Review Detail

Take It, by Victoria Kinnaird
Books EW Elaine White February 18, 2020 461
Madly in love with Jude and Jack
 POV: 1st, and 3rd person


 Take It is an emotional rollercoaster. A bittersweet love story. It hurts. It shines. And it exposes the dark underbelly of life, love, teen fame, loss and rock and roll. Take It is the ugly truth of what is left when the mask is ripped off.

 “Home was a mirror I didn't have the strength to look in to. I knew I wouldn't be able to stand what stared back out at me.”

 At nearly twice the length of Book 1, Take It sees the band at the start of their career. Not the shiny, flashy one that we all see in the movies, but the hard graft and sleepless nights that go into making something work. To building a legacy. It follows them through the highs and lows of success, budding stardom, and how fame takes a toll on their personal lives and values. In the background, as ever, lurks the struggle of maintaining the right look, finding the right words, and dealing with family.

 I'm not going to say a lot about the plot, because there are too many surprises and twists that I might giveaway. All I can say is that I was heartbroken, with tears in my eyes for about 80% of the book. Tears of joy, sadness, heartache, and a strange pride for these teenagers who had their s*it together and, even the ones who didn't, managed to pull through the darkness to the other side.

 “He was everything. His voice, his smile, the spark in his eyes, it lit something in the corners of my heart that I didn't even know was there, the capacity to love someone so completely I couldn't imagine life without him.”

 I will always love Aunt Rose, Dad Dan, and the band. I also loved Bodhi and the team that came together to support JJ in the darkest times. Eleanor was a piece of work.

 The story dealt with some dark issues. It was definitely heavier and darker than the first book, but for good reason. You can't have growth if things stay the same, and you can't have success without a struggle. Jack's journey was touching, moving, devastating, and yet perfectly tallied with who the characters had always been. Roles were reversed and people stepped up who you thought would break down. JJ was a shining beacon through every moment. Things happened that shouldn't happen to kids of this age, and they made decisions they were smart enough to know better about. But that's what was so good about it. This wasn't the shining world of fiction. These were kids thrown into super-stardom before they knew what it meant, before they were ready, and the consequences were almost inevitable.

 Through it all, JJ and Jack were solid. They never faltered, never wavered. Their feelings for one another were the one constant in their lives and neither second guessed them. They doubted themselves, they were afraid it was all too good to be true, they took time away from each other, but they never once thought about walking away for good, because they already knew they couldn't. They're not JJ and Jack anymore...they're Jude and Jack, and that was a whole other story to be explored in this book.

 “Anything that happens to you, everything that happens to you...I feel it too. So if this is how you bow out, then it's how I go too. Mutually assured destruction. You're my bomb, baby.”

 Regardless of what they went through, these kids stuck together. Friends first, band mates second. It wasn't just a fun motto for them, it was how they lived their lives. When one hurt, they all hurt. And when one of them needed them, the rest of the band was there.

 The Second Doesn't Suck was a beautiful and perfect moment. With a perfect ending, a perfect Encore, and the light-hearted relief of the short story Rule 1 to end, Take It was a journey of discovery, a heartrending mass of tangled emotions, and a promise of brighter things to come in the future.

 Bring on Make It!


 Favourite Quotes

 “You found me.”
 “You were right where I left you.”
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