Release Date: July 1st, 2015
Genres: Coming of Age, Contemporary, Friendship, Love & Romance, Young Adult
Frankie and Joely are best friends. They love each other like no one else can. But when a summer break in the country brings fresh distractions, simmering jealousies and festering secrets, can their friendship survive?
It’s the holidays and, together, Frankie and Joely board a train and escape the city and their mums for a week of freedom. But when Joely introduces Frankie to her country cousins, Thommo and Mack, it soon becomes clear that something other than the heat is getting under their skin. As the temperature rises and the annual New Years’ Eve party looms closer, local boy Rory stirs things up even more and secrets start to blister. Suddenly the girls’ summer getaway is not panning out how either of them imagined. Will they still be ‘Frankie and Joely’ by the end of their holiday?
Characters I could not deal with
FRANKIE AND JOELY is a very character driven novel, and unfortunately the main characters were people I had issues connecting with. They were just frustrating in various ways. Some of their thoughts and actions I didn’t agree with, or they’d say things that grate my nerves. The only characters I liked entirely were minor side characters like Joely’s Aunt and Uncle. Frankie did grow on me, but the rest of them ugh.
A focus on friendship
Books with good friendships can be few and far between so it’s always exciting to find a book that explores them. But it’s also scary because the friendships generally aren’t the focus of the contemporaries because it’s all sunshine and rainbows. There’s no room for development then. Franky and Joely’s friendship certainly isn’t easy.
What is communication?
For apparent best friends they two girls have a lot of bitchy things to say about each other, and annoyances. It astounded me they had been friends as long as they had. They also didn’t communicate. Seriously if they just spoke up more often none of the annoying situations would have happened. But I supposed if they started off perfect there would have been no room for growth.
I wish this wasn’t an exaggeration, but it isn’t. FRANKIE AND JOELY has a love pentagon. And because I didn’t really connect to any of the characters I couldn’t ship any of the possible ships. I had no patience for any of them. Plus some of the characters were arseholes and didn’t deserve anyone. And some of the parts of the love dilemma fell way too quickly for some of the other members for my liking.
Aussie, Aussie, Aussie
Another aspect of FRANKIE AND JOELY I liked was that it was set in rural Victoria! I haven’t read an Aussie novel in a while, and having been on a cattle farm just a few months ago it felt really authentic. The stinking summer heat, the slang, the culture was very familiar and relatable. It was nice to read.
Contemporaries have to be amazing for me to really love them and unfortunately FRANKIE AND JOELY didn’t hit the mark. The friendship and characters got on my nerves too often, almost resulted in me DNFing it.
I might have enjoyed it more if I wasn’t trying to read it in exams or if I was in the mood for a contemporary.