Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Pub Date: 2011
Top 25: No
Convince us to read the book: The author of Choker begins by spinning a simple and typical story: a quiet high school student becomes more popular and starts talking to her love interest with the new support of a childhood friend. The protagonist, Cara, seems relatable even when the author throws in the murders of two of her classmates. Cara comes out of her shell as the plot progresses, but like the writing, she stays unremarkable. Of the many threads followed in the book, my favorite was the backstory of Cara's runaway best friend, Zoe. The book opens with a scene from their childhood, demonstrating the dynamics of their relationship, and is sprinkled with hints at Zoe's life since then that foreshadow the story's conclusion nicely.
Memorable or Forgettable: In the end of Choker, it is discovered that Cara is insane, which throws every event from the book into question. This tactic left me dissatisfied because I had no way to separate the real from the imaginary. On the other hand, I appreciated hearing the thoughts of a mentally ill character, as readers are not often let into their minds. If not for the ending, this would be one of the most forgettable books I have ever read.
Cover: I liked the intricate pattern of trees around the edge of the cover, and the sharp contrast of the black. I thought the pink background was bland, but overall, the cover represented the book well and drew my eye.
Age Range: 12-15
Quality: 3Q Readable
Popularity: 4P Broad general teen appeal