REVIEW: Genuine Fraud, E. Lockhart

Thursday, 8 November 2018

Imogen is a runaway heiress, an orphan, a cook, and a cheat. Jule is a fighter, a social chameleon, and an athlete. An intense friendship. A disappearance. A murder, or maybe two. A bad romance, or maybe three. Blunt objects, disguises, blood, and chocolate. The American dream, superheroes, spies, and villains. A girl who refuses to give people what they want from her. A girl who refuses to be the person she once was.

Eck! What a disappointment. After loving E. Lockhart’s We Were Liars a few years ago, the degree to which I disliked Genuine Fraud came as more than a bit of a shock. Firstly, there were far too many descriptions about the main character’s appearance (why on earth do I need to know the colour of the eyeshadow she was wearing?!) for a novel that was supposedly trying to critique the beauty pre-occupation in regards to the role of women in spy novels. Secondly, and most importantly, it was trying FAR too hard to be intersectional.
I know, I don’t who I am anymore either. Have I been kidnapped? Has my brain been warped? Am I trying to alert you to the fact that I am in danger?
No to all three.
Instead, the inclusion of intersectionality that should have sent the novel straight up to the very top of my favourite book’s list, left it to fall on its face. And that is simply because it didn’t feel at all as though E Lockhart cared about any of the things that would have made this novel truly inclusive and awesome but, just instead, she had googled what things young women are passionate about nowadays and pasted in meaningless sentiments.
It felt cheap, empty. It felt as though all of the meaning of all the things that so many people work so hard every day to change had been sucked out, only to then be sold back to us in a meaningless, commercialised package.
And although many things make me angry, this probably makes me the most of all.

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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