Victoria Grace the Jerkface
S. E. Clancy
Published May 15, 2020
About Victoria Grace the Jerkface
Ever since Tori Weston and MamaBear were abandoned by her dad, finances have been tighter than a new pair of skinny jeans. As if keeping her grades up for scholarships and working every spare moment weren’t enough, Tori gets suckered into visiting a retirement home and paired with ancient resident Marigold Williams. After learning she’s the only one to visit Marigold in decades, Tori becomes a regular at Willow Springs. Besides, someone has to help with her history homework.
Corbin Dallas barges into Tori’s life with a prosthetic leg and a dimple, working his way into her hectic schedule. Though she tries to deny it, there’s something beyond his Texan drawl that gets Tori hoping she’s more than his sidekick. Together, they race to find Marigold’s missing family before she fades away. Tori ditches her soul-sucking job, along with her dreams of having a paint-peeled clunker to call her own, in order to help her friend one last time.
It took me a bit to get into this book, but by the end, I had laughed and cried right along with the characters.
Tori is kind of grumpy. Sometimes it can be cute, but especially at the beginning, she just seemed to complain about everything. I love her relationship with her mom, who’s a police officer. The things they talk about and their text message exchanges felt authentic and really endeared Tori to me.
I also love Marigold. She’s classy and sharp and really brings out the best in Tori. That relationship and its effect on Tori really made the whole book, for me. When I was in high school, I visited and befriended a woman in a nursing home, so in some ways, it reminded me of that, and made me miss her all over again.
There were a couple things I found problematic, though. One is that at one point, Tori and Marigold discuss the Japanese Internment camps in the US during World War II, which is where many of Marigold’s family members died. Tori makes a comment, like, “how horrible,” and Marigold responds with something like, “not really, no,” and goes on to defend the US for imprisoning Japanese citizens– it was a time of fear, Japanese soldiers had killed Americans, etc. I felt shocked, if I’m honest. It’s the only time anything like that happens (which doesn’t make it okay), and later when Tori learns more about the internment camps, she’s horrified and disturbed about it.
Later in the story, Tori’s love interest does something really out of character and then basically chalks it up to being inexperienced with girls, and she immediately forgives him. I had a hard time buying into that– both his misstep and the speed with which she forgives him. She’s got a history of men betraying her, so it seemed like this would take a lot more to get past.
On the whole, I enjoyed some things about the book, especially Tori’s relationships with her mom and Marigold, and the way her relationship with Marigold impacts her life.
Recommended for Ages 12 up.
Victoria befriends an elderly woman whose mother was Japanese. Her friend Corbin has a prosthetic leg.
Profanity/Crude Language Content
A couple crude references to bodily functions.
Kissing between boy and girl.
References to attending church and behaving in a Christian way.
References to the Japanese Internment camps in the US during World War II. References to wounded soldiers in hospitals where supplies and staff have run short during World War II, when Marigold was young.
Note: I received a free copy of VICTORIA GRACE THE JERKFACE in exchange for my honest review. This post contains affiliate links, which do not cost you anything to use, but which help support the costs of running this blog.