Sunday, 27 August 2017

KAI by Michelle Abbott

3.5 out of 5 stars

On Amazon UK
On Goodreads

How I discovered this book: It was submitted to Rosie Amber's Review Team, of which I am a member. Kai is a 'new adult' romance... not exactly my genre, but the blurb appealed to me.   

This story is nicely written, flows well and is very readable; I like the author's writing style.  The book starts with Lily, who works in a supermarket, discovering that her wages have not been paid into her bank.  The calamity is well written, drawing the reader into Lily's world straight away, though I had an issue with this part: although it would leave her with no food for four days, she rejects the offer of a loan from her manager and chooses to spend her last seventy pounds on paying her electricity bill.  Who can go four whole days with no food?

We then meet Kai, dope dealer with a heart of gold, who is very appealing; I can see that he's a great hero for a book aimed at a young adult age group.  Lily then meets her neighbour, Jackie, who is smoking a joint; it's medicinal, for her MS.  I had another slight issue with this, too.  Lily automatically assumes that Jackie is a 'drug addict', because she's smoking weed.  I would have thought that, as she has been an art student, she'd have a slightly more worldly attitude towards such things, unless art students have become a lot more clean living since my day!

I thought some of the issues raised were well done, such as Jackie's son refusing to go to school, and I liked Kai's bond with his mother and how he wanted to do whatever it took to make a better life for them.  The private, inner conflicts faced by Kai and Lily were nicely written, though I did wish the two characters' 'voices' had been more clearly defined; they both used the same speech patterns and language, had the same tempo and mood.  The book was not as edgy as I expected from the blurb, but I expect that is because it is written within the confines of that which is suitable for the target market, and who, I imagine, will like it very much.

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