When Casey McCloy steps into the elegant Bramford building, she’s overwhelmed. Fresh from the Midwest, she’s moved to New York’s Upper East Side to live with her grandmother and attend the prestigious Meadowlark Academy. Here all that matters is who you know. The girl to know is Madison Macallister: popular, pretty, platinumblond. She’s not just Casey’s new classmate and neighbor; she’s an icon. So Casey aims to get in with Madison and her gorgeous gal-pals from the start. As the reigning queen of coolness, Madison is capable of destroying reputations with one welltimed whisper. Better to be on her good side.
But after a city-haute makeover from her new frenemy Madison, Casey is wearing the right clothes, saying the right things, and meeting the right people—including Drew, the boy-about-town who Madison thinks belongs to her and her alone.
(Can't quote anything from the book because I have an ARC (ahh! I feel so fancy saying that!) and the publisher says to "check quotes against a bound copy before putting them in a review". Don't have a bound copy yet, so skipping Memorable Quotes for now!)
But, wait, why is this book receiving a 7 if I didn't like the beginning?
Well. I kept reading. Things fell into place, characters began making more sense to me, and I just felt like the previous fog in the atmosphere of the story lifted. The book did a full 180, and I started to like most characters and understand them. While designer-brand name dropping doesn't typically bother me, toward the second half of the book Jennifer Banash stopped its frequent use and the book flowed a lot better.
What did I particularly like? The story is told in 3rd person limited, and each chapter was centered around one of the five main characters. Phoebe and Sophie, two lackeys--you know, the girls who flank the popular girl wherever she goes--were actually not lackeys at all, but fully substantiated characters with important roles and interesting back stories. The protagonist, Casey, was well-defined. Drew, the one male in the bunch, had a captivating voice that rang true to a guy's. And Madison, well, Madison is girl we all love to hate so we excuse her utter sense of superiority. :)
Do I recommend The Elite? Sure. Will I be reading anymore in this series? Yes, definitely. Give it a shot. Jennifer Banash has created a very promising set of books right here.
Book shall be released on June 3rd, so mark your calendars!