Sunday, April 15, 2012

Rock On: A story of guitars, gigs, girls, and a brother (not necessarily in that order)

Title: Rock On: A story of guitars, gigs, girls, and a brother (not necessarily in that order)
Author: Denise Vega
Published: March 2012
Synopsis from Goodreads

Ori Taylor is the lead singer, guitarist, and songwriter of the Band To Be Named Later, a garage band he started with his friends. After years of being known only as the kid brother of sports star Del, Ori is looking forward to stepping out of his older brother's shadow, learning to perform in public, and rocking the Battle of the Bands contest. Oh, and maybe finally working up the nerve to talk to a girl in person instead of just over e-mail. But when Del suddenly returns from college, he expects Ori to step back into his role of little brother, just when Ori is starting to come into his own.

With his confidence wavering, will Ori be able to overcome his stage fright and lead the band to rock glory? Will the Band To Be Named Later ever get a real name? Will their best performances remain in the garage?

Denise Vega's deft exploration of brothers, bands, friends, and crushes promises to have readers tuning in page after page, because among all the ups and downs of being a teen, one thing's for sure: We all just want to rock on.

I have a problem with books written by women that are told by boys. Especially if it is told in 1st Person POV. I think the reason might be because I have a son who is a freshman in high school. I'm always comparing the literary boy with the real thing. And folks... my son doesn't have a swoony sensitive bone in his body. Sometimes I'll read passages out of these books and he just laughs at me and tells me that he would NEVER think like that.

But is it because my son isn't musical?

Nah... he has friends that are.

I personally think it is because this book was written for girls.


Because I don't think a boy would be caught dead reading a book title: Rock On: A story of guitars, gigs, girls, and a brother (not necessarily in that order)

So, why did I want to read it?

Well, duh!! Cuz I'm not a boy.
Found the cover super cute.
A rock story sounded right up my alley.

But why isn't it for boys?

Well, Ori is the lead singer/guitarist for a high school garage band. He's been playing since he was a tater tot and is saving up cash to buy a rockin' premo guitar.

Nothing wrong with this.


It's the way he thinks. And this is what irked me. He calls himself things like King of Dorks inside his head and he thinks about girl's eyelashes and what?!!???!! Makes really awesome cheese dip and super loves his brother and argyle socks.... I just couldn't imagine my son thinking this way. And this is why I think Ori sounded more like a girl and not really a bit like a boy. This is also why I think girls would dig this book way super more than boys.

In a way this book reminded me of a Disney Channel show. You know how the boys act all dorky on those things? Lately, I have watched my fair share of those because that's what my son's doctor has playing in her office. I'm always looking at him and asking, "Do you dig this?" And he rolls his eyes at me because I'm asking him a lame question and he just tells me the show is stupid and the Disney Channel is only for girls.

(note: The opinions in that paragraph do not reflect the opinions of Greta is Erikasbuddy. They are of her son and he is apparently not down with the Mouse)

Now, don't get me wrong... it's not a bad book. I did have a hard time connecting with the characters but I believe that is because I am super duper picky when the lead is a boy. Buts.... I loved loved loved how the story was also told in blogposts and texts. That was super clever and tre' modern! Love love loved that!

My prognosis?
Give Rock On: A story of guitars, gigs, girls, and a brother (not necessarily in that order) a spin... but I'm kinda doubting Little Freddy is going to want to pick it up. Freda will dig it, though!

**Paranormal Wastelands would like to thank the folks at Little, Brown Books for supplying us with an arc of this book.

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