Official Rating: 5/5
“Samantha drove the car that killed her dad. Now racked with guilt, the 17-year-old girl racer from Oklahoma promises to fulfill the racing dreams they once shared. Even if it kills her. Samantha sneaks into a private testing session and impresses the eccentric owner of a Formula 1 racing team who takes a chance on the outspoken, yet crazy-talented teen girl. Samantha pushes herself, pushes her car, pushes her luck at 200 miles per hour. She battles a seven-time world champion and Ferrari racing god who was once a crush-worthy hero to a teen girl, but now a dream-crushing rival to a young adult woman. Samantha befriends the nerdy-cute nephew of the team’s owner who she leans on for support and to keep her sanity. Yet his gentle advances towards romance clash with Samantha’s racing goals. For advice on what to do, Samantha wants to ask her two sisters, but they won’t speak to her. Not since she told them the real truth about Dad’s accident. The real truth about that dark and rainy night that splits her family in two. All Samantha’s problems come to a head at a place called Spa in the lush Belgian forest. A place infamous for killing race car drivers. The teen girl must use all her skill, all her daring, and all her luck to win it all and become the young woman she’s destined to be. But only if she can beat the Ferrari next to her. And only if she can conquer her fear of racing in the rain. And only if she can get her hands on the steering wheel to stop shaking. Fans of Courtney Summers’ strong female characters and those who love action-packed books like The Hunger Games should find Skid exciting and emotionally compelling. Fans of Ally Carter’s Heist Society should enjoy the international settings and lifestyles.”
Let’s be honest. I barely know anything about Formula One Racing. Actually, not even barely, I don’t know anything about formula racing. Yet, despite the plot being centered around racing, I loved this book so much that I would be willing to read it again.
I loved Samantha. She had such an amazing amount of spunk, realistic flaws, insecurities, and struggles and I loved her for it. Her situation, in my opinion, was a bit far-fetched, but, as I said before, because I know very little about Formula One Racing, maybe it isn’t so far-fetched. Even so, I loved Samantha’s character. She has a deep chasm in her heart that has not been filled yet, because she is the one that killed her father, but rarely does she let that stop her. (I refuse to give anything away about this book, so the review might be a little short, but should you read this book, I want you to read it with a mind that hasn’t read spoilers.) It was difficult for Samantha, was much was obvious, after telling her family the truth about her father’s death and having to come to terms with her fear of driving in the rain. But she pushed on and never stopped. While I couldn’t connect with Samantha’s struggles completely, as they weren’t my struggles, I still felt for her and the burdens she carried because of her past. The character development for Samantha was wonderfully done. She grew up gradually at a steady pace and at first, you may or may not notice it, but at sooner or later you do. It’s a realistic turn around, she doesn’t go from “bratty snotty kid” to “young woman that attends charities every day”, but rather she faces her fears and experiences the reality of the world. But she doesn’t let it change her for the worse, instead, she learns from it and keeps on going.
Every now and then, Samantha was a bit annoying. Sometimes her behavior was just atrocious, especially for a seventeen year old. She had me burying my face into my pillow and cringing from second-hand embarrassment because of her responses to some situations, but that just made her more real to me. Who hasn’t made a few mistakes in their reactions before? I did have an issue with how she handled once incident, because it was such a cliché way of handling it. Completely unnecessary, I don’t understand why so many male and female characters go down that road, but they do. Again, I’m not giving away any spoilers, but if you read the book, you may understand what I’m talking about.
Manny was so loveable that I could have cried. I absolutely adored Manny and I am so glad that he is who he is because he is by far one of the best male characters I have read about. He was adorable, respectful, charming, sweet, loyal, patient (to a point), respectable, and so many other wonderful qualities. We all need a Manny in our lives. I will admit, I was squealing at some points of the book when it was in his point of view. Speaking of his point of view, I appreciated his lack of dirty thoughts. I loved that his thoughts were clean, but still had a manly tone to them. I seriously admire Solter for pulling that off.
The rest of the characters I enjoyed too. Not a single one of them were merely plot-pushers and Samantha treated the ones she was in contact the most as family and I loved that. It wasn’t always easy, considering she was a seventeen year old F1 test driver among famous F1 Racers, she didn’t let their skepticism of drag her down. She treated them with respect and waited until she was given a chance to show them the gift she had at racing. Even her family, when they weren’t acting like family, she treated with love and care and it was admirable.
The plot was great, I was on the edge of my seat and I could hardly put the book down to even go to sleep, despite having a 5AM morning awaiting me. It was intriguing and I wasn’t bored for a second, I was sorry to have it end. However, it ended at the right moment, it wasn’t too short and it didn’t go on for too long, so I can’t complain.
All in all, if you haven’t figured it out yet, I loved this book, completely, and I highly recommend it.