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Can't Look Away by Donna Cooner
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Can't Look Away

by Donna Cooner

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In the fiction book, “Can’t Look Away” written by Donna Cooner, the main character, Torrey Grey, a fashion blogger also known as “Beautystarz15”, faces conflict, change, and tragedy, when her sister, Miranda Grey ,was tragically killed by a drunk driver. After her sister's death, Torrey’s parents decide that they should should move from Colorado to Texas, Torrey finds herself at a new school, knowing nobody, but her quirky cousin Rayelynne. In the end, Torrey finds herself having to face choosing between her “popular” friends or the secret loyal boyfriend, right in front of everyone. I enjoyed this book very much, and would highly recommend it, to those who like drama, conflict, foreshadowing, and fiction. All in all, I would consider this book a good read, very interesting and dramatic, while all tying in together in the end. ( )
  Danaealasker | Oct 30, 2017 |
Torrey Grey, the famous vlogger BeautyStarz15, faces life after her younger sister has died in a car accident. Torrey finds herself in a new town (TX, not CO), a new "beige" room, and with estranged parents who, too, are grappling with the loss. Torrey blames herself for her sister, Miranda's death... she was at the scene for one of Torrey's videos and they had just quarreled. And the longer Torrey waits to post to the adoring audience, the worse her crimes seem to be. Torrey may have changed locations but not much else. She's still hyper-aware of fashion and superficial beauty and determined to be part of the popular crowd-- whatever it takes. But Texas is not Colorado and her cousin, Raylene (a batton-twirling, not-very-sophisticated girl) and Luis (archetypically dark, brooding and, oh yeah, handsome) force Torrey to look at her life and her sister's death in new ways. After some brief romance, hijinks in a cemetery, a cursory introduction to Mexican culture's Dia de las Muertes, Torrey's story draws to a close. In the end, of course, Torrey begins to grieve, to accept her sister's death, to forgive herself for not being the perfect sister, and to redefine what being popular really means. If it all happens a bit too quickly -- and neatly -- well, this is YA fodder, isn't it?

A once-over-lightly look at grieving, Mexican culture, romance, and the cult of personality. Should appeal to the casual young adult reader, esp. girls. ( )
  mjspear | Jul 17, 2015 |
Can't Look Away was a wonderful novel with heart! Full review to come ( )
  Emily_Anne | Aug 15, 2014 |
I wanted to read this because I am drawn to stories about grief and how teens cope with it and Torrey sounds like a character that I could feel for and cheer for.

While I liked Torrey in general, and I am all about bloggers of all sort, even fashion and beauty, something about her just didn't click the best for me. She thought about numbers and how testifying about her sister's death could bring an even bigger surge. And I know that death doesn't just make you inevitably stop thinking about the things you love, and thinking in that manner may be her own way of dealing.

Her in the new town was interesting, but at first especially all of the new people ran together, the popular girl, boys talking to her and Luis, as well as Raylene. They all eventually kinda grew into their own characters but they just didn't leave as big of an impression as I liked.

Her family has a special brand of dysfunction. Torrey's mom is in this grief daze, and I totally can't blame her because I can't even imagine what I would do, think, or say if I lost one of my girls. Torrey's dad is a bit more in the present and tries his best to still be there for Torrey.

The semi mystery of everyone's motivations and how they relate with Torrey was entertaining, and well done. The ending worked well for the book, and you can't expect that everything will be a complete HEA because there is the big loss of her sister.


Bottom Line: Good but not the most memorable and not quite what I expected. ( )
  brandileigh2003 | Jul 21, 2014 |
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SensorOnline - ALLEGED DRUNK DRIVER KILLS PEDESTRIAN Published on: August 23, 2:36:17pm MDT Boulder, CO - A suspected drunken driver struck and killed a young girl at a crosswalk in a popular pedestrian mall.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0545427657, Hardcover)

Donna Cooner establishes herself as our own Jodi Picoult in this timely tale of sisters, loss, and redemption.

Torrey Grey is famous. At least, on the internet. Thousands of people watch her popular videos on fashion and beauty. But when Torrey's sister is killed in an accident -- maybe because of Torrey and her videos -- Torrey's perfect world implodes.

Now, strangers online are bashing Torrey. And at her new school, she doesn't know who to trust. Is queen bee Blair only being sweet because of Torrey's internet infamy? What about Raylene, who is decidedly unpopular, but seems accepts Torrey for who she is? And then there's Luis, with his brooding dark eyes, whose family runs the local funeral home. Torrey finds herself drawn to Luis, and his fascinating stories about El dio de los Muertos, the Day of the Dead.

As the Day of the Dead draws near, Torrey will have to really look at her own feelings about death, and life, and everything in between. Can she learn to mourn her sister out of the public eye?

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:09:43 -0400)

Sixteen-year-old Torrey Grey's YouTube videos on fashion and beauty for teenagers were famous, but when her younger sister is killed by a drunk driver during a filming her world falls apart--cyber bullies are attacking her, her father moves them to Texas, and she does not know who to trust at her new school or whether her cousin is really a friend.… (more)

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