Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Racing Savannah by Miranda Kenneally

Racing Savannah by Miranda Kenneally
Release Date – December 3, 2013
Publisher Website – Raincoast Books/Sourcebooks Fire
Publisher Social Media -  Twitter
Pages - 304 pages
My Rating- 4/5
**received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review**

Here is the Goodreads synopsis
They’re from two different worlds.

He lives in the estate house, and she spends most of her time in the stables helping her father train horses. In fact, Savannah has always been much more comfortable around horses than boys. Especially boys like Jack Goodwin—cocky, popular and completely out of her league. She knows the rules: no mixing between the staff and the Goodwin family. But Jack has no such boundaries.

With her dream of becoming a horse jockey, Savannah isn’t exactly one to follow the rules either. She’s not going to let someone tell her a girl isn’t tough enough to race. Sure, it’s dangerous. Then again, so is dating Jack…
If I had to sum up my reaction to Racing Savannah in one sentence I would probably chose 'Miranda Kenneally does it again'. Four books in and she's still creating wonderful characters, and still writing some of the most touching contemporary fiction out there.

I loved Jordan. I ADORED Parker, and was lukewarm on Kate. Savannah brings back the love in a big way. Her drive, her desire, and her unwillingness to let anyone else determine her life made me instantly root for her happiness. She respected herself, and others, and wasn't about to compromise in what she believed in. A wonderful message that comes across  in not only the upstairs/downstairs romance, but her love of horse jockeying as well. She is someone that many teens will see themselves in. She's falling in love for the first time. She has to find herself, and in doing so learn what that means for her family, her future and for herself. It's a story about growing up, and everyone can relate to Savannah in that respect.

Jack Goodwin is anything but your typical rich, privileged kid. He, like Savannah, has determination. He wants to do right by his father's farm, and learn to run it successfully. He avoids the stereotypical attributes of his status and instead came across as down to earth. He and Savannah have an easy nature with each other, and their relationship feels authentic. The have obstacles to overcome together, and apart that shape and define their relationship. These obstacles make the relationship that much more worth while, both for the reader and the characters. If you like your romance on the realistic, and sweet side this book will be sure to please.

Family is always interwoven into Miranda's storylines. Family plays a huge part in Savannah's life, and they are a factor in many of her choices. Rather than having the usual 'missing parent' syndrome that is so often prevalent in Young Adult novels, it's embraced in all of Miranda's books. It's something that I adore about the writing, and how easily they are factored into the story. Racing Savannah showed that family can be supportive, stifling, loving, smothering, and your biggest supporters all at once. Savannah's father, and his new wife, both want what is best for her, and I anticipate may remind some people of their own families.

A dose of the familiar creates a feeling of warm comfort. Getting to see beloved characters and see how they are doing is one of the delights of these companion novels. Racing Savannah is no exception. As these cameos are part of the charm I won't spoil who makes an appearance, but long time readers will be rewarded. This aspect of these novels allows the reader to feel immersed in the story immediately. These novels part of the reason companions are working their way into my heart. Miranda does them so well, and interweaves them flawlessly so that the reader can't help but feel like they're part of Hundred Oaks themselves.

Miranda Keneally keeps providing true to life characters, honest plots, and constantly good writing. Racing Savannah is another brilliant companion in a quickly growing world that will keep readers coming back time and time again.

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