Book Review: We are the Goldens by Dana Reinhardt

May 22, 2014 Blog, Book Reviews 0

I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Book Review: We are the Goldens by Dana ReinhardtWe are the Goldens by Dana Reinhardt
Published by Wendy Lamb Books on May 27th 2014
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Pages: 208
Source: NetGalley
One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

Nell knows a secret about her perfect, beautiful sister Layla. If she tells, it could blow their world apart.

When Nell and Layla were little, Nell used to call them Nellaya. Because to Nell, there was no difference between where she started and her adored big sister ended. They're a unit; divorce made them rely on each other early on, so when one pulls away, what is the other to do? But now, Nell's a freshman in high school and Layla is changing, secretive. And then Nell discovers why. Layla is involved with one of their teachers. And even though Nell tries to support Layla, to understand that she's happy and in love, Nell struggles with her true feelings: it's wrong, and she must do something about it.(


my thoughts done


What an interesting POV! This story is read as a sister talking to her older sister and is fabulously done. I was so into it that I made sure to read every single word! I really did not want to miss a thing.

What starts as a sister talking to her sister normally I kept asking myself WHY she was talking to her sister and where this was going. So my mind was wandering a bit trying to figure out what in the world was going on. Of course my imagination is so much worse than what happened in the book but I didn’t even come close to figuring out the story behind this and as I got closer to the end the story got more and more intense.

The characters are great but I really liked Nell. The fact that she is trying so hard to save this relationship with her sister is fabulous but at the same time so difficult to read through. I can actually feel the pain that she feels as she’s talking. Layla on the other hand… ohh… she has some issues! I can sort of see why she does the things she does but at the same time I felt she was really selfish. She wound up getting on my nerves more than once and I just hoped that things would be resolved by the end of the book!

And speaking of the end… I’m not sure exactly how I feel about this! The end is not a cliff hanger because this is a stand alone, although, the way it ended there could be more. But there was no definitive ending. It just stopped. Nell said her piece and told her sister what she was planning to do and then done. DONE! So it is left for the reader to figure out in the end. Which was sort of crazy and brilliant but I want to know the ending!! The for reals ending.

I liked this enough even with all the drama and all the angst that I would totally read book two. Actually I really want to read book two now! I’m just sad that I think there will not be a book two!

Love the author. Curious about her work now!

the author

Why don’t you have a bio section?

Because I hate writing about myself.

But wouldn’t that be easier than answering a whole bunch of FAQs?

Maybe. Probably. Go on…

So where are you from?

I’m from Los Angeles, but now I live in San Francisco. Except for the summers where I go back to Los Angeles in search of the sun.

What are you doing when you aren’t writing?

Laundry, usually. Sometimes dishes. And I really like to walk near the Golden Gate Bridge.

Why don’t you run instead of walk?

Running is hard. And I’m sort of lazy.

Have you ever had a real job?

Yes. Of course I have. I’ve waited tables, worked with adolescents in foster care, read the slush pile at a publishing house, and fact checked for a movie magazine. I also worked for FRONTLINE on PBS and Peter Jennings at ABC. I went to law school, which I know doesn’t count as a job, but hey, that was a lot of work.

What’s your writing day like? Do you stick to a routine?

I like to write in the mornings. Sometimes that means I have to get up really early. I try to write 700 words a day — about three pages. I know there are lots of writers out there who can write way more than that. I know this because writers like to tell you about how many words they’ve written on FACEBOOK. So I try not to look at FACEBOOK when I’m writing. And anyway, I’ve learned that 700 words are about all I’m good for on any given day, and if I write more than that I usually end up getting rid of most of it later.

What, are you lazy or something?

I already told you I’m lazy. But seriously, 700 words are a lot of words. 700 of them, to be precise.

Where do you get your ideas?

From someplace inside my head.

That’s not really an answer.

Yes, it is. And it’s as honest an answer as I can give.

Are your books autobiographical?

Not really. I’m not adopted, I’ve never told a lie that sent someone to jail, I’ve never built a house or had a brother go to war. But there are always things in my books that come from my life or from the lives of the people around me. It would be impossible to make up everything.

Why do you write young adult fiction?

Because I was a young adult when I fell in love with reading and I can remember how books made me feel back then. How they provided both comfort and escape. That might make me sound like a shut-in, but I wasn’t. I was just open to the experience books offered, probably more open than I am now as an adult. And I like writing for that sort of audience.

What exactly is young adult fiction?

Lots of people have thought long and hard about this question and have had many intelligent things to say about voice and how YA books can’t spend too much time on adult characters, etc. I don’t have anything to add to the debate except to say that YA should be a place to go in the bookstore or library if you are looking for a coming of age story, no matter how old you are.

Do you have a favorite book?


Don’t be coy, what is it?

To Kill a Mockingbird.

How come there aren’t any vampires or wizards in your books?

Hmmmm… good question. Maybe I should write about vampires and wizards.

No, you shouldn’t. You wouldn’t be very good at that.

Thanks for the vote of confidence.

Did you wear a Soupy Sales sweatshirt when you were seven?

Does anybody even know who Soupy Sales is?

That’s what the Internet is for. Don’t avoid the question.

I’m sorry, is this really a Frequently Asked Question?

No. But, c’mon, tell us anyway.

Yes, I did. But I’m trying to portray myself as someone who wasn’t a total loser. So maybe you shouldn’t bring that up. And it also makes me sound ancient, which I’m not. Yet I had a Soupy Sales sweatshirt. And I loved it. It was yellow. And really soft.

You’re right. It does make you sound like a loser. – Goodreads


Dana’s Website

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