Author: Benedict Reid
Genre: Middle Grade/YA Contemporary
Length: 170 Pages
My Rating: 3/5 Stars
I received this novel through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
Rob is a teen from Seattle living in New Zealand. He's the "American" in the group. After being exposed to the music (and coffee, but mostly music) in Seattle, Rob decides to start a band. With his friends David and Jimmy, Rob forms Out of Sight. The only problem: Rob has no musical talent. He has a good ear, but he can't sing or play an instrument.
Early on in the novel, when he discovers that Dave's sister Michelle is a killer bassist and singer, Rob decides that maybe his musical talents lie in management. He enters the band in a musical competition hoping that if they win he can use the winnings to help his crush Sarah with medical expenses. Things get crazy from here, but Out of Sight is a crown favorite.
This novel was fun, but could definitely use some improvement. The writing could use some polish to help it flow more smoothly. Rob and the rest of the characters are fairly interesting, but some of their dialogue is choppy.
I like the music aspect of the novel. I always enjoy reading about bands and managers. They just make for really fun stories. The added charity aspect is a nice touch and Sarah was a nice character for the story. I did think that some of the success of the band and events were somewhat extreme for a group of teenagers just starting out. It just wasn't quite as realistic as I was expecting in that regard.
There was some tension between the band members when one of them starts ditching practice and playing with another band. This was too glossed over. The outcome was overall satisfactory, but I think a bit more focus on this aspect could have helped give the story more of a realistic feel.
This was a fun read, but I did not find it extremely engaging or compelling. I think that many middle grade readers would definitely enjoy it and I would recommend it to this age group and those who like to read stories aimed at this age group.