Through the Lens by Shannon Dermott
Genre: YA Contemporary Romance (?)
Publication Date: August 25, 2016
Format: I received a copy from the publisher through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
You can purchase a copy of the book here: https://www.amazon.com/Through-Lens-Shannon-Dermott-ebook/dp/B00AC2NSXM/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1478134445&sr=8-1-fkmr0&keywords=through+the+lens+shannon+dermott
Being a twin isn’t all that bad, nor is it all that good. Being the fat twin makes things a little worse. Seventeen year old, Jessa Shelby has been all but ignored. Trimmed down, but not skinny like her sister, she has decided to make her mark in her final year in high school.
Things begin anew the summer before her senior year when she meets Ethan Hart, a super hot boy with a twisted past. Unfortunately, he has a girlfriend. Relegated to friend status with Ethan, she turns her eyes on football jock, Josh Macon, whose crush worthy too. No longer the ‘fat girl’, Josh seems to be interested in her too.
Spending more and more time with Ethan causes unexpected complications and she finds herself falling for the wrong boy. Josh is sweet but wants more than she can give. His warning about Ethan’s past may have come too late. And gasping for air with a noose around her neck, she has to wonder if trust came at a very high price.
This book had it’s ups and downs. There were parts that I could totally relate to, as well as envy, but there were a lot there I had problems with.
Let’s start from the beginning shall we? The book starts off really simple, Jessa is cleaning the attic with her dad and she finds a film camera and decides to take it with her when she goes on her run. Then out of the blue, she gets pulled into a butterfly display by this amazingly hot guy and then offered a job. Ok, so this is the first of my problems, just...huh? How? And then this guy, Ethan, offers to help her develop the film from her camera and they start hanging outside of work, only for Jessa to find out that he has a girlfriend, and none other than Ally, a tv star.
Secrets are uncovered and soon, things start going downhill. In most books that I’ve read, somethings has to be looking like it’s going well before it goes straight downhill, but this book starts off flat, and continues on flat, only in the end crashing even further.
In the end, Ethan is accused of kidnapping and murder of his previous girlfriend, and Jessa finds herself in a very strange position. After some convincing from the yearbook teacher, Jessa agrees to go to Ethans house to collect evidence that he’s innocent, from that particular matter at least, and Jessa is kidnapped and almost killed, only to see that the kidnapper was the yearbook teacher, and this was not his first offense.
The book was just kinda confusing and hard to keep up with what’s happening at each moment because the transitions happen so fast. It didn’t move smoothly and another storyline with Jessa’s twin and the popular guys she dates gets thrown in as well, which seemed to be out of place. I couldn’t determine what exactly the book was about at all and that really didn’t do it for me.
The characters didn’t have any real depth to them. You kinda know them on the surface, but you don’t see anything that’s happening besides that. The characters kind of just come and go, both literally and figuratively. You meet one character, and then suddenly they’re gone for 3 chapters where they somehow make an appearance once again.
The ending confused me. It happened so suddenly and without any warning. I was kind of happy to see the story heading in the direction that it did as I was hoping that the story would have some kind of story, finally but it cut off with minimum information. There was no way to see that happening, although it does answer the question of what happened to the other girls before. There really wasn’t that much information given and I really wanted to know what happened to their teacher, and what happened before. Like suddenly, Jessa is in the hospital and her friend is gone...can it get any more vague about it? I don’t believe there is a sequel to the book so the ending was way to abrupt as is. I feel like just one more chapter explaining everything would have made me love the book even more.
One thing that I did like was the film camera. Recently I’ve had an obsession with cameras and especially with how film cameras work (side note, I’m researching which ones are still being made and I want to purchase one so if you have any suggestions, let me know) so it was super fun to read about them developing the film and taking the pictures.
Overall, I give the book a 6/10 (3/5 stars). It was a very well written book, but there were just parts the wasn’t to my liking. All the characters seemed a bit dull and not as dimensional as they could have, as well as the storyline was hard to determine. All in all, the book really didn’t do it for me. The only part worth reading is the parts in the middle with everything going on with the camera. Other than that, i really don’t think the book is worth reading.
This review was a bit brutal but it’s my honest opinion. With that said, I want to know, are you going to give the book a try? The kindle copy is only a dollar right now so if you want to give it a try, I recommend getting it now. Leave me all your thoughts in the comments below or find me on social media, @BrookeEvans2001 on Twitter and @thecozylittlebooknook on Instagram. Remember to check back soon and I will have a Classic Fridays post up tomorrow and another review on Saturday!
Brooke's a high schooler who loves to read all sorts of books. She's happy to be able to share all the books she's reading with all of y'all.