Monday, August 22, 2016

Racing Savannah - Review

Racing Savannah (Hundred Oaks, # 4)

By: Miranda Kenneally

Published: December 3rd 2013 by Sourcebooks Fire

304 pages

Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Sports

Source: Borrowed from the Library

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Goodreads description--They’re from two different worlds.

He lives in the estate house, and she spends most of her time in the stables helping her father train horses. In fact, Savannah has always been much more comfortable around horses than boys. Especially boys like Jack Goodwin—cocky, popular and completely out of her league. She knows the rules: no mixing between the staff and the Goodwin family. But Jack has no such boundaries.

With her dream of becoming a horse jockey, Savannah isn’t exactly one to follow the rules either. She’s not going to let someone tell her a girl isn’t tough enough to race. Sure, it’s dangerous. Then again, so is dating Jack…

I think you guys know by now that I've had a rocky relationship with Miranda Kenneally's books. But I'm not going to focus on that, I'm just going to focus on Racing Savannah.

Savannah's mother passed away a few years back and her medical bills have really been tough on Savannah's father. He has been struggling to make ends meet and on top of that, his newish girlfriend is pregnant. But things are looking up as he's gotten a job as the head groom on the Goodwin's farm. And Savannah knows that she needs to try to get a job there as well to help with the bills and for herself. Yet she's never thought much about the future or what she wants.

Jack is trying so hard to prove himself to his father. His father's given him the run of the farm for the year. All decisions are Jack's, but it's a great opportunity for his father to help mentor him. While there's a lot of pressure on Jack, he manages pretty well. And he's not quite what everyone seems to think he is.

So that's the surface level stuff. But here's where we go deeper. I really liked both Savannah and Jack. Like really liked them. Savannah takes on burdens and responsibilities that shouldn't be hers. Instead of whining and moping all of the time, she takes on a huge part of her families problems. I respect Savannah mostly because of the level of respect that she had for herself. When Jack wasn't ready to go public with their relationship, Savannah doesn't stand for it. She's not fine being stuffed into the closet physically or metaphorically. Jack literally runs his father's farm. He's making big time decisions. He's helping his mother with a cookbook. His sister seems to adore him. I was just mostly impressed all around with these two.

That's not to say that Savannah and Jack didn't have their issues. Jack is sometimes more interested in his father's approval and appearances. Whereas Savannah had some insta-crushing going on. I also think these two were hasty in the physical department, but I felt like that is fairly realistic for teens these days. I enjoyed the side characters, particularly Rory and Vanessa even though they moved even quicker than Savannah and Jack.

Racing Savannah is not perfect, but the characters were some of the more respectable ones in YA literature despite their quick physical progress. I enjoyed the cameos from prior series characters. And I liked the story. Racing Savannah gets 4 Stars. Have you read Racing Savannah? What did you think? Let me know!

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