Title: The Secret Diamond Sisters
Author: Michelle Madow
Rating: 4/5 Stars
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Paperback, 382 Pages
Published February 2014
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Summary: Savannah. Courtney. Peyton. The three sisters grew up not knowing their father and not quite catching a break. But it looks like their luck is about to change when they find out the secret identity of their long-lost dad—a billionaire Las Vegas hotel owner who wants them to come live in a gorgeous penthouse hotel suite. Suddenly the Strip's most exclusive clubs are all-access, and with an unlimited credit card each, it should be easier than ever to fit right in. But in a town full of secrets and illusion, fitting in is nothing compared to finding out the truth about their past.An absolutely amazing and super fantastic blogger friend of ours, Ella from The YA Club, was sweet enough to send me a copy of both this book and its sequel (Diamonds in the Rough) after noticing during a Twitter chat that I said I was dying to read this series but I couldn't find the books. (So thank you again, Ella - you're a total sweetheart and I love you and everything you do for both me and Amber!!<33) So that's how I got a copy of this book, and I was super stoked to start it. At BookCon 2014 we actually ran into Michelle Madow and I was excited and told her I would be starting her book ASAP - thinking it would be easy to find. But it wasn't. :( So Ella fixed that!
If I could describe this book in one phrase, I would have to say that my phrase of choice would be "Gossip Girl meets The Princess Diaries." Savannah, Courtney and Peyton are all sisters living in a run-down apartment with their deadbeat, alcoholic mother somewhere outside California. Once her drinking situation gets bad enough that they can no longer be in her care, the girls are immediately whisked away to live with their absentee father - which just so happens to be the Adrian Diamond, one of the wealthiest men (and most popular hotel chain owners) in the world at the time. So these girls go from barely having enough money to afford dinner to getting black American Express cards to spend on "whatever they need," according to their father.
So not only do these girls have to get used to shiny new lives in Vegas with a hotel mogul of a dad, but they have seventeen years' worth of catching up to do with the previously mentioned man. So basically, these girls have a lot on their plate.
This book captivated me and held my attention from start to finish. There was a period of time where I was a total Gossip Girl junkee, and all I would do was take four or five of the books out of the library at a time and just blow through them all in one weekend. So I was all over this book, especially since it relates so much to G.G. with a school gossip column and all of the glitz and glam of the characters' lives. It was like a nonstop reality T.V. show, which some people may not like, but I loved it.
The only thing that threw me off a little bit about this book (and kept me from giving it a full five-star rating) was that some things seemed to be moving a bit too fast for me. (Skip to the next paragraph if you haven't read this book yet, because some spoilers are about to get involved!) Within the first three or so chapters of the book, we already meet the three sisters, learn their entire home-life situation, have them jet across the coast to land in Vegas and discover that their father is one of the richest men in the world. There were a few points that seemed like too many excessive plot clues, also. For example: When Savannah casually mentioned that maybe Adrian Diamond could be their father, then her sisters blew that idea off, and then thirty seconds later, poof, you find out that he's her father. It reminded me of cheesy commercial acting in a small way. It didn't ruin the book for me, but it threw me off a little and gave me a vibe of the writing being too forced, but other than that the actual writing style of the book and such was very enjoyable.
Like I said, so much drama goes down in this book. This is a definite page-turner that will keep you interested up until the very last page. It's like a soap opera for teens! There's tons of glitz and glam, lots of Blamex use (*wistful sigh*), tons of making out and breaking up and drama, drama, drama. It's great. I can't even think of anything else to say other than that it was so great.
The characters themselves are greatly crafted, too! There are some I can't stand (*cough* Madison and Damien *cough*), and some that I absolutely love (*cough* Nick and Brett *cough*). The Diamond Sisters themselves all have totally unique personalities, which is refreshing because it's one of the few books I've read recently where the sisters aren't perfect clones of one another. I love how Savannah is young and naive but all into being sophisticated and glamorous, and how Courtney is the strong and supportive and rule-abiding one (well...), and how Peyton is totally the do-what-she-wants type who doesn't let anyone or anything get in her way. Each personality of each sister may seem like they all clash, but in reality, it's the opposite. It's the perfect blend!
All in all, I was very impressed with Michelle Madow and The Secret Diamond Sisters. I am about to pick up Diamonds in the Rough and tear through that book (I am so excited!), and then hopefully I'll be one of the lucky twenty street team members that gets their eager hands on the third book in the series, coming out soon - Diamonds Are Forever! Here's to crossing my fingers!