Monday, August 28, 2017

Goodbye, Good Girl Review

Goodbye, Good Girl
By: Renee Blossom

When eighteen year old Kandace Santellan is ditched in St. Louis by her boyfriend on a cross country trip to reach her estranged father, she finds herself trapped––she can’t go home and she doesn’t have enough money to reach Los Angeles. She then meets April, an ambitious exotic dancer with attitude, who has a one thousand dollar wager––that Kandace can make the money she desperately needs dancing at the gentleman’s club The Palace in just one night. Rumored as an adult playground of fast money and faster pills, it’s a place where fantasy is king and problems are forgotten. Anything can happen.
But can Kandace strip her clothes for money, even if it is her only way to repair her broken family?
Feeling like time is running out, and out of options, she gets curious…thinking that after one wild night dancing, she would be on her way to LA. And her friends and family would never need to know. Could she make it work? Or will the club’s fantasy lifestyle take the good girl from Pittsburgh, and make her into someone she’s never met?


I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.


SPOILERS!!!!!!!


This was a sort of coming of age story, where the main character is on a journey to find her dad but ends up finding out things about herself as she goes. The story was intriguing and full of adventure. I was completely absorbed by Kandace and her story and could not put this book down. 


Kandace is 18 years old and the oldest of her parents three daughters. Since her dad left two years ago, on some job related trip that never ends, her mother has become weak and prescription drug dependent leaving Kandace in charge of running her household and raising her sisters all while trying to go to college and get a job, herself. It's a lot of responsibility on one girl and you really start to feel sympathy for her plight, which makes her subsequent decisions a little puzzling. An intimidating stranger shows up at their front door looking for Kandace's dad which begins her cross country journey to find her dad and bring him home. During her trip she meets April and decides to spend a night exotic dancing, because of the money she can make from it. Exotic dancing leads her to using drugs and on stage lesbian experiences, which even though she started off being a "good girl" doesn't seem off character as the story is about her personal growth and personality changes. Throughout the book she keeps her strength and strong familial sense, often calling her family and friends to assure them that she's ok. 


The one part of the book I did not like was when she finally tracks down her dad. She finds him living in California and he gives her some weak excuses about why he never comes home and makes it clear that he has no plans to ever return home. Kandace accepts those weak excuses and spends time with him as if the trip to find him had been a social one and not the life saving mission that she had made it out to be. It was so anticlimactic that if the journey had not been so adventurous and fun, I would have thought of it as a waste. He is the literal description of dead beat dad; taking off on his family, not sending them enough money to survive on, not have any reliable way of communicating with them regularly. And for the most part he seems totally unconcerned by it all. Another puzzling aspect was the decision that Kandace made to stay in St. Louis (her original stip club city) to go to college because of her decision to continue dancing because of the amount of money she makes doing it. How she can leave her struggling mother and younger sisters for money blows my mind, and she herself makes the comparison of herself to her dad by making that choice to leave her family. On the flip side, it was nice that she felt able to make a completely self serving decision for once. While I don't believe her mom is strong enough to raise her children without Kandace's help, it's definitely about time that Kandace got to take back her own life and live it how she chooses to. 


The novel had a good flow from one event to the next and the author did a great job at building like-able characters that make the readers care about their fate. As with all novels, there were parts that were a bit slow, and I said previously, I was not at all impressed by her interactions with her father, but overall I enjoyed the book. I am looking forward to rereading it to see if there are any hidden moments that I didn't catch the first time through.


Final Rating:
✬✬✬✬✫
Probability of Rereading:
Yes

Thanks for reading!

Opinionated Bookworm

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