Fifteen-year-old Isabelle Scott loves her life by the boardwalk on the supposed wrong side of the tracks in North Carolina. But when tragedy strikes, a social worker sends her to live with a long-lost uncle and his preppy privileged family. Isabelle is taken away from everything she’s ever known, and, unfortunately, inserting her into the glamorous lifestyle of Emerald Cove doesn’t go so well. Her cousin Mirabelle Monroe isn’t thrilled to share her life with an outsider, and, in addition to dealing with all the rumors and backstabbing that lurk beneath their classmates’ Southern charm, a secret is unfolding that will change both girls’ lives forever.
While going through the list of books I still needed to review, somehow Belles was completely forgotten—which is terribly sad, because I quite enjoyed it. Although the third person narration made it initially difficult for me to connect with either Izzie or Mira, I gradually became deeply invested in their day-to-day lives. This is the kind of contemporary story that is full of little spats, petty disagreements, and juicy, long-held secrets, which is always irresistible to read, but Calonita gives her story much more depth by really developing the main characters. I really liked this story, and I look forward to seeing more of Izzie and Mira in Winter White.
Review copy from publisher Little, Brown