The Fixer, by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
First of all, I must confess that I LOVE LOVE LOVE political thrillers. Naturally, I had to read The Fixer– how could I resist?
I have read some of Barnes’ books in the past. Some were great, but some were also really disappointing so I had mixed feelings when I started this book. As Barnes started amping up the action, all my doubt for this book was washed away, and I became completely engrossed in the political intrigue surrounding the characters. There was only one teeny tiny complication: The Fixer takes place in the USA, and I know next to nothing about US politics. I mean… I didn’t even know the term “West Wing” existed until I read this book. Surprisingly, my lack of knowledge about US politics didn’t hinder my ability to understand the characters or the plot.
The concept of a “fixer” really piqued my interest, and I liked the incorporation of this profession in the book.
“You’re telling me that my sister is a professional problem solver?” I asked tightly. “She just goes around, solving other people’s problems? How is that even an occupation?”
“Supply and demand?” Vivvie suggested. “Around here, we call them fixers.”
There were many twists in this book that I didn’t see coming. For example, the twist with Ivy and Tess was completely unexpected because I thought that the false façade that Barnes set up logically made sense. The plot was also wonderful. Chapters in this book were short (in my opinion), but they were effective. The only real issue I have with this book is the pacing. At the beginning, it was paced rather well. When it got to the end, I felt like it was a little rushed, which didn’t allow for enough elaboration for the actual climax of the book.
Another thing I loved about this book was the slight tinge of humour which was inserted via sarcasm and Asher.
“Excellent form,” Asher commented. “It’s too bad the stone got eaten by an alligator after the second bounce.”
Thalia slugged him. “It did not!”
“Sadly, it did.”
“Henry! Tell him it didn’t.”
There was a beat of silence. “I see no alligators,” Henry allowed.
“Et tu, Henry?” Asher held a hand to his chest. Henry didn’t bat an eye. He was clearly used to the dramatics.
A Shakespeare reference!? What can I say? Asher is bae.
I really liked Tess as a main character. She is a skilled slitherer-outer, a good friend, and a protector of victims. Like a lot of my favourite characters, Tess was willing to sacrifice something for those whom she loved. I admire a character’s ability to do that a lot. Tess was also a round character. Underneath her poker face, Tess has insecurities and worries (for gramps). This is something that I was able to see clearly since this book is written in first pov.
This was such a refreshing young adult book. I haven’t read such a riveting YA story in a very long time. I applaud Barnes for writing this marvellous book. Now I need the sequel!!!!!
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