Review: Supergirl Mixtapes by Meagan Brothers

Supergirl MixtapesSupergirl Mixtapes by Meagan Brothers

Publication Date: April 24, 2012
Page Count: 245
Format: Hardback
Published by: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)
Source: Library

Synopsis From Goodreads:

In Meagan Brothers's Supergirl Mixtapes, a music-obsessed girl travels to New York City to find herself. After years of boredom in her rural South Carolina town, Maria is thrilled when her father finally allows her to visit her estranged artist mother in New York City. She’s ready for adventure, and she soon finds herself immersed in a world of rock music and busy streets, where new people and ideas lie around every concrete corner. This is the freedom she’s always longed for—and she pushes for as much as she can get, skipping school to roam the streets, visit fancy museums, and flirt with the cute clerk at a downtown record store.

But just like her beloved New York City, Maria’s life has a darker side. Behind her mother’s carefree existence are shadowy secrets, and Maria must decide just where—and with whom—her loyalty lies.

Supergirl Mixtapes has been on my tbr for quite a while, and I finally had the chance to read it, only to be really disappointed. It was just sort of blah. Nothing really stands out about it. It almost makes me sad to say that, but there you go.

Though it is never said outright, Supergirl Mixtapes is set in the mid 1990's. It features a lot of different music, and tons of talk about musical artists and lyrics, but none of it was very interesting to me. It's not the sort of music I have ever listened to or cared about. But I could have gotten past that and enjoyed the book for what is was if the story and characters had been more compelling.

The protagonist, Maria, lives with her father after her mother abandoned them years earlier. Maria has a few problems (that were totally glossed over) and her father and grandmother allow her to move to New York so she can get to know her mother. I never really connected with Maria. I couldn't relate to her or her situation, and I couldn't find it in me to feel sympathetic towards her. My main problem was that Maria had no internal thoughts or dialogue, so I had absolutely no idea what she was thinking or feeling the entire book.

I didn't really like any of the secondary characters either. Maria's mother, Victoria, was very immature, and at times I wondered who was the daughter and who was the mother here. Victoria's much younger boyfriend, Travis, was intriguing at first, and I had high hopes for him. But he turned out to be just another character that I couldn't relate to. I also found it hard to believe that everyone Maria is close to is equally enthusiastic about music.

Not much happens for the first 3/4 of the book. I kept reading thinking that surely something major would be happening soon, but it never did. Maria muddles through living in New York and having a mother who is self-absorbed. All of the action takes place in the last 1/4 of the book, and Maria gets all of the pieces to the puzzle that is her mother. The ending was a bit of a letdown to me because it lacked a clear resolution.

This story really had promise, and I would have liked it better if Maria had more of a personality that came through on the pages. Even though Maria was the narrator, the author didn't give us any motivation for the things that Maria did. Without knowing what Maria was thinking and feeling, it was difficult for me to summon any sympathy for her and her situation.

This is definitely not one of my favorite reads. Even though the book is written very well, I found the characters and storyline lacking. If this book sounds like something you might enjoy, then go ahead and read it. Hopefully you will like it more than I did.

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

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