After Hours by Claire Kennedy
Published by Simon and Schuster
Publication Date: June 16th 2015
Genres: Young Adult
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Scandals and hook-ups abound in a summertime restaurant drama where four teens are all willing to do whatever it takes to make it through the workday…and hopefully to win the money in the after-hours dare-based game of Tips.
Isa, Xavi, Peter, and Finn know that a job at the high-end Waterside Café isn’t just about waiting tables. It’s about the gossip, the hook-ups, the after-hours parties, and, most of all, it’s about Tips.
Tips—the high-stakes game based on dares. Whoever completes the most dares wins the collected money. A sum that could change a wasted summer into a Summer to Remember.
Isa is the new girl with an embarrassing secret, and as long as she stays on top of her game, she sees no reason why anyone could ever find out.
Xavi will do anything for the money…absolutely anything.
Peter, Xavi’s stepbrother, has been in love with her for years, and he thinks the game is the perfect time to confess his feelings.
Finn is in the game just for the thrill. He has enough tips coming in to keep him happy…even if those tips come with some conditions.
From seduction to stealing to threats, the dares are a complete free-for-all, and only the best can win.
I had high hopes for this book because it’s set in a restaurant, around a group of employees of the restaurant. The premise sounded interesting and I was mighty curious about the game that they play called Tips but I’m sad that this book just didn’t work for me.
It’s a book that is character driven and I can’t say that I liked any of the characters. This is the third YA book that I read this week and I have not liked any of the books that I read, including this one.
Anyway so this book follows a group of employees of the Waterside Cafe who are playing in the restaurants after hours game called Tips. You pay in to the game, everyone shows up after hours on the roof and dares are issued and if you complete the dare, you stay in the running for the pot. A bunch of kids are playing this game and the shit that these kids go through to win that money is disturbing. Blackmail, seduction, a whole lot of dirty shit and it was a struggle to continue reading because I felt like as dirty and yucky as their shady as shit boss Rico.
The four main characters are Finn, Peter, Isa and Xavi. They all have their reasons for playing the game and each of them will do whatever it takes to win the money. Each character drove me a little crazy. My thing with Finn – I kept reading to find out what his other side business was and when we find out, meh. Then there was Isa, the new girl. When we first meet her, she’s a total bitch to Finn but over the course of the book, she just got on my nerves. She wasn’t very likable to me. Then there was Peter and Xavi. Peter has a serious thing for Xavi, who is younger and his step-sister. sigh He liked Xavi before their parents got married but still, their whole relationship and story line was very “meh” to me…and Xavi got on my hot damn nerves too.
I’m really sad that the driving force behind me reading this book, wasn’t explored enough. It was more of a background thing and while I liked the restaurant time, the rest of the book fell completely flat for me. I just…didn’t like it.
Grade: 1 out of 5