The Fixer – Jennifer Lynn Barnes – The Fixer #1 – Bloomsbury Children’s – Published 7 July 2015
When sixteen-year-old Tess Kendrick is sent to live with her older sister, Ivy, she has no idea that the infamous Ivy Kendrick is Washington D.C.’s #1 “fixer,” known for making politicians’ scandals go away for a price. No sooner does Tess enroll at Hardwicke Academy than she unwittingly follows in her sister’s footsteps and becomes D.C.’s premier high school fixer, solving problems for elite teens.
Secrets pile up as each sister lives a double life. . . . until their worlds come crashing together and Tess finds herself in the middle of a conspiracy with one of her classmates and a client of Ivy’s. Suddenly, there is much more on the line than good grades, money, or politics, and the price for this fix might be more than Tess is willing to pay.
Once again Jennifer Lynn Barnes delivers with a book that has fantastic mystery, twist after twist, politics, power, high-tension drama, and one hell of a tough protagonist.
I’m so glad I finally got to read this book. There is just something about Barnes’ writing that makes her books so readable and her characters so loveable.
Tess has lived with her grandpa on his farm since her parents died when she was young. But as her grandpa ages she has had to work harder to make sure no one notices his increased confusion, strange moods and memory loss. When her sister, the one who Tess hasn’t seen for three years, turns up and whisks Tess away from her home, Tess will learn what her sister does exactly and how it will entangle her in the dangerous world of politics and secrets.
The plot just kept twisting and re-shaping. I loved that I could never guess what would happen next or who the bad guys would be. There were a few other things I guessed, though, and I was pleased to be proven right. I love how the teenagers, Tess and her new school friends, can hold their own with the adults in this book but they are still very realistic teenagers – just clever, well-connected teens.
All the characters are awesome. Tess’s sister, for example who is strong, clever and slightly scary (in a I know all your dirty secrets kind of way). And Asher, Tess’s school friend, is honest and hilarious with his self confidence and hidden vulnerability. Along with Brodie the very unconventional driver, grieving and brooding Henry and, you know, the President and First Lady. And then there is Tess. She can more than hold her own in this crowd of privileged and powerful people, but she doesn’t pretend to be anyone other than who she is. I love that there is no romance in this book. It doesn’t need it. There is room for it to develop later in the series, but the suspense, mysteries and characters are enough on their own. And let’s not forget that Tess doesn’t need a guy to be super awesome.
Humour, friendship, family dynamics of the most exciting kind, high school – this book is seriously awesome.
I can’t wait to read the next book in this series and see what trouble Tess, her friends and family will become mixed up in next.
Category: Young adult fiction.
Themes: Politics, high school, Washington DC, sisters, relationships, friendship, power, corruption, murder, elections.
Reading age guide: Ages 12 and up.
Advisory: References to murder, suicide and kidnapping.
Published: 7 July 2015 by Bloomsbury Children’s
Format: Hardcover, paperback, ebook, audiobook. 384 pages.