Author: Michelle Pennington
Publication Date: April 17, 2012
Life is simple for high school senior, Sienna Whitfield. With a few good friends, a camera, and a dream, she has everything she needs to be happy. But when Jordan Rubio, the most popular girl at Haskins High, makes her mad, she decides to use the power of photography to right a few social wrongs. As if that doesn’t cause enough drama in her life, she realizes she’s falling for the new guy, Lee Franklin. Strong and protective, he’s just what she needs to survive the craziness she’s stirred up at school. If only she didn’t have to keep her feelings for Lee a secret from her mom…
Sienna Whitfield is a high school senior with a great head on her shoulders. She works hard, gets good grades and has a great relationship with her mother. Even though she is somewhat invisible at school, she keeps her head down and is just trying to survive the last few months before her real life starts. That is until a new boy, Lee Franklin, moves into town and throws her off her plan completely. Even though all the girls in school want to get his attention, it's Sienna that does. Unfortunately for her, her mother has given her strict rules about dating. As in, not at all until she graduates. But Sienna and Lee are becoming closer and Sienna is starting to wonder if maybe her mom's rules aren't really right for her.
As if this isn't stressful enough, being with Lee does have it's downside. Jordan Rubio, the school's most popular girl, has Sienna in her sights and she is having a great time making her life miserable. However, after being bullied too many times, Sienna is finally ready to fight back. She decides to put her two favorite hobbies, photography and blogging, to good use and to put Jordan in her place.
The Characters: Sienna is a remarkable teenager and I really admired her work ethic and relationship with her mother. I know how it feels to want to lay low at school and just make it through as quickly and painlessly as possible. I felt truly connected with her and was anxious for her to open up and see that there is a lot more to life than just photography.
As much as I connected with Sienna, it was that hard for me to connect with Lee. All I really knew about him was that he was handsome and played basketball. He also seemed to be very jealous and I was concerned as the story went on that he may become violent towards Sienna.
As for the other side characters, I felt they were entertaining and believable. Several times I wanted to jump into this story and smack Jordan and her groupies!
The Storyline: One of my favorite thing about this story is that there were several storylines going on at once. Yes, there was the relationship between Sienna and Lee, but there was also the relationship between Sienna and her mother, as well as Sienna's school life.
Sienna's mother is very protective, too much so. Having Sienna as a teenager herself, she doesn't want Sienna to make the same mistakes. What starts out as a strong relationship between mother and daughter quickly turns into a tense situation. There was definitely something to be learned here and I hope all young readers will pick up on it.
As for Sienna's school life, yikes! She is so close to graduating and has been doing a fairly decent job of staying off of Jordan's radar for the most part. This is why I was a little confused at first as to why Sienna would deliberately pick a fight with her and purposely make her last few months of school torture. But as the story went on, I quickly learned why Sienna had finally had enough. Maybe she didn't handle it in the right way, but I think someone can only take so much before you have to fight back any way you know how.
The Writing: With so much going on in one story, you'd think things would become overwhelming. Not here! Michelle Pennington really knows how to suck you into her world. The story was evenly spaced and the dialogue was smart and witty. I cruised right through this story because I just couldn't put it down. Sienna was a real, likable character that you just need to see succeed.
Overall, I really enjoyed Candid. Even though I did have a few concerns along the way, I was very satisfied with the outcome. I always find it refreshing when a story comes along that portrays a strong teen female who doesn't live for boys. I am quite happy to see that there will be another book in this series coming out soon. I'll be reading it for sure.
I recommend this to anyone and everyone who loves YA, has been the not-so-popular kid in school or is just looking for a fun new read!
Want to read Candid for yourself? Right now you can purchase the ebook for just $2.99 from Amazon! If you would like to learn more about Michelle Pennington, check out her blog!