Published by Hot Tree Publishing on February 26th, 2019
Genres: Coming of Age
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I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Barely seventeen and as pretty as can be: the summer is their playground. Cait and her best friends Steph and Allie take on San Francisco's party scene with fake IDs and short dresses.
When Cait meets Adrien Cross, the charismatic lead singer of her favorite indie band, she's introduced to a hedonistic world of liquor and lust that she never wants to leave.
But then that world spirals out of control and the harsh realities of reckless living take a toll on Cait and the ones she loves.
What will be left when the makeup masks wash off, the bottles are empty, and Cait begins to lose her grip on everything?
Katey Taylor's heart-wrenching debut novel will have you strapped into the intense rollercoaster ride of Cait's life and one chaotic summer that will change it all.
Katey Taylors’ debut Inebriated had me intrigued from the moment I read the blurb. This gritty sounding YA set in San Francisco/Bay area ended up nearly being a one sitting read. The situation is one that transcends time. This could have been set in any years since the the 60’s with raucous teenager girls enjoying a summer break. But before the end of the summer everything for Cait will have changed.
Life in Bay area suburb of Calaveras is pretty typical; teenagers sneaking out at night, lying to their parents and partying to extremes. The story opens with Cait waking from a blackout, literally on the streets of San Francisco. The tone is set and you know it’s going to be a rocky ride. My heart ached for Cait as we witness her family descending into dissolution and she struggles to fit in and find love. Her encounter with local musician Adrien Cross changes the trajectory of her life immeasurably.
I enjoyed this book a lot and I think that if the author set out to show the reality of teen life where bad influences and poor choices have monumental and far reaching impacts. Cait experiences a transformation as she tries to deal with her parents, her friends and makes a decision that I could only see as wise – a decision that will further change the trajectory of her life. Overall I enjoyed moments where she shows keen awareness of her parents as individuals and how they try to work on their marriage for the sake of their family.
While I liked this story I did struggle with some of the writing. At times the dialogue felt very choppy or stilted, specifically the inconsistent use of contractions, and this affected the readability. Near the end Cait experiences an epiphany of sorts and while I appreciate the much needed closure on the situation, her actions and the language she uses felt unnatural for the moment, time, and her circumstance. I experienced a bit of whiplash from it but maybe that was the point. Cait is getting there but she’s still not the most predicable character. After all, she is a teenager.
All the same, Cait embraces a decision that only points to a much needed and positive change and Taylor infuses the story with a poetic ending that made me really happy. 4 Stars!
~Review by Cyndi
All buy links ➙ https://linktr.ee/kateyltaylor
We all try our hardest to be perfect creatures. Some call it vain but sometimes the obsession for perfection can be a disease.
Allie was waving back at us to join her. The cute boys introduced themselves and said they would show us the direction to Swank if we followed them. I was starting to feel dizzy and leaned against one of the boys for balance. I can’t remember his name or really anything after that. I must have blacked out everything from that point on.
A loud truck horn pulls me back to reality, reminding me where I am, alone and in desperate need to get home. I open my wallet and pull out the credit card my parents gave me to use on food, clothes, basic essentials, and emergency situations. This is definitely an emergency situation in my book. My mother rarely checks the card statements, but I don’t think she’d be pleased to see a fifty-dollar cab charge home from San Francisco in the wee hours of the morning or pleased at my current situation. But I need to get out. So, I muster every bit of strength I have to pull myself up and take off my four-inch heels to stagger down the block for a cab driver. Lucky for me, San Francisco never has a shortage of cabs, and I’m able to flag one down quickly. Through his thick accent, the scruffy cab driver asks where I need to go.
“I need to get to Calaveras.”
He checks me out in the rearview mirror and laughs. “You’re far away from home. Rough night?”
Don’t remind me. I force a smile, then catch a glimpse of myself in the mirror. I look like death. My perfectly applied makeup is all off with just the residue of black mascara smeared under my eyes. Closing my eyes, I let out a sigh and slouch down, pressing my head against the cool glass window. I promise myself I will never let this happen again.