Friday, April 4, 2014

Twelve Steps by Veronica Bartles

Twelve Steps
by Veronica Bartles
Publisher: Swoon Romance
Release Date: 25th March 2014
Rate: Average+ (3,5 stars)

Sixteen-year-old Andi is tired of being a second-class sibling to perfect sister Laina. The only thing Andi’s sure she has going for her is her awesome hair. And even that is eclipsed by Laina's perfect everything else.
When Andi’s crush asks her to fix him up with Laina, Andi decides enough is enough, and devises a twelve-step program to wrangle the spotlight away from Laina and get the guy. 
Step 1: Admit she’s powerless to change her perfect sister, and accept that her life really, really sucks. 
Step 4: Make a list of her good qualities. She MUST have more than just great hair, right?
Step 7: Demand attention for more than just the way she screws things up. 
When a stolen kiss from her crush ends in disaster, Andi realizes that her twelve-step program isn’t working. Her prince isn’t as charming as she'd hoped, and the spotlight she’s been trying to steal isn’t the one she wants.
As Laina’s flawless façade begins to crumble, the sisters work together to find a spotlight big enough for both to shine.

Twelve Steps is for everyone who's ever felt second best, for those people with a gorgeous sister or friend that overshadows everyone else. Veronica Bartles wrote a funny, sweet and lovable story where Laina must stop being the second best of her sister, and she's willing to do anything!

Laina's in love with Jarod, but Jarod doesn't see her that way thanks to her gorgeous and innocent sister. Because she's a good friend, she tries to discover who her sister likes, and it turns out to be Shane, who's going out with Laina's ex-best friend, Rachel. So the master plan is helping her sister get her crush (aka Shane), so she can have Jarod for herself. Sounds like a good plan, right?

However, throughout the story Andi gets to truly know her sister and discover she's not as perfect as Andi thought. The two sisters get to spend more time together and the once "broken" bond starts to heal. In the meantime, Jarod seems to be willing to leave Laina behind so she can be happy with Shane. Losing Laina, means that now there's nothing between Andi and him. But how can Laina keep being the second best? She wants someone who loves her for herself, not being a second choice because her sister wasn't available.

As the story keeps going, we meet new characters, new awkward and funny situations, we will discover Laina's deep secret and we would know what Andi decides to do with her love life.

Twelve Steps is a clean read, with funny situations and with a character that has a strong and powerful personality. It reflects perfectly how someone must feel after being in love and end up rejected for your lovable sister, but always being there to be the second choice just in case the first plan doesn't work. Veronica Bartles brings some humor to the situation but putting her main character in some situations like when she has a place in the production of Cinderella, and she's one of the step-sisters and Jarod Prince Charming. 

What I liked about this book was Laina's personality. You could know just by reading her point of view that despite her not-so-lucky love life, she's a strong girl and secure of herself. She's not afraid to go after what she wants and she has to have some guts to play matchmaker for her sister. Her snarky comments and whatever-attitude create some wonderful and funny situations throughout the story.

I think that my problem was that there were an overwhelming amount of boys in the story. I couldn't place my heart with only one and I must confess that I was kind of confused. 

I also liked how this story changes from "my life sucks thanks to my sister just for being beautiful" to a more mature and rational aspect like understanding what's best for her sister and try to do the right thing. Also the author wrapped up everything, by giving Andi her shot at true love. Although, I would have like more of those moments (not saying who she ends up with, sorry!). And by the way, just saying that I'm team Dave all the way down and I didn't like how she treated him sometimes.

Overall, Twelve Steps is a hilarious, sweet and romantic YA story. Entwined and complicated relationships, a group of friends and a main character seeking her happy ever after along with some sister rivalry, this YA story will make you smile and think about what's like to be left as a second choice. If you like this type of stories, Twelve Steps is definitely your story!

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As the second of eight children and the mother of four, Veronica Bartles is no stranger to the ups and downs of sibling relationships. (She was sandwiched between the gorgeous-and-insanely-popular older sister and the too-adorable-for-words younger sister.) She uses this insight to write stories about siblings who mostly love each other, even while they’re driving one another crazy. When she isn’t writing or getting lost in the pages of her newest favorite book, Veronica enjoys knitting fabulous bags and jewelry out of recycled plastic bags and old VHS tapes, sky diving (though she hasn’t actually tried that yet), and inventing the world’s most delectable cookie recipes. TWELVE STEPS is Veronica Bartles's first novel.

Win (1) ebook of Twelve Steps & $10 Amazon gift card (INT)


  1. I come from a very large family, but I was usually the one stepping on everyone's toes! I had to I was at the end of the line! Hehe! Sounds like a fun read

    1. Hi Paij, I'm an only child and sometimes I miss this brotherly competition ;)
      I think you're going to like Twelve Steps ^^