SHORT & SWEET REVIEW: THE SOUND BY SARAH ALDERSON

short and sweet

The Sound

I was sent The Sound by publisher Simon & Schuster because I was considering asking author Sarah Alderson to be a Stories on Stage guest and I wanted to get a feel for her writing. The invite didn’t work out, but in need of a quick read, I plucked this one from the shelf. I hadn’t planned to review it, but figured a “short and sweet review” of this YA novel wouldn’t go astray. Here’s the blurb:

When aspiring music journalist Ren Kingston takes a job nannying for a wealthy family on the exclusive island of Nantucket, playground for Boston’s elite, she’s hoping for a low-key summer reading books and blogging about bands. Boys are firmly off the agenda. What she doesn’t count on is falling in with a bunch of party-loving private school kids who are hiding some dark secrets; falling (possibly) in love with the local bad boy; and falling out with a dangerous serial killer …

The Sound was a quick read full of the usual love triangle, angsty conflict and teenage drama you’d expect from a YA novel. I found the crowd Ren hung around with, particularly the rich boys, to be more disturbing than the murder plotline. That element, which was unexpectedly a secondary plot rather than the main plot, just didn’t have enough tension for me … and the killer and motive just didn’t ring true. It’s the kind of read I’d have enjoyed as a teen (and there are some gushing reviews on Goodreads), but reading it as the mother of teenagers, it’s a bit young and cheesy for me. I can see why younger readers would be drawn to Alderson’s writing style, but I’d like to see how she writes for adults. One for die-hard YA lovers … and those closer in age to my boys.

Available from good bookstores. This copy was courtesy of Simon & Schuster.