Book Review – Great

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Title: Great

Author: Sara Benincasa

Synopsis: Everyone loves a good scandal.

Naomi Rye usually dreads spending the summer with her socialite mother in East Hampton. This year is no different. She sticks out like a sore thumb among the teenagers who have been summering (a verb only the very rich use) together for years. But Naomi finds herself captivated by her mysterious next-door neighbor, Jacinta. Jacinta has her own reason for drawing close to Naomi-to meet the beautiful and untouchable Delilah Fairweather. But Jacinta’s carefully constructed world is hiding something huge, a secret that could undo everything. And Naomi must decide how far she is willing to be pulled into this web of lies and deception before she is unable to escape.

Rating: 4 stars

Review: I do love a good retelling, and this certainly fit the bill. I haven’t read ‘The Great Gatsby’ since I was sixteen (five years ago now), but I remembered enough of it to see parallels throughout this book.

Me Before Reading It:

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Me Halfway Through Reading It:

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Me After Finishing:

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I loved the LGBT twist on a classic – I could do with some more like this. Let’s do retellings of classic books like this more often, please.

Like always, Naomi Rye goes to visit her famous mother in the Hamptons for the summer, but this time around, she has her head turned by the eccentric but lovely Jacinta. However, she isn’t the only one affected by Jacinta’s unique brand of charm.

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This was one of those books I just whirled through for a few reasons; one, it was a short book, only 200-odd pages, ; and two, the whole world in general just pulled me in further and further with each page. I was enthralled by this sneaky and high-maintenance society that we’re introduced to via Naomi as the narrator.

First of all, I absolutely loved Jacinta from the start – she’s misunderstood, and she’s sweet and caring, and she’s a blogger! I love reading about characters who happen to be bloggers, for some reason. Jacinta in particular is a character who is a little unusual but she’s basically harmless. I can’t say any more without spoiling anything, so let’s move on.

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I do think that it could have been longer – the action all happened in the last twenty or so pages, which made it feel a little rushed and anti-climatic – but that can be excused because it’s stayed close to the original book to an extent. Yay for staying true to the original!

Also, I really hate bittersweet endings for making me feel all these things. The only way I can express how I feel about the ending of this book is through reaction gifs:

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I give it a four star rating because it’s not quite a five-star-worthy book. Almost, but not quite there. If you enjoy books about bitchy socialites, and devious relationships behind closed doors (think Gossip Girl), then you should read this. Even if you just want a filler book between bigger reads, then this is my recommendation to you.

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