Sunday 13 March 2011

Book Review - Back To Life & The Facts Of Life

Title: Back to Life
         The Facts of Life
       Books 5&6 in the Rachel Riley series
Author: Joanna Nadin
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN-13: 978-0192729224 (book 5)
ISBN-13: 978-0192729231

I have decided to do a joint review for these two as each book does 6 months of a year and I didn't think I could write enough about each individually.

Carpe diem i.e. seize the day! Which means utter experimenting as far as snogging is concerned. Am never going to find the ONE if just keep having accidental liaisons with Jack or ill-advised flirtations with Justin. The ONE is out there somewhere. Maybe even right under my nose. I just need to be open-minded. And open-armed. And possibly open-mouthed. Life, as they say, is what you make it. And am definitely, no doubt about it, going to make mine fabulous. Starting now. 
Just when I thought had finally found knight in shining skinny jeans i.e. the ONE, i.e. Jack, knight gets all minty. It's all about matter of accidental snog with part-time rock god Justin Statham. Even though have explained was utterly in name of scientific experiment. Enough is enough! It's time for me to wake up and smell the coffee (or at least the hot chocolate) and forget about romance and fairytale happy endings. Will concentrate only on cold hard facts from now on. Perhaps new grown-up-ness will even win the heart of fabulous older man . . .

My Review
I was still hooked on these books and wanted to know what would happen, but now I am finished I am actually pleased they are over. They are still quick reads, writing split up like diary entries that allow short bursts of reading and not much thought, but I found myself getting a little bit bored through the last book especially.
In book 5 'Back to Life', Rachel is determined to prove she is more grown up and 'worldly' and will find love, but really she has no idea about what she really wants and kissing random people doesn't make her happy (no surprise there). She starts kissing Davey McDonald, school idiot and potential pervert, convinced she will be able to change him into her perfect man, but it doesn't go to plan. 
I still giggled at parts of this book but also found myself thinking about skipping bits, it just seemed to go on a but too much. However the book ended with the moment I have been waiting for since starting the first book and I closed it with a satisfied sigh, ready to see if it all carried on in the next book.
Book 6 'The Facts Of Life' starts with Rachel and Jack in a happy relationship - hallelujah, it's what we've all been waiting for and predicting since the series began. I would have been happy to end it there but was determined to complete the series and within no time, that happy couple had split. Rachel then goes on a quest to become 'more mature and fact based, than childish with her head in another world'. This book still had good parts, and her brother James gets more ridiculous yet lovable with each book, but I just felt like Nadin had strung the series out a bit too far. Rachel was moaning more and never seemed to focus on anything, and her 'friends' never seemed to want to be particularly involved in her life and only appeared with sarcastic comments or whining of their own.
It was still a quick read, I read it in one day, and am pleased I read through to the end, but am also glad I am done. The book didn't really end properly either which i found more than slightly annoying, she decides what she wants, but we don't know if she gets it. I hope this isn't set for another one, wish it could have just been wrapped up.
If you love the series or want some mindless quick reads, then I would recommend this series, but it's not the best i've read. Feel slightly disappointed with it all.

My Rating
I would give these books 4.5/10 each. Rachel still whiny and not quite the ending I had hoped for. but good for a quick read.   

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