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The Streets Are Ours by Leila Sales - Review

Monday, November 23, 2020

Where did I get it? I bought it a few months ago when I did a bit of a Waterstones splurge. I hadn't even heard of it, but the premise sounded good so I decided to buy it - it was only a few quid I think. 

What's it about? Arden is sixteen and is best friends with Lindsey. They live in Cumberland, Maryland, which is a tiny town basically in the middle of nowhere. Arden lives with her dad and brother and, until very recently, her mum. Her mum has left the family and gone to New York for a while. At the beginning of the book, some pot is found in Arden's locker. The problem is that it's Lindsey's, but Arden takes the rap. This is what she's done for her whole life - been more loyal to people than they have been to her. Arden gets suspended for her troubles, and Lindsey carries on as normal.

Arden is a theatre kid, but backstage. She loves it. Her boyfriend Chris wants to be a Hollywood star but honestly, he's a bit of a douche. He rarely seems to think of her first. Her dad is a workaholic and she's looking after her little brother most of the time. One night, in desperation, she googles a question about why no one loves her the way she loves them, and she comes across a blog.

It's written by a teenager called Peter, who lives in New York and who works in a bookstore. He meets this girl called Bianca and the two seem like soulmates. Arden becomes obsessed with Peter's blog, and eventually, on one crazy night in Cumberland, she sets off to NYC to meet him. 

I love a road trip slash escapism book and this is what I felt this was for a lot of it. I felt a lot of sympathy for Arden and wanted her to succeed. I did not like Chris and felt entirely validated with what happened with him. I liked Lindsey but agreed that she wasn't the easiest person to be friends with. I really LOVED the parties too, I need more teens at parties. 

What age range is it for? 13+ 

Are any main characters LGBTQ+? Yeah Lindsey is gay and I liked her subplot. 

Are any main characters people of colour? Yes 

Are any main characters disabled either mentally or physically? No 

Is there any sex stuff? No, there's some discussion of it 

Are drugs mentioned or used? The pot, obviously. There is marijuana use a couple of times, but it's not bad. 

Is there any talk of death? No 

Are there swear words? No, and I did think they were perhaps missing a couple of times. 


What criticisms do I have? The first half was a liiiitle bit slow for me. It picked up really soon and I ended up loving it, so I'm really not criticising too hard. 

I think some people might criticise the ending but for me, it was really real life and I liked it. 

Would I recommend the book? Yes, especially if you like ordinary teens doing pretty ordinary but sometimes stupid things. 

Why did I choose to read it at this point in life? It was down the side of the bed and I kept noticing it. 


What do I think of the cover? I LOVE it! I think it's really appealing. 


What other books is it like? Bits of it reminded me of Unpregnant

How many stars? Five out of five, it's really good fun. 


Where is the book going now? I'll keep it I think! 

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