Winning Review

About the book:

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Title: Winning

Author: Lara Deloza

Genre & Age Group: Contemporary, young adult

Goodreads Synopsis:

House of Cards meets Election in this wickedly entertaining story about an uber-ambitious high school junior.

Whoever said being nice would get you to the top?

Certainly not Alexandra Miles. She isn’t nice, but she’s more than skilled at playing the part. She floats through the halls of Spencer High, effortlessly orchestrating the actions of everyone around her, making people bend to her whim without even noticing they’re doing it. She is the queen of Spencer High—and it’s time to make it official.

Alexandra has a goal, you see—Homecoming Queen. Her ambitions are far grander than her small town will allow, but homecoming is just the first step to achieving total domination. So when peppy, popular Erin Hewett moves to town and seems to have a real shot at the crown, Alexandra has to take action.

With the help of her trusted friend Sam, she devises her most devious plot yet. She’ll introduce an unexpected third competitor in the mix, one whose meteoric rise—and devastating fall—will destroy Erin’s chances once and for all. Alexandra can run a scheme like this in her sleep. What could possibly go wrong?

Source: Public library

How I Found Out About It: Blogging

Review:

After reading some great reviews of Winning, upon seeing it at my library, I decided to check it out and see if my opinions compare. It turned out to be a great story- but this is not to say that it didn’t have its share of flaws, either.

For a quick summary, this book is told from the perspectives of 4-5 high school girls. Alexandra, the main protagonist out of the 5, is one of the most popular girls at their high school. Her dream is to become homecoming queen, and she’d do anything to win it. But Alexandra’s chances of winning are suddenly lessened when a bubbly new girl named Erin comes into the picture- Alexandra decides that she must do something tedious to her in order to secure her spot at homecoming queen. But plans like this do have their setbacks…

Okay. The characters. Ugh- there were two aspects that had me wincing. First, all those unexpected POVs… I was just expecting there to be one, Alexandra’s, but then a few other girls turned out to narrate, as well. It does not hint in the synopsis that more than one girl will take the lead, so I just wanted to warn you to be ready to keep track of a lot of characters if you decide to pick up this book.

Secondly, the characters themselves weren’t the most loveable. All of them were deeply flawed in their own ways, and many of them made decisions that made me want to scream at them. There were just way too many POVs to talk about each of them individually, but let’s just say that Alexandra was the worst of them all. She was downright mean, selfish, and brash, and only seemed to care about her own feelings. I did see where a lot of them were coming from, though, as I myself am also in high school, and thus, I was able to relate to a lot of them.

Anyway, let’s push aside the disappointing characters for now and focus on all the good stuff that came out of this story. The plot was super engaging and mesmerizing, and there were plot twists everywhere! It had me sitting on the edge of my seat, turning the pages like the world was about to end. I also really liked how this book ended, and in my opinion, the right person got chosen to be homecoming queen😉 .

The morals of this book were also amazing! It really showed how everyone is a winner, no matter who they are, no matter if they are declared to be one or not. Everyone is good at different things, and just because someone doesn’t win homecoming queen doesn’t mean that they aren’t a good person. Let’s face it, only one person can win out of what is probably hundreds, and in retrospect, it’s pretty much just a crown. Crowns can be bought almost anywhere. I definitely understand how someone may like the recognition of becoming homecoming queen, but it won’t help you in the long run, and it’s honestly better to focus on being a winner in other things that can actually get you somewhere, like academics.

All in all, Winning was a great story with lots of juicy drama-it’s basically just the characters I had a bit of an issue with. If you’re a teen in high school looking for a coming-of-age book with lots of competition and drama, then this book is your win!😉

Rating: 4/5 Stars

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