This review was originally published on She Reads, where I write guest YA/Teen Fiction reviews.
First of all, let’s take a second to love this book cover. There’s not even an ounce of musical talent in me, and yet I look at this and I want to BE that girl. I don’t know what it is, and I don’t even love country music, but… it’s just too cool.
In Dirty Little Secret, Jennifer Echols (who’s quickly becoming one of my favorite authors ever) takes us on a trip to the heart of Nashville’s music scene to watch the heartbreakingly beautiful beginnings of a great romance.
Bailey, an eighteen year old with unbelievable fiddle-playing talent, has been sent to live with her grandfather while her parents tour around with her younger sister, Julie, who was picked over Bailey for a recording contract. As part of Julie’s coming rise to fame, their parents and the recording company have essentially asked Bailey to give up what she loves best – playing music. When Bailey meets Sam, who just happens to be both devastatingly handsome and also the front man of a band in need of a fiddle player, she can’t quite resist being pulled back into the music scene.
The resulting story is a fascinating one full of characters I’d love to spend a week with, enjoying the Nashville music scene and hearing what must be some excellent music. Echols is a master at writing romantic relationships – from the moment the two characters meet each other, discover the chemistry, all the way up until they’re finally actually together – you feel like you’re there with them. Like you’re a part of the story instead of just watching it.
Echols writes romantic dramas (like this one) for MTV Books and romantic comedies for Simon Pulse. She also writes adult novels, one of which is the beginning of a series involving PR agents for celebrities behaving badly, called Star Crossed. No matter which Echols book you pick up, you’ll enjoy it, but I can’t recommend Dirty Little Secret enough. It’s definitely my favorite of hers so far!