Publisher: Atom

Review: Cuckoo by Keren David

Posted August 24, 2016 by chooseyabooks in Uncategorized / 0 Comments

I received this book for free from Atom in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Cuckoo by Keren DavidTitle: Cuckoo
Author: Keren David
Publication Date: August 4th 2016
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary
Pages: 352
Format: eARC
Source: Atom

He's a household name . . . without a home
Jake is an actor, a household name thanks to his role on the UK's most popular soap. But his character went upstairs to his bedroom six months ago and never came down again, and now Jake is facing an uncertain future. Add to that his dad's anger issues, the family's precarious finances and the demands of a severely autistic brother; Jake's home feels like a powder keg waiting to explode. It's easier to spend nights on friends' sofas and futons, but what happens when you feel like a cuckoo in every nest?
Cuckoo is a novel about the roles we play when we don't fit in anywhere, and finding unlikely solace when home is the least welcoming place of al

Review: Cuckoo drew me in from the concept and I had a strong feeling this would be a great read for me.  Karen David tells the story of Jake,  a teenage actor who used to be on a popular soap, until it got cancelled.  Now he’s setting the story straight over events before the cancellation via a vlog.

I liked the format of the novel being told through vlog transcripts and comments.  Keren David utilises a quite restrictive narrative device to great effect. Even in the comments there are small subplots and stories that really add to the book.

I devoured Cuckoo and didn’t want to put it down. Jake really came off the page and I felt for his problems. I hadn’t personally seen explored in YA before in this way but Karen David looks at teenage homelessness without judgement. On the surface, Jake is not a character one would consider at risk of homelessness, however this is an issue that can affect anybody. Cuckoo really highlights how easy it is to end up in such a scary situation and I read the book desperate for him to be resolve his issues.

David writes Jake so well and he’s a fascinating character. It’s clear Jake’s recollection and narration is not unbiased and friends helping him with the videos may come off more favourably than those not helping.  Similarly, there are clear flaws and things Jake does that highlight his own bias. That said, Cuckoo utilises this and Jake’s unreliability with the comments providing some subtext for some characters.

Cuckoo is a compelling, important and innovatively told YA novel I highly recommend. Fans of contemporary YA should find a lot to enjoy in this book.


Review: The Doubt Factory by Paolo Bacigalupi

Review: The Doubt Factory by Paolo Bacigalupi

Review: I’d heard a lot of positive things about Paolo Bacigalupi’s YA novels however hadn’t had the chance to really delve into his books, so when Hayley at EdPR offered me a review copy of The Doubt Factory I was thrilled. The Doubt Factory tackles a subject I’ve not really seen explored in YA: PR and the power of a cover-up or spin. It specifically looks at companies which are employed by large corporations or powerful people to essentially create doubt; hence the doubt factory. While this may not sound a particularly exciting subject for YA, Bacigalupi frames it like a Hollywood thriller. Alix is a girl who has a seemingly perfect, privileged life: she attends a highly selective private school, her parents are financially solid, she lives in a big house. However when an activist, Moses, comes onto the scene […]

Posted April 18, 2016 by chooseyabooks in reviews / 0 Comments

Review: The Worst Girlfriend in the World by Sarra Manning

Review: The Worst Girlfriend in the World by Sarra Manning

Review: Ever since I was a teenager and read Let’s Get Lost, Sarra Manning has been one of my must-read YA authors. I just love her writing so I was pleased to snag an egalley of latest YA, The Worst Girlfriend In The World. Franny’s best friend Alice is regarded as the worst girlfriend in the world to many of the local boys, with that title cheerfully blasted on the boy’s bathroom wall. However that’s never affected their friendship. Until Franny starts college to study fashion while Alice stays at their old school for sixth form cracks form. One almighty crack in their friendship called Louis Allen, lead singer of the awful local band The Desperadoes and Franny’s crush of choice for years. However, when Alice sets her sights on him how will their friendship survive their deal that the best […]

Posted April 29, 2014 by chooseyabooks in reviews / 0 Comments