Summary: The Undoing of Thistle Tate
In The Undoing of Thistle Tate, seventeen-year-old, Thistle Tate (yes, it’s her real name) is hiding a potentially explosive secret. The world knows her as the author of a famous young adult series. In reality, though, her ambitious father is the writer behind the books. While Thistle does make a few contributions, she’s far from being the actual author.
The stories are also close to Thistle and her dad’s real life story — her mom died when she was a child and her dad is having trouble moving forward with his life. They both live a fairly secluded life, with the exception of Thistle’s best friend, boy next door, and long-time crush, Liam.
But when her dad is in an accident that leaves him unable to write, just weeks before the deadline of her last book, Thistle is forced to take matters into her own hands. Add her dad’s desire to stay in control of the book’s plot and a couple of new friends who are fans of her work and things get pretty interesting in this book.
I was pleasantly surprised by this novel. It’s one of those young adult novels that has flown relatively under the radar. Yet, it’s very engaging and readers will feel Thistle’s anxiety and dilemmas throughout the book. It also gives readers a peek into the process of writing a book and what life is like as an author.
I found Thistle’s father to be a frustrating and controlling character. However, it does show that grief has a variety of manifestations. This story also includes a character with a chronic disease — Crohn’s disease — and I thought the portrayal was fairly accurate. It also shows the character as a full human, not entirely defined by that illness.
There is a love triangle in this one. It’s not too annoying, but it’s worth a headsup if you hate stories with love triangles.
Overall: The Undoing of Thistle Tate
The Undoing of Thistle Tate is a strong young adult novel that looks behind the scenes of publishing. This book features a dynamic female protagonist who takes responsibility for her actions. It is packed with well-rounded characters and has an engaging plot. If you like YA contemporaries with a touch of mystery and romance, you’ll enjoy this one.
Disclaimer: I received an electronic copy of The Undoing of Thistle Tate from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
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More YA Reviews
- We Are the Perfect Girl by Ariel Kaplan
- Stealing Home by Becky Wallace
- Girl Against the Universe by Paula Stokes
Have you read this book or anything by Katelyn Detweiler? What did you think? What are your favorite books about writers or the publishing scene? I’d love to know.
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