This novel is an action-packed ride that rivals any other teen thriller. It’s packed with realistic but intense danger scenes and characters I instantly rooted for. I do not read a lot of young adult fiction. I bought this book because I read Juliet Rosetti books. As I read this book, I thought to myself, Juliet is quietly killing this writing thing. You’re Not Who They Say You Are is a YA novel that is an enjoyable read for anyone.
The main character Rowan is a girl sent from a secure detention center to a residential center that is a farm. Perhaps this is confirmation bias, but Rowan is a complex character that supports my belief that children end up in a correctional setting because of mental illness and trauma. Rosetti shows this without avoiding the rough edges that a real Rowan would have. Yet, she also shows the tension Rowan’s heart has with those behaviors Rowan displays.
I highly recommend this book to anyone of any age. I also recommend this book to anyone with a daughter or a granddaughter that wants a book with a twilight love story, but one in which the heroine actually gets to save the day. Rowan is definitely attracted to Theo, but without the bad-boy vibe. In fact, he is a great contrast to Rowan.
Rosetti’s writing is economically beautiful, creating a full world without bogging down in exposition. I really appreciated that this book has a fantasy element that is handled in a realistic way. Rowan and her partner in crime Luz are heroes, but they faulter and have faults. Without spoiling any of the fun, there is a fantastic place in the book, but, again, Rosetti draws this fantastical place in a realistic way that makes you want to google earth the area.