The Fixer- Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Synopsis: Sixteen-year-old Tess Kendrick has spent her entire life on her grandfather’s ranch. But when her estranged sister Ivy uproots her to D.C., Tess is thrown into a world that revolves around politics and power. She also starts at Hardwicke Academy, the D.C. school for the children of the rich and powerful, where she unwittingly becomes a fixer for the high school set, fixing teens’ problems the way her sister fixes their parents’ problems.

And when a conspiracy surfaces that involves the family member of one of Tess’s classmates, love triangles and unbelievable family secrets come to light and life gets even more interesting—and complicated—for Tess.

 

Violence

The Justice dies- thought to be murdered by a doctor. A father hits his daughter. Three characters get in a fight, which they cover up as a ‘slip’. Character rumoured to have committed suicide, but Tess suspects murder. A character’s father committed suicide, which the Fixer covered as a car accident. A reporter’s throat is slit; another character dies. Tess is kidnapped and threatened; a bomb is strapped to Ivy. The house is under lockdown and the kidnapper is shot.

 

Romance/Sexuality

Tess talks of castrating a bull, after finding three guys looking at incriminating photos of a girl. Henry and Tess dance. Ivy had become pregnant with Tess when she was a teen and unmarried. Asher flirts with no meaning behind it.

 

Alcohol/Substance

A character mentions that she had had a past incident with prozac. Asher gets drunk from drinking pina coladas. Tess is drugged by the kidnapper, and then given the counteractive shot.

 

Authority

Tess stands up to a teacher on behalf of a classmate. Ivy solves problems, most of them shrouded in politics. Keyes is called a ‘kingmaker’ because he can pull strings with his money and connections. Police arrests character as a show of power.

 

Language

Mentions of hell, pain in the as*, d*mn and help me God, dear god, thank God and God knows. What the… and psychotic little… (trails off).

 

Religion

The school has a chapel, and Asher and Tess’ excuse for being there is prayer.

 

Overall feel: A suspenseful thriller, that leaves you wanting more. Tess is a strong character, smart and witty. She finds herself ‘fixing’ problems, when she didn’t want to, and so becomes involved in the mystery and intrigue of D.C. With a little language, allusions to sexuality, and the murders, it may be more suitable for older readers.

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