Thursday, November 17, 2011

"AcaPolitics" Review

by Stephen Harrison
Review by blameCarla

I was excited to get this book and began reading it the day it came in the mail. Unfortunately, life intervened and I didn’t get to finish it until a little while later, while on the plane to Marathon Key for vacation in sunny Florida.

The book is about the a cappella community at a small college facing budget cuts, which is something that I think every school is now facing, and because of this, one or more groups funded by the school will be cut. It is also a work of fiction, with heroes, villains, drama (yeah, lots of drama), and a love triangle/quadrilateral of sorts: all the things you need for a successful novel.

I was pleasantly surprised at how fast and good of a read it was. It caught my attention right off the bat, held it, and kept me reading all the way though, and for me, that’s not an easy thing to achieve. If I can figure out the end by the first chapter (which in a way I did and did not), I put the book down.

The characters are three dimensional, if sometimes somewhat predictable, but their quirks make them far less cookie-cutter and much more entertaining. The descriptions of a cappella singing are interesting and insightful to non-singers, and I often found myself enjoying those parts of the novel more than the drama at times, but I’m a music geek anyway, since I spend a lot of time listening to a cappella music.

The love story is complicated and fairly typical, but again the characters make it more realistic. I enjoyed the twist on the “bad girl wants the guy first for other reasons, but falls for him anyway” motif.

In a nutshell, it’s a fun, fast-paced read that kept me interested throughout the whole novel. The story and characters are engaging and the setting of a college campus was perfectly portrayed. I am excited to read the sequel!


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