Tuesday, September 10, 2013


Title: Cracked Up To Be
Author: Courtney Summers
Edition: eBook
Published: December 28, 2008
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Pages: 225
Source: Amazon
Category: Romance, Contemporary
Trailer: not available

What’s the worst thing you’ve ever done?

When “Perfect” Parker Fadley starts drinking at school and failing her classes, all of St. Peter’s High goes on alert. How has the cheerleading captain, girlfriend of the most popular guy in school, consummate teacher’s pet, and future valedictorian fallen so far from grace?

Parker doesn’t want to talk about it. She’d just like to be left alone, to disappear, to be ignored. But her parents have placed her on suicide watch and her counselors are demanding the truth. Worse, there’s a nice guy falling in love with her and he’s making her feel things again when she’d really rather not be feeling anything at all.

Nobody would have guessed she’d turn out like this. But nobody knows the truth.

Something horrible has happened, and it just might be her fault.
Cracked Up To Be is very intense novel!

I would like to thank Ciara of Lost at Midnight for hosting Courtney Summers' Read-a-long because without this, I wouldn't even learn about this novel! I must say I am impressed, this is my first Summers novel and I thoroughly enjoyed it so much!

Parker is perfectionist. It shows in her life: she's the cheerleading captain, snagged the hottest and most popular boy in school as her boyfriend, she tops all her classes and actually runs as valedictorian. But something went askew. She started drinking in school and became the meanest person alive. She was kicked out from the cheerleading team and her grades started failing. Even her relationship got affected. No one really knows what happened. She wouldn't tell anyone.

High school life is full of pressure but it is one of the most memorable parts of our life. It's tough but you get to keep friends and bond your friendship till you get old. Cracked Up To Be somehow mirrors the bad part of high school. The bullies will never cease, the sleepless nights caused by never ending homework/projects will drain you and always, the peer-pressure will always haunt you. Some snip-sets of the story really does happen in real life and any tragic event could cause anyone to change and put up a wall/defense mechanism to bury any bad memory. I liked how the novel describes the dark part of going to school and how it encourages not to go beyond drinking limits if that even made sense. I am not actually a fan of any kind of liquor so reading such novel with this intensity of partying that eventually lead to "circumstances", it makes me thank my dad's horrible liquor-tolerance-gene. Being drunk gives you so much confidence that you think you can anything you want to then if you screw up, you can blame the alcohol. Like what happened in this novel. That confidence could make you SAY things you're not even supposed to say when you're sober and it affects lives. I just never thought it would end up this horribly for some of the characters.

Parker is the best protagonist I have encountered when it comes to "being yourself" and "honesty". She's so damn mean but also so damn smart. I actually liked her brutality because its not everyday people would have the guts to tell you your flaws or how you honestly look or if your ideas are absurd. She may have changed because of what see SAW happened to her friend and she didn't help in a very unreasonable way but the fact that she remained honest, like straight-to-the-point-honest? I really like that. However, she's also very conceited. Like how confident she is that her Chris isn't over her yet. As a girl, that's pretty much the only thing I couldn't assume because one way or another, it will blow back to your face. No matter how beautiful she is, it cringes me up whenever I think about that scene. Chris loved her and I hope he didn't stop. Not only that I ship them but also because they know each other well and they go back several years. I still think that Christ is good for her no matter how nutty Parker is. I also don't understand her "relationship" with Becky. Like, I totally don't. And Jake. I don't get it, how can you be so interested in someone who pushes you away every time? Parker's so mean to him and I hope Jake liked someone else. He deserve better.

Cracked Up To Be shows extremely destructive events that some people wouldn't know how to handle. It gives not only moral lessons but also encouragement that there are people out there who are willing to listen and help. Being perfect is too mainstream that the novel surprisingly elaborated. Perfection doesn't exist at all thus we have to be what we ought to be. It is written beautifully and I really can't get enough of it!

"The sooner you make a mistake and learn to live with it, the better. You're not responsible for everything. You can't control the way things end up."
"The problem with alienating, self-destructive behavior is people get it into their heads it’s a cry for help. It wasn't."
"Becky, you're only standing there because I decided I didn't want to."


  1. So happy you loved this one. I hear that Courtney Summers is a great author and glad to have found someone who agrees with that yet again:) I totally agree with you--people just think that if you were drunk, it justifies one's actions. Guess what? It doesn't. Seems like Parker is quite a candid girl. Oh yes, perfection isn't everything and as soon as a person realizes that, one knows that imperfection is more beautiful and interesting than the old perfection everyone is aiming for. Such a great review, Kate!

    1. Thank you so so much for reading/commenting, Siiri! And for agreeing!


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