Review: #scandal by Sarah Ockler

#scandalReview: #scandal by Sarah Ockler

Publication Date: June 17, 2014
Page Count: 368
Published by: Simon Pulse
Source: eArc received from publisher in exchange for an honest review

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Lucy’s learned some important lessons from tabloid darling Jayla Heart’s all-too-public blunders: Avoid the spotlight, don’t feed the Internet trolls, and keep your secrets secret. The policy has served Lucy well all through high school, so when her best friend Ellie gets sick before prom and begs her to step in as Cole’s date, she accepts with a smile, silencing about ten different reservations. Like the one where she’d rather stay home shredding online zombies. And the one where she hates playing dress-up. And especially the one where she’s been secretly in love with Cole since the dawn of time.

When Cole surprises her at the after party with a kiss under the stars, it’s everything Lucy has ever dreamed of… and the biggest BFF deal-breaker ever. Despite Cole’s lingering sweetness, Lucy knows they’ll have to ’fess up to Ellie. But before they get the chance, Lucy’s own Facebook profile mysteriously explodes with compromising pics of her and Cole, along with tons of other students’ party indiscretions. Tagged. Liked. And furiously viral.

By Monday morning, Lucy’s been branded a slut, a backstabber, and a narc, mired in a tabloid-worthy scandal just weeks before graduation.

Lucy’s been battling undead masses online long enough to know there’s only one way to survive a disaster of this magnitude: Stand up and fight. Game plan? Uncover and expose the Facebook hacker, win back her best friend’s trust, and graduate with a clean slate.

There’s just one snag—Cole. Turns out Lucy’s not the only one who’s been harboring unrequited love...

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I wanted to love this book. I really did. And for the most part I thought it was pretty good. But I just wasn't able to connect with the story or the characters the way I would have liked.

Lucy was an alright character, but I didn't think she was anything special. I did feel really terrible about all of the things that happened to her, and I thought she was falsely blamed. Some of the characters were downright mean to her and I really didn't think she deserved the shame and humiliation. Ah, the joys of social media. Not. I also didn't like Lucy's friendship with Ellie. Something about it really felt off from the very beginning, and I didn't like that Lucy had to try so hard to convince her best friend that she was innocent.

My biggest complaint about this book? There wasn't enough Cole. Not even CLOSE to being enough of him in this book. I know next to nothing about him, he was hardly even present in the story, and he was the one I was most interested in! I felt no connection to him at all, but from the little information we got I could tell why Lucy wanted to be with him. Kudos to him for standing by Lucy's side throughout her ordeal. He seemed like a really sweet guy who maybe didn't always make great choices. I feel like he got a free pass on his part in the scandal. I wish he had been upfront and honest about his true feelings, both with Ellie and with Lucy.

As the story progressed, it became too unrealistic for me - the students seemed to control the school, with the principal only stepping in to clarify what was going on, and then stepping back and letting things take their course while reprimanding the wrong students for the things that were happening. The drama really started piling on, one after another, and it was just too much for me to take, so I don't know how Lucy was expected to handle things. It was like watching train cars go off the tracks one at a time until you think they are done, but no, more cars keep jumping the track. When is enough enough?

Besides the scandal itself, there was also the mystery of who stole Lucy's phone and uploaded the photos, and there was even some intrigue surrounding the gossip columnist, Miss Demeanor. There were a few times when I thought the story was dragging and I got a little bored. I don't like being bored while reading because it takes away my enjoyment and it feels like a chore to finish the book. So while #scandal was a bit of a miss for me, I'd still say you should give it a chance. And if you are looking for another Sarah Ockler book to read, I enjoyed The Book of Broken Hearts so much more than this one.

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
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  1. I nominated you for a liebester at :)

  2. I agree about Cole and the dragging bit--it did become a bit unrealistic, as you said. I haven't read any other Sarah Ockler books, but I'll definitely be checking out The Book of Broken Hearts! Great review (:

    Gabbie @ Rampant Readers

    1. She has some other really good books that are worth reading. This one just didn't do much for me.


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