Not only did ALLEGEDLY look amazeballs, but bonus!, Tiffany D. Jackson is coming to #YAFest2017! So, of course I had to get my dirty paws on this book as soon as possible. And man, what a book!
Tiffany D. Jackson’s Allegedly
Katherine Tegen Books, 2017
Mary B. Addison has been released from baby jail and given to the state until she turns 18. She lives in a girls home with others in her situation, but no one is quite like Mary. Mary’s crime? She killed an 11-month old baby. Allegedly.
The novel chronicles Mary’s realization she’s pregnant and will lose her baby to the state because of a crime she didn’t commit. Allegedly. When she realizes she’s pregnant, she takes her case to the Absolution Project (much like the very real Innocence Project) to have her case re-tried in hopes she can keep her baby, affectionately named Bean.
The novel moves through Mary’s fight for a re-trial, her dysfunctional relationship with her Momma, who’s found a new husband and God, a relationship with Ted, her baby’s daddy, and the tenuous situation with the other girls in the group home.
The question remains: Will Mary get to keep Bean? And did she really kill baby Alyssa?
I’m going to warn you all: this was hard to read. Not because of the content matter, but because of what a freaking kick-ass writer Jackson is. I mean, man. I felt like I was there with Mary while she was telling the story. But it was worth it, every single word.
Okay, so first. The storyline and characters.
The storyline and plot was really tight. There’s a mystery wrapped up in the telling of this story, because the reader is questioning, if Mary didn’t kill baby Alyssa, who did? And Jackson keeps stringing the reader along through the last. damned. page. (Again, worth it!) There were no plot-holes, and nothing too extraneous. Everything worked together and created a solid story. There weren’t a lot of extra subplots that made the reader wonder why they were included, which I liked.
The characters are so well developed. Not even just Mary, her mother, and Ted. But the girls in the group home that are really secondary and tertiary characters are developed and distinguishable from one another. (As a writer, I was super jealous of how well Jackson was able to pull off individual voices so clearly and easily.)
I can’t really form coherent words for this review, because the last thing I want to do is spoil it for you. So I’m going to say this:
Go. Read it. Right now.
No, seriously. Stop what you’re doing, and read this book.
Then come to YA Fest and meet Tiffany Jackson and tell her how awesome she is and that you can’t wait for her next book to come out.
Rating… 10/10 Stars, and two very enthusiastic thumbs up.