Thursday, April 22, 2010

Review: The Naughty List

The Naughty List
By Suzanne Young
Publication date: February 4, 2010
My rating: ***

My review:

The cheerleaders at Washington High are called the Smitten Kittens. This cutesy nickname hides the fact that the girls are also operatives in S.O.S., an agency devoted to investigating boys who cheat that was started by a former captain of the squad whose boyfriend cheated on her. The Smitten Kittens use high tech and low tech means to gather incriminating evidence. Current captain Tessa Crimson is feeling depressed because every boy they've investigated has been guilty. Tessa herself seems to have a perfect boyfriend in Aiden but now a handsome new student is flirting with Tessa outrageously and his sister can't seem to keep her hands off Aiden. Tessa is sure he is loyal but then Aiden's name appears on the list.

The Naughty List is a good book for beach reading. There is plenty of humor throughout the book, especially the S.O.S. reports between chapters and their efforts at espionage. Tessa and her friends at times seem very silly but they genuinely care about the other girls at their school and they want to be good role models, especially Tessa. She has the best interests of the other female students at heart but it is really hard on her to hide S.O.S. from Aiden and it is also hard on her trust in him when she sees so many other boys cheat. I felt for her during those moments and I liked that she considered the ethics of spying.

While I liked some aspects of Tessa's character, she could be really annoying sometimes. She has the habit of replacing swear words with terms like "fudge ripple" and while it is admirable that she wants to avoid swearing I still found it incredibly irritating to read. I thought it was slightly strange that a girl who had no problems with a physical relationship with her boyfriend would be so offended by swearing. I also didn't care for Tessa's boyfriend Aiden. He seemed to be kind of dumb and though he could be nice to Tessa he didn't always show the best judgment. The new character Christian was rather interesting and complex and his sister was a classic mean girl. They both added drama to Tessa's life which helped to move the plot along.

Overall I liked The Naughty List but I was just a little disappointed. On the plus side I enjoyed the humor and the unexpected plot twist but I couldn't fully connect with Tessa or her friends. I think I was expecting them to be a little bit more like Cameron Morgan and the other Gallagher Girls from the Ally Carter spy series. Instead Tessa and her friends were like the characters of the film Bring It On and its many sequels. The Naughty List isn't a bad book at all. It just didn't live up to my expectations when it came to the characters. This is the first book in a series so perhaps I would like the next book better and I did like how The Naughty List ended. If you are looking for a lighthearted funny book to take with you to the beach this summer, consider The Naughty List.


  1. I love humor in books and I've been wanting to read this one. Thanks for the review, I'm going to have to move it up in the buying list.

  2. I want to read this book so badly! I'm glad you liked it and then you didn't like it. I do like books with humor, but being a teenager in high school, something things you mention can get VERY ANNOYING. Maybe its because some authors try to make their characters sound like today's teens when we aren't anything like them? great review, I loved reading how you felt about it!


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