Nell knows a secret about her perfect, beautiful sister Layla. If she tells, it could blow their world apart.
When Nell and Layla were little, Nell used to call them Nellaya. Because to Nell, there was no difference between where she started and her adored big sister ended. They’re a unit; divorce made them rely on each other early on, so when one pulls away, what is the other to do? But now, Nell’s a freshman in high school and Layla is changing, secretive. And then Nell discovers why. Layla is involved with one of their teachers. And even though Nell tries to support Layla, to understand that she’s happy and in love, Nell struggles with her true feelings: it’s wrong, and she must do something about it.
The publisher gave me a copy of this book to read and review (from NetGalley). This has, in no way, altered my opinion of the book and what is written below is a 100% honest review.
This novel was surprising for me and I did not expect liking it as much as I did! We Are the Goldens is a funny, heartwarming story of two very similar sisters, Nell and Layla. Nell looks up to her older sister, but Layla is harboring a dark secret that both tests Nell’s friendship with her sister and her own personal character. Plus, it’s a coming-of-age novel with which everyone can relate. It was a quick read (you could read it in about a day) and definitely worth it.
PG-13: Definitely for the age range of 14-18. Few bad words, mentions of sex/alcohol/drugs, but nothing is explicit.
This book was written in a really interesting point of view. The whole novel reads like a letter that Nell writes to her older sister. I felt like this was an excellent choice of POV by Dana Reinhardt! It was yet another aspect of this story that set it apart from other novels that I have been reading recently. Also, I absolutely fell in love with Nell as a narrator. I never tired of accompanying her through this novel; I never became bored by her refreshing and quirky personality! What would I have done if my sister was in a destructive relationship with her art teacher? How would I have handled everything? This novel made me question those things. I’m a freshman in college, but I felt like the peer pressure that Nell underwent as a freshman in high school was completely realistic and I loved reading about how she dealt with the ups and downs of high school. Nell was a breath of fresh air! I loved her! It was a joy to travel with her through her character development and it was evident that she was beginning to find herself by the end of the novel. Even the romantic elements of this novel were fantastic and handled well! I’m freaking out! I love book surprises!
I wouldn’t say that there was anything I particularly didn’t like about this novel. I’d say that Nell’s dead friends, Parker and Duncan Creed were a bit confusing for me; their background and the manner in which they died were a bit unclear (or possibly I missed something?). I didn’t feel like they subtracted from the overall feeling of the novel, though.
Overall, I give it 4/5!