Saturday, February 25, 2012

Welcome Caller, This Is Chloe, by Shelley Coriell

Welcome, Caller, This Is ChloeWelcome, Caller, This Is Chloe by Shelley Coriell

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Chloe Camdem is a girl of large enthusiasms and small self-consciousness. She's pretty, popular, and the youngest child of a large, happy and wealthy family of doctors (who are all a bit too busy for her, actually). Despite those trappings of entitlement, Chloe's the kind of girl who's not too cool to enthusiastically wear a burrito costume advertising the Mexican restaurant where she works and finds friendship, inspiration and guidance. She also spends lots of time with her grandmother, whose failing faculties place Chloe in the center of the ongoing and rather bitter conflict between Grams and Chloe's mom over Gram's continuing independence. For a smart cookie, Chloe can be rather clueless, I must say, and she never really does comprehend why her former bff's have turned on her so abruptly and ferociously, just after Chloe was crowned queen of the Winter Dance (hint, green eyes may be involved). But the biggest challenge Chloe faces is the cancellation of her big required Junior year project by the new guidance counsellor, who definitely seems out to get her. When her new project involves resucitating the ailing school radio station, even the irrepressible Chloe finds the challenge daunting, although not without it's rewards (enter swoony mysterious scarf-wearing dude).

I enjoyed this quite bit, mostly because Chloe is such a charming MC. It's a bit of an issue-o-rama, what with addictions, aging, bullying, bitchiness, true crimes and loneliness all playing a part in the plot. Chloe is a bit too good to be true, but that's part of what makes her and the book appealing. I really felt like reaching in and shaking more than one of her antagonists, and relished the various vindications that mercifully are sprinkled throughout. This is a good solid fun read, and Chloe will stick with you long after 88.8 "The Edge," has signed off for the evening!

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