Book Review: Golden by Jessi Kirby

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Seventeen-year-old Parker Frost may be a distant relative of poet Robert Frost, but she has never taken the road less travelled. Valedictorian and quintessential good girl, she’s about to graduate high school without ever having kissed her crush or broken the rules. So when fate drops a mystery in her lap – one that might be the key to uncovering the truth about a town tragedy – she decides to take a chance…

…It’s not actually making the choice that takes courage. It’s facing it afterward.
– p. 267



Once again Jessi Kirby has delivered a wonderfully soulful YA novel that leaves you hankering for the road less travelled – a few precious moments unlike all the rest – and a chance to change your own perceptions. If you’re looking for a book that resonates, this is it.

Parker Frost’s dad has left her with a lasting love of literature, so each chapter begins with a quotation, poem title or other literary reference, which set a wonderful tone for the novel and of course there was lots of Robert Frost:

In three words I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life. It goes on.

I liked Parker. She had the clear cut edges of a Jennifer Echols heroine, the thoughtfulness and maturity that characterises Jessi’s novels and a down to earth persona most bookish teens will instantly relate to. The secondary characters were well drawn, especially Kat, her straight shooter best friend.

Kat shrugs. “Some things need to be said. And sometimes they require strong words.” For Kat, this is true. The real measure of how passionate she is about something is whether she invokes an f-bomb.
– p.200

The ‘secondary’ narrator of this novel was Julianna Farnetti’s diary. Her relationship with Orion felt somewhat contrived, but I liked the dual timeline effect of these passages, and her character, a lot. I wish we’d learned something about her life before she moved to Summit.

I’m a sucker for romance, so I appreciated the inclusion of Trevor Collin’s character and although it was only a sideline I was happy with what I got! I’m not sure the resolution of the ‘mystery’ portion of the story was very realistic, but Golden’s shelved as fiction not non-fiction…

I found this punchier than Jessi’s previous work as her flowery descriptions were somewhat streamlined. I think it’s her best novel yet.


My Rating: ☼☼☼☼


Golden's beautiful raised spine.

Golden’s beautiful raised spine.

Unique chapter headers.

Unique chapter headers.

11 thoughts on “Book Review: Golden by Jessi Kirby

  1. Oooh, this sounds so good — and the actual book itself looks lovely! The unique details you’ve photographed are exactly why I could never give up my print books completely: holding a novel in your hands, especially when it’s so beautiful, is an experience in itself.

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