Monday, 21 July 2014

Stella by Helen Eve

ISBN: 9781250048172
Publisher: Macmillan
Pages: 368

Being popular is all that matters.

Seventeen year old Stella Hamilton is the star blazing at the heart of Temperley High. Leader of the maliciously exclusive elite, she is envied and lusted after in equal measure. And in the Hamilton tradition, she is in the final stage of a six year campaign to achieve her destiny: love with her equally popular male equivalent, and a triumphant election to Head Girl.

Caitlin Clarke has lived a quietly conformist life in New York City – until, with the collapse of her parents’ marriage, she’s sent across the Atlantic for a strict English boarding school education. As soon as she arrives at Temperley, she learns that the only important rules are the unwritten ones. The upper echelons of her new society are marked not by neat dresses and Kate Middleton hair, but by skinny jeans, cigarettes and scars.  It's a world of the beautiful and the dangerous, and acceptance means staying on the right side of the most beautiful and dangerous of them all.

As Caitlin’s popularity grows, she discovers that not everyone is happy under Stella’s rule – that it might finally be time for a new order among the Stars and the civilians. Fighting the system, however, means Caitlin must tread the same dark path as Stella, where absolute power and absolute destruction are only a breath away . . .

I received an ARC of Stella by Helen Eve for review from Macmillan, which I really enjoyed reading! 
Stella by Helen Eve seemed a bit similar to the films Mean Girls and Wild Child at first, but as the book progressed it began to remind me more and more of Sara Shepard's Pretty Little Liars. At some points Helen Eve's Stella became quite dark and odd. 
This book is told alternately from two perspectives, Stella's & Caitlin's. Stella, who the book mainly focuses on, is the "Queen Bee"at Temperley High boarding school, whilst Caitlin is the new girl. 
Stella is part of the "Stars" and her current boyfriend (and ex-boyfriend) are part of the "Stripes". The "Stars" and the "Stripes" were a play on the fact that Caitlin is from America and the American flag is sometimes referred to in terms of stars and stripes.
I didn't really have a favourite character, as all of the main characters at one point or another tended to change their minds and loyalties with the weather.
Although, I like the mass market cover of Stella and think that it represents the story within well, I still prefer my ARC cover. The ARC cover of Stella is quite simplistic but it places more emphasis on the byline, "Being popular is all that matters", which appears to be the underlying theme throughout Stella for all the main characters.
Overall, even though I enjoyed reading Stella by Helen Eve and would probably read another book by her, I wouldn't necessarily widely recommend this book. It was a bit of an acquired taste really, however I would recommend it to those who enjoyed reading books like Torn by Cat Clarke and This Is Not Forgiveness by Celia Rees.

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