Saturday, May 13, 2017

Book Review: Antisocial by Jillian Blake

Antisocial
By Jillian Blake
Release Date: May 16, 2017
Source: Publisher
6 hours and 30 minutes

Alexandria Prep is hacked in this whodunit set in the age of social media and the cloud.

Senior spring at Alexandria Prep was supposed to be for sleeping through class and partying with friends. But for Anna Soler, it’s going to be a lonely road. She’s just been dumped by her gorgeous basketball star boyfriend—with no explanation. Anna’s closest friends, the real ones she abandoned while dating him, are ignoring her. The endearing boy she’s always had a complicated friendship with is almost too sympathetic.

But suddenly Anna isn’t the only one whose life has been upended. Someone is determined to knock the kings and queens of the school off their thrones: one by one, their phones get hacked and their personal messages and photos are leaked. At first it’s funny—people love watching the dirty private lives of those they envy become all too public. 

Then the hacks escalate. Dark secrets are exposed, and lives are shattered. Chaos erupts at school. As Anna tries to save those she cares about most and to protect her own secrets, she begins to understand the reality of our always-connected lives: 

Sometimes we share too much.

I was very intrigued when I first read this synopsis and thought it would be so interesting if everyone's online secrets were suddenly revealed. The internet and social media are places people feel like they can do things without people knowing or without repercussion, so I couldn't wait to see what would happen when high schoolers would have to face the consequences of those secrets being revealed. 

Coming back from winter break, senior Anna Soler has returned to a very different life. As her boyfriend just broke up with her, Anna doesn't know if she can be friends with the group of people she just sort of dropped when she started dating her ex-boyfriend. But when personal things are becoming leaked at school, Anna finds herself in the background to the drama that has just been unleashed. People lives start to unravel and chaos takes over the lives of the seemingly perfect royalty of the school. 

Starting this book, I found it really hard to connect with the characters. I felt like it started out in a really weird spot where Anna has already been dumped by her boyfriend and was trying to find her way back into her old friend group. It felt info-dumpy when we were introduced to her old group of friends, so I found it hard to get to know and like the other side characters. Not to mention Anna already had a sort of past with Jethro, her friend who was always a little something more that they never acted upon. Their relationship didn't sit right with me, especially with something that happened so soon after her relationship with her ex-boyfriend had ended. 

Also, Anna is supposed to have an anxiety disorder and I didn't feel like it was all that believable. She would feel an anxiety attack coming on, but then it would go away super quickly. She didn't really have to extract herself from the situation because something would happen to make it go away. Also, the way Anna describes the people in the book was sort of cliche and they all fell into very cliche stereotypes of high school. I did enjoy how so many secrets were slowly revealed and how the hacker of the school started to escalate in intensity, but I just found it hard to connect with all of the characters, including the main character. 

In the end, this was just an okay book to me. It was definitely entertaining and I did enjoy reading it, but I wish I could connect with the main character and the side characters a little more.





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