Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Violet GrenadeViolet Grenade by Victoria Scott
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Violet Grenade is not what I was expecting at all. I received a free copy via NetGalley and Entangled Publishing. There literally seems to not have been a time when this book lets the reader relax. Domino is seventeen and has been living on the streets since she was sixteen. She is sharing a squat house with her buddy Dizzy for the last year. They look out for each other and do most things together until one night they get separated and Dizzy ends up in lockup. Domino does not have the money or even anything worth enough to pawn so that she can bail Dizzy out. When she leaves the lockup to try and find a way to bail Dizzy out she runs into Madam Karina who offers her what I think is too good to be true. But, when a person is desperate and despite having lived on the streets for a year, naïve, they will grasp on the first option offered to them. I must admit I was surprised she would get in the car with a stranger.
Domino finds herself outside of a small town in Texas where it seems that everyone knows or works for Madam Karina in some way. She starts having the stars knocked out of her eyes about the opportunity she is offered after her first paycheck. Though she makes two good friends the bulk of the other girls working for Madam Karina seem to be against her and do everything they can to ensure she doesn’t succeed because Madam Karina offers the “top girl” the one thing that Domino wants her own house as Madam Karina’s successor. Despite the negative vibe, she is starting to have about the home where most of the girls appear to worship Madam Karina, Domino, along with the elusive Wilson, starts to catch on quickly and getting out of that house is not going to be anywhere near as easy as it was getting in there.
Violet Grenade keeps the reader interested. We must know what will happen if she gets cornered. Even Dizzy appears to know it is not a good thing but, the reader is drawn into learning about Wilson throughout the book. Even when we get to the end you might still be left thinking, who in the heck is Wilson? By the end of the book you realize that despite what Wilson appears to be you literally find yourself hoping Wilson whoops everyone’s butt. I tend to steer away from books where it looks like adults might be victimizing children or teens. It is bad enough when it is an adult, but, children are more vulnerable than most adults. Some street kids are less vulnerable due to experience especially when they have someone like Dizzy and other neighborhood people looking out for them, which appeared to be the case with Domino. There were times I thought that Domino still had a bit of green on her, then later I though nah, she is wise, just slower to respond. We learn as the book goes on why this dichotomy exists and it just makes the book that more thrilling. The big question is “who in the heck is Wilson?”. I’m wishing kids that are bullied had someone a bit like Wilson that would help them stand up for themselves, not to the extreme that Wilson did, but, enough to stop the victimization that is so rampant in schools, heck in any situation where there is a group of people there seems to be someone that victimizes others, even in smaller ways. This book is a tip of the hat to standing up for yourself or maybe even for others when they need a boost!

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