Review: Even In Paradise by Chelsey Philpot

20601687 Genre: YA Contemporary
Published: October 14, 2014 by HarperCollins
Length: 368 pages
Source: HarperCollins (ARC)

When Julia Buchanan enrolls at St. Anne’s at the beginning of junior year, Charlotte Ryder already knows all about the former senator’s daughter. Most people do… or think they do.

Charlotte certainly never expects she’ll be Julia’s friend. But almost immediately, she is drawn into the larger than-life-new girl’s world—a world of midnight rendezvous, dazzling parties, palatial vacation homes, and fizzy champagne cocktails. And then Charlotte meets, and begins falling for, Julia’s handsome older brother, Sebastian.

But behind her self-assured smiles and toasts to the future, Charlotte soon realizes that Julia is still suffering from a tragedy. A tragedy that the Buchanan family has kept hidden… until now.”


Yeah..this book…nooo… I did not like or enjoy reading Even In Paradise at all. I was so bored throughout the book. The only part I liked was the first 10% of the book and the last 10%. Other than that, I was DYING to finish it so I could move on and read another book.  I think this is the first ever YA Contemporary book I’m giving a 2/5 stars. I LOVE contemporary books; it’s my favorite YA category, so I was surprised that I did not like this one. The characters were just SO annoying especially Julia. She’s a senior in high school but acts like an annoying 5 year old. Charlotte a.k.a. Charlie (Julia’s bff) on the other hand was a push over. She was like obsessed with the Buchanan family which I found really weird. One call from Julia and she flies to Arcadia which is where the Buchanan family lives. Like, dude, what about your own life? Your own family? This book reminded me a lot of The Great Gatsby (there’s actually also a reference of TGG in the book) which I also disliked so maybe that’s why? I guess if you loved The Great Gatsby, then you’ll like this one as well.

I could not relate to any of the characters so there’s that…and I really disliked the Buchanan family. They always relied on Charlotte and treated her as their savior or whatever. Um. Okay… I also do not understand why Charlotte instantly became bff with Julia. They don’t even know each other! Charlotte just found Julia outside of her dorm, drunk, so Charlotte let her stay in her dorm, and next thing you know BAM they’re like inseparable sisters. One thing I did get out of (after reading the last pages of the book) is that people may seem happy and flawless on the outside, but they’re hiding something on the inside. The ‘secret’ stuff was kind of predictable too. The summary’s a bit misleading also because the mystery doesn’t really come up until the last few chapters of the book. Everything else in between were about Julia’s day to day life etc. Overall I don’t recommend this book. If I had to describe it in one word, it would be boring.

14 Responses to “Review: Even In Paradise by Chelsey Philpot”

  1. 1 Laura January 20, 2015 at 1:46 AM

    I like Gatsby but still, this book doesn’t sound good. Great review!

  2. 3 Hazel @ Stay Bookish January 20, 2015 at 8:09 AM

    I have to admit I quite muttered “oh no” when I saw that this garnered only two stars from you, Leigh. I’ve been looking forward to this one but I’m the kind of reader who loves books because of the characters so I think I’ll have a hard time liking this one, seeing as how you described the Buchanan family and Charlotte. Thanks for sharing your honest thoughts!

    • 4 Leigh (LittleBookStar) January 25, 2015 at 3:12 PM

      aww so sorry Hazel. I was looking forward to this one too since the cover was so intriguing how it looks like they were all chilling and had no worries about life. I guess the cover was misleading b/c the book was all about how the MC was helping the Buchanan family with their problems..

  3. 5 Jeann @ Happy Indulgence January 21, 2015 at 4:50 AM

    Too bad it didn’t hold your attention, it definitely does sound like it was bland and that you couldn’t connect to the main character. I definitely can’t see how she would just drop everything for another family. Great review Leigh!

  4. 7 Cee January 21, 2015 at 8:34 PM

    Oh boy, I tried to read this too, but gave up because I was soooo annoyed at Charlotte for saying, “I thought you were mad at me” to Julia. Like, they had just met each other three days ago and that was only once! Why would Julia be mad at her? Like girrllllllllll. Charlotte, you two aren’t buddies yet and you didn’t have plans to hang. Just cool it. That scene pretty much annoyed me so much that I had to give it up. LOLLLL.

  5. 9 Melanie (YA Midnight Reads) January 22, 2015 at 1:31 AM

    Aw I’m sorry you didn’t like this one, Leigh! It’s a shame that you couldn’t click with the characters–I had a similar issue with that too, but I absolutely loved her writing! It’s so freaking gorgeous.

    Lovely review, hun <33

  6. 11 Nicole @ The Quiet Concert January 23, 2015 at 11:16 AM

    So I liked this one more than you did, but it still fell flat to me, so I didn’t like it as much as everyone else seemed to. I liked the carpe diem feel and I thought it read easily but I was indifferent to most everything else…

  7. 13 Jess@MyReadingDress January 25, 2015 at 12:03 AM

    Aw it sucks that you didn’t like this one. A couple of friends have sworn that this is the contemporary for me so I picked up a copy a couple of weeks ago! I love Great Gatsby, though it’s not my favourite Fitz, so perhaps I’ll enjoy this one a tad more? It sucks that the book bored you though! But hey, there’s plenty of fish in the sea right? I hope your next read it better! Brilliant review, Leigh! ❤

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Well hello there! Thank you so much for stopping by. Little Book Star is a young adult book blog ran by Leigh, an 18 year old avid reader. This blog consists of book reviews, giveaways, author interviews, and more! Feel free to explore!

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