Title: 10 Truths And A Dare
Author: Ashley Elston
Genre: Young Adult/Contemporary
It’s Senior Week! That magical in-between time after classes have ended, but before graduation, that’s filled with gimmicky theme parties, last-minute bonding, and family traditions. Olivia couldn’t be more ready. Class salutatorian, and confident in her future at LSU, she’s poised to sail through to the next phase of her life. But when the tiny hiccup of an unsigned, off-campus P.E. form puts Olivia in danger of not graduating, she has one week to set things straight without tipping off her very big and very nosy extended family.
Last year, I read “10 Blind Dates” by this author. It was a charming YA contemporary set during the Christmas season. I was excited to pickup her newest read, which follows one of the minor characters from that story. This time around, we follow Olivia, who is a straight-A student, salutatorian, and bound for LSU. However, she must complete her required off-campus P.E. course in only a week, or she can kiss graduation goodbye. Sounds like the making of a great contemporary, right? Maybe not.
I wanted to like this book; and believe me, I tried. I felt very disconnected with both the lead character and the plot. I have noticed a trend in YA contemporary females; they are all portrayed as perfect students and planners. Basically extreme versions of Rory Gilmore. Olivia was also an academic perfectionist, but one who couldn’t handle fulfilling a simple P.E. requirement. I understand that someone with a workload of all AP classes might not put much effort into P.E., but why wouldn’t she want a good grade? She is an overachiever, after all.
One plot point that didn’t make sense to me was Olivia’s overbearing mother. The fact that her mother texts her multiple times in an hour, and installed a tracker app on her high-school senior daughter’s phone is a bit much. I don’t know if that was supposed to seem funny, but it was more weird. Also, the title suggests there be more of a truth-or-dare aspect to this story. But the question of truth or dare, was more of a way to get the plot moving, than an actual feature in the story.
A disappointment for me, was that there wasn’t many characters besides Olivia. We did have moments with other characters, like her cousins and love interest, but I wanted more of her extended family. One of the best parts of “10 Blind Dates” was the family relationships, which this book woefully lacked. As for the ending, everything was wrapped up with a nice little bow, but was a bit too convenient and predictable. Also, books about golf, unless they are super original, always bore me.
I am not by any means writing Ashley Elston off, but this book was a letdown. Let me know your thoughts on the book in the comments below. You can follow the blog via email to get notified whenever I post.
Until The Next Chapter,