Review: Down With the Shine by Kate Karyus Quinn

Down With the Shine

There's a reason they say "be careful what you wish for." Just ask the girl who wished to be thinner and ended up smaller than Thumbelina, or the boy who asked for "balls of steel" and got them-literally. And never wish for your party to go on forever. Not unless you want your guests to be struck down by debilitating pain if they try to leave.

These are things Lennie only learns when it's too late-after she brings some of her uncles' moonshine to a party and toasts to dozens of wishes, including a big wish of her own: to bring back her best friend, Dylan, who was abducted and murdered six months ago.

Lennie didn't mean to cause so much chaos. She always thought her uncles' moonshine toast was just a tradition. And when they talked about carrying on their "important family legacy," she thought they meant good old-fashioned bootlegging.

As it turns out, they meant granting wishes. And Lennie has just granted more in one night than her uncles would grant in a year.

Now she has to find a way to undo the damage. But once granted, a wish can't be unmade...

This book threw me - I mean really threw me, It starts out with Lennie telling us about the murder-robbing crime spree, then cut to her finding out that her best friend Dru is dead. Forgive me for thinking that this was going to be a pretty bleak story - especially after I read Quinn's Another Little Piece a couple of years back and that was a very dark book,

Aha, but Quinn managed to completely throw me for a loop when she cuts to the present day where she is gearing up to go to a party. She isn't really invited, but she has her uncles' (her.guardians) illegally brewed moonshine with her. Because a party ain't a part without potato alcohol of course. She managed to get into the party and hands out freebies of the moonshine, asking everyone taking a shot to make a wish first - it's her family tradition - then she wakes up in the morning to find out that everyone's wishes came true.

Including the guy who turns everything he touches into cheetos, or the girl who wished the party would never end, or Lennie, who wishes her dead best friend back to life. She can't just wish their wishes away though, because everyone only gets one wish.

It's an absolutely ridiculous premise and is so unexpectedly funny and lighthearted that I just didn't know how to take it. The mayhem in the never ending party was hilarious and Lennie's uncles were great fodder for laughs. Of course, as funny as it all is, it all takes a turn for the worst. People die (in hilarious ways, but also they die) and people go crazy and mayhem turns into pandemonium and Lennie has to find a way to end it all, even if it means facing down her crime boss father.

As soon as Leonard Cash (Lennie's father) comes into the story, it gets quite dark and thrilling. Once again, curveballs are thrown and I was addicted.

I don't usually give an introduction into the plot in my reviews but but it felt necessary with Down With the Shine. It has such a bizarre tone to it that I felt like I needed some background to it.

I can't really say this book had the most absorbing characters or the world's most original romance, but what it did have was an amazing author, a funny plot and some unexpected depth. This book was 300+ pages long yet I devoured it in two hours, and I will honestly say it's one of the best books I have read recently.

It's just so.... different!

Book released 26th April by HarperTeen
Book received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

1 comment

  1. I've been curious about this book but was waiting to see some reviews before deciding whether or not I wanted to give it a try. It sounds so unique and I'm glad to hear that there's a humorous side to it.

    Speaking of volcanoes (lol), I was watching Strangest Weather on Earth last night (because I love weather shows) and there was a short story about the world's only black lava volcano. It was so cool! The lava was black and inky instead of red. And after it rained it would turn into a white powdery substance creating a great contrast of colors. Apparently it also emits the most carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, more than any other volcano.

    I hope you really do like volcanoes otherwise I totally just sound like a weirdo (lol).

    New follower btw :)


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