becomes Christian’s last call, does Beck admit to her problem and ask for help from the one whose life secretly parallels her own.
Swell turned out to a much darker gritty contemporary than I expected. Just looking at the gorgeous cover, the use of bright colours, gorgeous title and of course Jake Gyllenhaal lookalike model. I would immediately be lured in picking a copy if I saw this in a bookstore.
I think what it was the blurb gives you a small snippet about what this book is really about. The first time I read it over I think I focused in on the romance aspect immediately and overlooked the other prominent aspect. Rebecca isn’t part of the popular crowd at school, but that all changes at the school dance when school hotshot Christian spends most of the night dancing with her. Rebecca’s done everything in the past to get his attention, so it’s a little surprising when he decides to spend time with her, a relative nobody. Christian is slightly wasted during the whole dance, so Rebecca’s unsure whether it was the drink making the decisions for him or Christian really wanted to spend time with her. Rebecca decides the next day she’s going to make the first move, she doesn’t want to be fobbed off any longer. What results is a lovely relationship, Rebecca’s never felt this loved in her life, she’s got a guy who truly cares about her and he’s one of the most popular guys in school bringing her social status up in the process. Despite getting a few warnings earlier on from Christian’s friends and her best friend Jemma to take a step back from their relationship, they seem to have progressed to where they are really quickly Rebecca decides to ignore them and the ringing alarm bells going off in her head. Before she knows it, her relationship which started off as her being treated like a queen starts quickly spiralling totally out of control.
Like I mentioned earlier I didn’t realise that drinking would feature as a prominent part of Swell. Rebecca started off a lot more concerned with her relationship with Christian, but soon drinking over took everything. I naturally assumed that Rebecca was an older school student as she was hanging out with Christian a senior, so I was completely shocked when I realised she was only 15 years old. She eventually started letting the drink take over her life; she didn’t realise that all the drinking she did with Christian was making her relationship and life more toxic rather than as a means of being able to escape her problems. Also the extent she went to get her hands on little dribs and drabs was horrifying. But I highly praise Duck as she was not afraid to show the realistic consequences that many teens have to face when they become addicted to drinking.
Swell was a real eye opener of a read, it ventures down a dark path and really emphasises the issues of drinking today. I definitely recommend picking Swell up if you’re in the mood for a dark gritty read.
Thank you to Candace for letting me be a part of this blog tour. There are still some great stops part of this tour that you can still check out here.