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  • Posted September 8, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Chapter by Chapter's review of NARC

    I wasn’t sure what to expect from the novel Narc by author Crissa-Jean Chappell. In all honesty, the description/synopsis had me both interested and at the same time nervous. I’m a teenager, I like to thing of myself as a very intelligent one because I am so against the use of drugs and illegal substances, so the idea of reading a story about a character who has used drugs in the past and is now forced to find a drug dealer and rat him out the cops definitely caught my eye. It sounded interesting and when the story began I found myself actually very into the story.

    Narc as I just said, is the story about our main character Aaron Foster who accepts the offer from a cop to be a snitch in exchange for not going to jail. By doing so, Aaron has to attempt to become one of the popular people in his high school and smoke out the drug dealer (no pun intended). While he does this, Aaron makes friends with people who he thinks are suspects or people who can lead him to the drug dealer. The story is split up into three parts. Each part revolves around Aaron as he continues to lie to the people around him about who he is and what his motives are. Throughout all of this, Aaron also begins to fall in love with a troubled girl named Morgan who Aaron hates having to lie to.

    Narc begins with the main character Aaron getting chased by a police car with his little preteen sister and is pulled over. The officer discovers that his sister was carrying a bag of weed on her and the story sets off from there. Readers will get to watch as Aaron goes from a nobody to suddenly one of the more popular people in his high school. They get to see what his home life is like after the death of his father, who was a photographer in the army, and see the emotional war going on inside of Aaron as he deals with the conflict inside of him that comes with lying to Morgan.

    I enjoyed the romance between Morgan and Aaron just because I felt like Aaron was one of those pretty good boyfriend examples that you can in YA novels. He’s openly caring for her well-being and at the same time beats himself up about lying to her. And the lying plays a pretty big role because Morgan’s very insecure, whenever Aaron lies it’s pretty obvious and I personally thought that it hurt her when she knew that he was lying to her. In Narc, you get a wide array of characters from slutty popular girls to an independent character like Skully.

    I thought that everything in Narc was pretty decent. It had the right amount of action, drama and of course romance. I don’t have many complaints about the novel, it’s just that I found that it was missing a lot of detailing. You mostly get to see what Aaron’s thinking as opposed to knowing what the setting around him is like. Some readers may not like the vulgar language used in the novel, but it’s nothing too risqué. I would recommend Narc to fans of addiction stories, YA romance and readers who want a quick and dramatic read.

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  • Posted August 3, 2012

    Interesting Premise

    While I enjoyed the premise of this story very much, I found that it progressed a bit slowly and I never really connected with the characters. Don’t get me wrong, I liked the novel, I just wasn’t as enamored as I thought I was going to be going in. Mainly, I wasn’t a fan of Aaron, and as he’s the protagonist, that’s a big deal for me. If I’m not in love with the characters, then I automatically won’t be in love with the book; just a fact of life. Aaron was an all right guy, trying to do the right thing, but his constant wishy-washiness really irked me. I understand that he’s under a lot of pressure from the cops, and that he’s “falling in love,” but even so, the fact that he couldn’t decide if he wanted to protect himself and his family or a girl he liked was a bit jarring. Perhaps it’s just me, but I believe family comes first, and since Aaron has just met his new stoner friends, Morgan and Scully, I don’t think he made the right choices when it came to family versus friends. But again, I’m not in his situation, so I can only say what I think I would do. And thinking I’d do something and actually doing it are two different things… so perhaps I’d be in the same boat as Aaron.

    But, characterization aside, I also had an issue with the fact that Aaron was forced to be a Narc at 17. Now, I don’t know the law, but Aaron states, repeatedly, that he’s under age and the police never spoke to his mother, so I got the distinct impression that what the police were doing was illegal coercion. Now, again, I’m not familiar with police policies, but threatening to throw a 17 year old in jail unless he becomes a Narc, without going through the proper channels, such as parents and lawyers, seemed a bit unreal. As in, I don’t think they can do that. But I haven’t researched this topic, so I could be wrong, and probably am. But either way, I found it a bit jarring. At least, if Aaron questions it, why not do the right thing and tell his mother?

    Overall, the story was interesting enough, though I wish there had been more action. Like I said earlier, it’s a bit slow, but towards the end it speeds up to a point that is a little overwhelming, and then everything comes crashing together. I wouldn’t say it’s a happy ending, but at least Aaron comes out of it having learned some valuable lessons.

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