Book Review: Step Up, Shine On by Angela May George

First Published in 2020 by Omnibus Books, an imprint of Scholastic Australia.

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Angus & Robertson:

Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Fiction.

Page Count: 204

My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Sypnosis from Goodreads:

Kat’s got all the ingredients to go all the way. But she fails her exams-on purpose-to avoid the pressure of the top classes. She kills it in soccer, but never trials for the rep teams. She’s happy to fly under the radar, unlike her oh-so-perfect Wonder Brother. But this year things are shifting. Not least in her friendships. Lavinia has defected to none other than The Triad of She-Wolves, but Kat’s gained the new girl, the Goth, and after tutoring Bayani’s brother, a boyfriend! When secrets are revealed and loyalties are tested, Kat discovers that it is time for her to step up… and shine!

My Review:

I received a copy of Step Up, Shine On from Author Angela May George and Scholastic Australia in exchange for an honest review, all thoughts are my own.

This was such a sweet and refreshing story, so easy to read and completely addictive! I really enjoyed getting swept up in Kat’s life, though like her friends I wished she didn’t completely fly under the radar and try and undersell herself, when she could completely shine if she let herself!

Kat, at every point throughout this novel, felt completely and so vividly written, so natural and honestly written, too. She’s sick of being outshone by her perfect elder brother, who she refers to as Wonder Brother, as it feels apparent to her that their Parents favour him and that he can seemingly do no wrong, that is until he’s caught video chatting with a girl late at night and well, let’s just say it slowly but surely becomes evident that Wonder Brother isn’t hugely wonderous and has his flaws, too!

I really enjoyed Kat’s family dynamic throughout Step Up, Shine On! I thought her Parents were so endearingly strict in their traditional Polish ways, I hadn’t really read many books with Polish families so it was quite sweet reading about how proud and firm the Parents were in their ways! Kat’s Mum was quite lovely, I could totally visualise it when Kat and her boyfriend and his brother were watching movies and Kat’s Mum was asking them constantly if they wanted snacks, it was so cute! Naturally though, I could of course envision Kat’s cringe!

The banter between Kat and the brothers were quite sweet, I must admit I personally could’ve done without the romance sub plot in Step Up, Shine On personally, purely because I found myself enjoying Kat’s friendship with Bayani more so than her blooming relationship with Dan, but it was cute how they became this sweet trio that hung out together, with Kat and Dan making fun of Bayani’s next level pro Pringle eating and chill manner.

I felt so bad for Kat when her close friend cruelly ditches her for a group of mean girls known not affectionately knows as The Triad, Livinia, Kat’s best friend, cruelly ditches her for the ridiculous bullies and I just felt so sad for her! It felt like they’d both been friends for so long, swapping stories about his strict their Parents are, but then for Livinia to become a bully towards Kat, it was horrible!

There were a couple of points throughout this book where Kat was going through quite a bit of bullying, it was just painful and honestly there was not one point throughout Step Up, Shine On, where I just hoped that Kat would learn to be happy with herself and proud of her unique self and really own her awesome self! Step Up, Shine On is such a fun, refreshing read and I completely recommend it!

Happy Reading,


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