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Kill All Happies by Rachel Cohn
Age range: 16+ | Hardcover: 288 pages | Publisher: Disney-Hyperion (May 2, 2017)
About the Book
Last Call at Happies! Tonight, 8 P.M. Senior Class Only! Please with the Shhhh .
This is it. Graduation. And Vic Navarro is throwing the most epic party Rancho Soldado has ever seen. She’s going to pull off the most memorable good-bye ever for her best friends, give Happies-the kitschy restaurant that is her desert town’s claim to fame—a proper send-off into bankruptcy, and oh yes, hook up with her delicious crush, Jake Zavala-Kim. She only needs to keep the whole thing a secret so that her archnemesis, Miss Ann Thrope, Rancho Soldado’s nightmare Town Councilwoman and high school Economics teacher, doesn’t get Vic tossed in jail.
With the music thumping, alcohol flowing, bodies mashing, and Thrope nowhere to be seen, Vic’s party is a raging success. That is, until Happies fans start arriving in droves to say goodbye, and storm the deserted theme park behind the restaurant. Suddenly what was a small graduation bash is more like Coachella on steroids with a side of RASmatazz pie. The night is so not going as planned. And maybe that’s the best plan of all.
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My Thoughts on Kill All Happies
As a brand new high school graduate, Vic wants to have a major send-off party to say goodbye to her town, her favorite restaurant (Happies), her friends, and her high school days. The trick is throwing the party for the entire senior class without alerting the local madwoman and economics teacher — Ann Thrope.
I loved the idea behind this novel — giant party with your friends before heading off to conquer life, all while thwarting your arch-nemesis. The characters are diverse and authentic and the setting has a nostalgic, small town feel. The book is full of memories made at Happies and around the town of Racho Soldado. It felt like one of those eighties movies like Sixteen Candles or The Breakfast Club. And I really liked the rivalry between the teenagers and Thrope.
On the downside, there is so much cursing in the book that it’s hard to focus on the story. It’s over the top, with f-bombs all over the place. Most of the language was unnecessary and distracting. And for a book that crams so much into two days, there is a surprising number of slow spots. A large portion of the book is dedicated to Vic’s lusting over her best friend’s brother, which was both funny and gross in equal turns.
This book feels more New Adult than Young Adult, and maybe that’s what it was intended to be. If you’re an NA reader, then you’ll probably like this book.
Content: Language (f-bombs), innuendo, underage drinking, and drug use.
Source: The publisher sent me an Advanced Reader Copy for review consideration.
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