This is a book review for Girl With Guitar by Caisey Quinn, available here:
It’s the first of the Kylie Ryans books.
4* – Light but good.
I actually really enjoyed this book which is strange because it has so many fiction tropes it’s almost one long cliche lol. It’s kind of like a cross between an episode of Nashville and one of Olivia Cunning’s rockstars books.
Kylie gets kicked out of her home by her wicked stepmother (cliche #1) and uses what little money she has left to go to Nashville where she hopes to achieve her dream of becoming a country music star to honour the memory of her dead daddy. She ends up as a barmaid (cliche #2) at the only place she’s been able to get into open mic night. She gets up on stage and absolutely rocks it, doing a funked up version of a popular track, not realising that the artist himself is in the audience.
Enter Trace Corbin. He’s a gorgeous rockstar (cliche #3) with a drinking problem (cliche #4), a history of unreliable and slutty behaviour (cliche #5) and a dark past (cliche #6).
They don’t like each other much at first, but as time goes on, the chemistry starts to overcome it (cliche #7).
So far, so formulaic.
So why was this good? First off, there are some places where the writing is really beautiful. There were a lot of typos throughout the book, but I totally forgave them all for the song lyrics. Some of those were really quite special.
Kylie, the main character, has sass and a strong sense of morality, which I really liked about her. She’s not afraid to do the right thing, even when it’s going to end up hurting her. I liked her emotional connection with her late father.
There was a cast of good supporting characters, including Pauly, the tour manager, Trace’s sisters and Kylie’s friend Lulu. Tonya, the barmaid, was also a nice character, opening up a small subplot that ran underneath Trace’s external douchebaggery to show he’s actually kind of a decent guy.
I didn’t give it five stars for a couple of reasons. The first was the subplot with Darla, Kylie’s stepmom. Something about it just didn’t sit right with me, although it was handled well considering.
The second was that the book just seemed to skim the surface of things. It was quite a shallow read. It could have been fleshed out with an awful lot of character for both Trace and Kylie, considering they both had dark back stories. Considering the rich seam of angst in there, it should have been more fully explored, especially when it came to Trace’s drinking.
On the whole it was a good read though. I would recommend it, especially if you like Nashville 🙂
It’s also worth mentioning that this book is free to download right now so fly my little book fairies, fly and 1 click!