Monday, July 8, 2013

Review: Confessions of an Almost-Girlfriend (Confessions #2) by Louise Rozett

Firstly, thanks to Harlequin Teen Australia for this NetGalley <3

Confessions of an Almost-Girlfriend (Confessions, #2)

Date Read: June 17 – July 3 2013
Release Date: June 25th 2013
Publisher: Harlequin Teen Australia
Source: NetGalley
Genre: Contemporary
My rating: 

“Rose Zarelli has big plans for sophomore year—everything is going to be different. This year, she’s going to be the talented singer with the killer voice, the fabulous girl with the fashionista best friend, the brainiac who refuses to let Jamie Forta jerk her around...

...but if she’s not careful, she’s also going to be the sister who misses the signals, the daughter who can only think about her own pain, the “good girl” who finds herself in mid-scandal again (because no good deed goes unpunished) and possibly worst of all...the almost-girlfriend.

When all else fails, stop looking for love and go find yourself. “


“Something inside me falls away, something hard and restrictive and fearful. It crumbles, disintegrates and vanishes.”

An absolutely fantastic sequel to Confessions of an Angry Girl, this is definitely one of the finer contemporaries out there that really stand out and demand attention once you start reading it. I still think the Confessions series is a lighter read compared to others I’ve read, but it does deal with very serious and controversial issues. Confessions #1 was good, I enjoyed it and didn’t find anything wrong with it, but it didn’t particularly stand out enough for me to give it anything more than 3.5 stars. Confessions #2 on the other hand was so much more sophisticated and I think Rozett really pushed her boundaries by adding homosexuality to the already long list of controversial issues Confessions #1 dealt with. And I must say it was a great achievement on her part.

“Sweet little Rose has been replaced by new Rose…”

Our protagonist Rose somehow manages to always get the short end of the stick, and land herself in the most precarious of positions. Despite telling herself that she wouldn’t end up in the principal’s office sophomore year, she does just that… Multiple times. And really it’s not the poor girl’s fault but rather she’s in the wrong place at the wrong time. I felt so bad for Rose and I could totally relate to her conflicted feelings and thoughts – what should she say? Should she even say anything at all? On the one hand, speaking would explain why she was in the situation she was in, on the other, would it be tattling? I absolutely love the voice Rozett has continued to give Rose but with added growth. And Rose grows so much throughout the book; she starts out as this girl who has serious body image issues (this was actually quite concerning and one of my biggest problems with Rose) but she comes to eventually accept herself and agree with what she sees in the mirror. I think what I loved most about Rose here was her deeper level of understanding of those around her, and of herself. Rose finally understands how her mum truly feels about the whole memorial website, she understands that there are more important things in the world than Jamie Forta and she finally, FINALLY realised that not only is it important to respect others, but really to respect yourself, and that she deserved respect from others too. I still think she should have spoken up for herself at times and didn’t always agree with her choices, but Zarrelli is learning from her mistakes and that’s all I can ask for in a character.

“Actually, what it really means is that you don’t respect me. And if you don’t respect me, then I don’t have time for you.”

Jamie Forta. How do I even begin to describe this boy? Frustratingly mysterious, closed off and one of the hottest boys you’ll ever kiss in an army jacket. The guy was like a freaking jack-in-the-box. He’d just randomly pop up in places, frustrate the hell out of me, then kiss the hell out of Rose and just up and leave. Behind that icy façade I think he’s one of the most troubled male love-interests I’ve ever read. I liked how Rozett revealed little bits of him when he was vulnerable – his past is shrouded in mystery, but slowly, as the fog lifts, his troubled home life, his relationships with his parents and those around him (especially the Deladdos) come to light. But even so, there’s so much left unsaid and I was left wondering what he was thinking half the time. If anybody ever managed to get in his head, I think they’d probably faint from the onslaught of thoughts. This boy is like a million piece jigsaw puzzle that’s a big jumble and nobody can find any pieces that fit together. Oh and did I mention that amongst this complicated mess, he’s extremely sexy? Because he is this totally complicated, sexy and swoony guy. And I would love it if he lent me his army jacket.

“… Suddenly his lips are on mine, hard and fast, knocking the air right out of my lungs. His kiss ricochets throughout my entire body in a nanosecond… One hand is in my hair, the other sliding down my lower back.”

What I really looked out for in this sequel was the development of the secondary characters. And woah have they improved! They’re all far from perfect but I was extremely pleased that they all finally had their own “thing” going on. Robert (and Holly) with his acting, Rose’s mum finally moving a step forward and Tracy! Oh I hated Tracy so much in Confessions #1 but I really, really liked her here. I think other than Rose, Tracy has shown the biggest growth amongst the characters. She doesn’t let petty things get to her anymore; I loved how she took advantage of a bad situation and made it her own. She’s still the same bubbly, fashion loving girl, but so much more mature and responsible. She totally shone.

“She found her thing and is already figuring out how to do it.”

Plot-wise, there were so many different things going on but the theme I think Rozett wanted to really highlight was one’s sexuality, specifically, homosexuality. The introduction of Conrad Deladdo being gay sets off the events for the book and most of the situations that get Rose in hot water. I just want to say I really hate Conrad. I mean, he gave Rose SO MUCH SHIT when she was only trying to help him. From the beginning I could see why but it really didn’t excuse his actions. He took all his bitterness from being bullied out on Rose, and by god was this boy bitter. Like black coffee bitter. He needed to grow up, seriously. Anyway, back to the issue at hand. I thought Rozett raised a really good point about tolerance – that although schools think they might be helping, at times they can make the situation worse and end up taking the bullying outside of school. It also raises the question of how to prevent bullying and promote tolerance and acceptance amongst school kids. It’s definitely a continuous battle and I thought the difficulty of the situation was highlighted very well.

“Who do you want to be? Do you want to be the coward who is so afraid of people who are not like him, who is so narrow-minded and small, that he attacks out of fear?”

Overall, this was fantastically executed. Rozett’s writing has become more fluid and eloquent, and her willingness to push boundaries have proved she can tackle just about any issue. The ending was spectacular – it showed the importance of acceptance, self-respect, independence, and of doing what’s right for one’s self. I’m just so glad I didn’t go to Union High. I don’t think I’d be able to handle any of that crap. PLEASE TELL ME THERE’S A BOOK 3 THOUGH.

“It’s me. This what I want. This is who I am. And I am finally here.”


  1. I love love this review Jaz!! This book was just amazing and I have to agree with every single point you made. Rose came such a long way from the first book, I felt sorry for the poor girl on so many occasions but appreciated every single decision she made especially the one at the end. I really hope we get to see more on Jamie and Rose in another book. Wonderful review! By the way you may have a fight on your hands over Jamie and his army jacket! ;)

    1. We totally need a book 3 don't we?

      Thanks for the comment <3

      And um NO Jamie and his army jacket is mine :3

  2. I know Jasprit loves this series, lol, there's her comment above. This sounds like a good series, but I think the whole situation with Jaime would frustrate me. He seems to be a small part of the whole story, but still. Wonderful review, Jaz! :)

    1. I think you would really enjoy this Rachel! Jamie and the whole situation CAN be frustrating but that's what makes it so worth it when... stuff... happens (;

  3. If there's no book three, I'll murder someone.

    Can't get enough of Rose, love her SO MUCH! We are like soul mates >.< And Jamie was pretty awesome but his on and off behaviour was irritating. :| the siding characters were just as good!

    Fantastic (and well detailed, lol) review! <33

    1. Yessssss everybody agrees there needs to be a book 3! Jamie is mysterious I love him and I just NEED him and Rose UGH!

      Thank you for your lovely comment <3