Title: Top Ten Clues You’re Clueless
Author: Liz Czukas
Source: Gift from Christmas
Check this book out on Goodreads.
Top Five Things That Are Ruining Chloe’s Day
5) Working the 6:30 a.m. shift at GoodFoods Market
4) Crashing a cart into a customer’s car right in front of her snarky coworker Sammi
3) Trying to rock the “drowned rat” look after being caught in a snowstorm
2) Making zero progress with her crush, Tyson (see #3)
1) Being accused—along with her fellow teenage employees—of stealing upwards of $10,000
Chloe would rather be anywhere than locked in work jail (aka the break room) with five of her coworkers . . . even if one of them is Tyson. But if they can band together to clear their names, what looks like a total disaster might just make Chloe’s list of Top Ten Best Moments. (Source: Goodreads)
On Christmas Eve Chloe and her fellow teen employees are accused of stealing around $10,000 from a charity box. Chloe and these employees don’t necessarily get along, which means things don’t turn out great when they’re locked up together until the police arrive to investigate. But maybe they will, and maybe Chloe and her new allies will be able to solve just who it is that really stole the money, and why they’re being framed.
I have loved Liz Czukas ever since I read her previous book Ask Again Later, which was absolutely fabulous. I really enjoyed Top Ten Clues You’re Clueless. I didn’t love it the way I loved Ask Again Later, but I think it was a great book and definitely worth a read. I found the plot a little less than plausible. I also found the characters generally unlikeable? I didn’t really even start to care about them until the very end of the book, which is kind of bad. I think the humour and writing was just as good as the previous book, just the chemistry and the plot lacked a bit.
So the main issue I had with the plot was that it was hugely implausible. They are being held against their will, the plot really hinges on that. And yet, what’s happening to them is kind of, y’know, illegal. They can’t be held there when they don’t have any evidence, first of all, but the cops aren’t even there. So the fact that his happens, makes the whole book kind of…pointless. A lot of what happened just confused and annoyed me, and didn’t help me buy into the story. Don’t get me wrong, it’s fun and the writing is great and I love Czukas’s style, so I enjoyed it all, I just felt annoyed with the plot.
I also had a little trouble with the characters. I didn’t really feel for them until the end of the book. This includes Chloe. I found Chloe’s naivety annoying rather than sweet or endearing. I found the other characters lacking ambition and kind of aggravating because they completely ignored everything Chloe said, even though it was so obviously important and relevant. I think it was hard to like the characters because they were all really closed off, including the narrating character Chloe. The only things we really know about her are her problems with her mother, and her crush on Tyson. That’s about all. There are a lot of unexplored pathways here that could have been pursued, like the mental health issues that Chloe seems to exhibit in her obsessive list making. The fact that it’s a problem is mentioned, but not really addressed. Which, I think, it should have been.
I think that despite the problems I had with the book it was a fun and hugely enjoyable read. I think the things I found to be problems can be overlooked quite easily, they’re more personal nitpicks rather than major issues. I liked this book, and can recommend it. I would more highly recommend Czukas’s Ask Again Later.
Have you read Top Ten Clues You’re Clueless? Let me know your thoughts in the comments!
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