Sunday, July 22, 2012
Lights, Camera, Cassidy: Celebrity
15 March 2012, Puffin.
Cassidy is in Spain with her parents, who are the hosts of the cooking show When in Rome. She's used to living abroad, having a tutor, and moving from place to place, but she's a little fed up with her parents' restrictions. She sneaks out early one morning, hoping for some alone time, but before she can make it back, her parents find out. They are livid and concerned for her safety, and threaten to send her to live with her grandmother in Ohio. The show's ratings aren't so hot, though, and Cassidy's blog is very popular, so the producers want her to stick around and film segments with Mateo, the son of an old friend of her father's. Mateo is pretty cute, and they have a good time on the set, and then Logan, the son of the producer shows up as well! Definitely NOT the time to be sent back to the States! However, it turns out that a video Cassidy took on the morning she was wandering around on her own shows a group of men robbing a church, and is detailed enough that the police are able to haul in a fairly famous criminal. Cassidy's parents become even more worried about her safety, and when Logan, Mateo and Cassidy take off for a day at the beach, she gets into even bigger trouble. I'm happy to report that in book #2, Paparazzi, Cassidy gets to go to Greece (where I lived for a year!), and in Hacked, she goes to Costa Rica. There is even a book four, Drama, in the works! Now if they were just in hardcover!
Strengths: This is a great combination of travel, cooking shows, romance, and regular teen issues. The covers are bright and appealing, and there is even a little bit of a mystery involved. I love that she has Logan for a romantic interest, and he will travel with her, and then she can meet a new local hottie in every port! All the fun that we have come to expect from the awesome Ms. Gerber.
Weaknesses: The fact that I read this book four days before Surly Teen Boy left for the Philippines might explain why I wanted to slap Cassidy just a teeny bit. You sneak out once, you get in trouble, you don't do it again, NOT you sneak out even though a notorious criminal has you in his sites! As a parent with a child abroad, this made me very nervous, but the teen readers will be more sympathetic to Cassidy!