Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Calli by Jessica Lee Anderson Review

Title: Calli
Author: Jessica Lee Anderson
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Page Count: 198 pages, 315 KB
Publish Date: September 13, 2011
Book Type: Kindle e-galley from NetGalley
Publisher: Milkweed Editions
ISBN: 9781571316998
Picture from Amazon
From Goodreads: Fifteen-year-old Calli has just about everything she could want in life—two loving moms, a good-looking boyfriend, and a best friend who has always been there for support. An only child, Calli is excited when her parents announce that they want to be foster parents. Unfortunately, being a foster sister to Cherish is not at all what Calli expected. First Cherish steals Calli’s boyfriend, then begins to pit Calli’s moms against one another, and she even steals Calli’s iPod. Tired of being pushed around and determined to get even, Calli steals one of Cherish’s necklaces. But this plan for revenge goes horribly awry, and Cherish ends up in juvenile detention.
Isolating herself from her moms, her boyfriend, and even her best friend, Calli wrestles with her guilt and tries to figure out a way to undo the damage she’s caused. When her moms are asked to take on another foster child, Calli sees an opportunity to make amends for her past mistakes.
Funny, moving, and emotionally rich, Calli is a portrait of an endearing young woman caught between adolescence and adulthood, striving to do the right thing even when all of her options seem wrong.
My Review: This cover is fine. I enjoy how the letters in the title have some design to them. I don’t know the technical term for this, but I like the look of it. I actually really do enjoy the bottom of the cover, but the top of it I am sort of indifferent about. I think this must be because that is not how I pictured Calli... at all.   
The story was interesting, yet I couldn’t bring myself to be completely invested in it. I think I was expecting a story that would tug at my heartstrings a bit more than Calli did. I was looking for a contemporary YA novel that was emotional and made my heart heavy. What I got was a realistic look into the everyday life of Calli. At times, the story could be a bit boring, but I definitely became more interested near the end. Maybe if I had gone into Calli with different expectations, I would have enjoyed it more. 
I thought that Calli was well developed, but the other characters could have been given a bit more depth. This may have been different if the book wasn’t written in first person. So many layers would have been added to the story if Calli’s foster sister, Cherish, had been a more developed character. I just wish that I would have gotten to know the characters more--I finished the book not really knowing who many of the characters were.
What about you, have you read Calli yet? What were your thoughts?


  1. Yeah, from the Goodreads it definitely sounds much more "heartstrings" and from your review it sounds more "slice of life." Like those Indie movies in the 90s where it was just this peek at someone's life with no real major ups or downs.

    I hadn't actually heard of this book and on screen I'm not too sure the cover would have grabbed me, but IRL on the shelves it might have. I do like the font they used for her name.

    In books where I'm not given much about the characters then I at least want to feel something for them, rather than detached and disinterested.

    Okay, sorry for the long ramble. Your review definitely says much more than the GR did. I'm not sure if I'll read it, but at least you've let me know what to expect! Great insight.

  2. @Fiktshun

    I totally didn't hate it, was just a bit underwhelmed. I was a tiny bit disappointed because I think the story could have been a great realistic YA novel, but it just fell short.

    Don't worry, I enjoy your long comments. :)


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