Firsts by Laurie Elizabeth Flynn - ARC Review

Title: Firsts
Author: Laurie Elizabeth Flynn
Publisher: St Martin's Griffin
Publication Date: January 5th 2016
Part of A Series?: No - Standalone:)
I Got A Copy Through: The Publisher via NetGalley

Blurb Description: Seventeen-year-old Mercedes Ayres has an open-door policy when it comes to her bedroom, but only if the guy fulfills a specific criteria: he has to be a virgin. Mercedes lets the boys get their awkward, fumbling first times over with, and all she asks in return is that they give their girlfriends the perfect first time- the kind Mercedes never had herself.

Keeping what goes on in her bedroom a secret has been easy- so far. Her absentee mother isn’t home nearly enough to know about Mercedes’ extracurricular activities, and her uber-religious best friend, Angela, won’t even say the word “sex” until she gets married. But Mercedes doesn’t bank on Angela’s boyfriend finding out about her services and wanting a turn- or on Zach, who likes her for who she is instead of what she can do in bed.

When Mercedes’ perfect system falls apart, she has to find a way to salvage her reputation and figure out where her heart really belongs in the process. Funny, smart, and true-to-life, FIRSTS is a one-of-a-kind young adult novel about growing up.


“Everyone’s a version of somebody else.”

A girl that does other girls the awkward favour of getting their boyfriends through their first times? Just so that (honestly) these girls she barely knows will have the best possible first time they could have – but with one catch – absolute discretion? In high school? 

First WOAH - I mean pretty original, right? And also, there’s no way that a secret like that doesn’t get out…

I’m always on the lookout for a Young Adult book with a new take on things, and Firsts definitely gave me one. The thing I wanted most from the book was for it to make me believe the story – for Laurie Elizabeth Flynn to make me believe the story she had written, and to understand everyone’s motivations in it. And while she did, while I definitely understood where Mercedes was coming from, she wasn’t the girl I thought she would be, after having the courage to do what she was doing. (Yes, I mean courage, because even if the sex was partially for her, she was also doing it with the intention of helping AND come on, would you? Do what she did that is?)

Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t at all about the sex – that part (the why part) I completely understood – but more than anything, I felt like she spent the entire time feeling sorry for herself, and then trying to justify what she was doing, and then feeling sorry for herself again as she pushed the people who cared about her away. I mean, so what if sex is what gives her comfort? Why is that the worst thing in the world? Why is that a bad thing at all? Why is it so shunned? 

During some parts in the book, I felt like she understood what I was talking about – that sex itself was so regressed, nobody likes to talk about it, and no girl in the entire universe should want to do it, because she’s definitely a slut if she does. And then came the self-pity spirals. And then I lost her. Because Mercedes Ayres is a character that I can only describe at this point as someone BEGGING for attention (NOT because of the sex, because of what came after – what she said and did- not whom)

I guess, I just felt, that when dealing with a topic this sensitive, that the girl willing to help other girls because of what was inflicted onto her at such a young age would actually know why she was doing what she was doing and that she could own it, and not use it as an excuse to feel sorry for/ hate herself.

But SECOND, I admire that story. It took guts to write, and that gutsy writing made me feel like the characters were extremely gutsy as well. I liked the characters, especially Faye – who, coincidentally, is what I expected Mercedes to be – and Zach as well *swoon*

I’m not very sure if I explained what I felt with this book, but it’s way too fresh in my head to form anything more coherent…

In the end, however, I just think you should read this book because of the powerful message it manages to send across in the end!

3.75 Stars.

1 comment:

  1. Awesome review! Yeah, no matter my problems with it, I can't deny that It has a great message. I would totally recommend this to anyone.