The Trouble with Destiny by Lauren Morrill
Published by Delacorte
on December 8th 2015
It’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey...
With her trusty baton and six insanely organized clipboards, drum major Liza Sanders is about to take Destiny by storm—the boat, that is. When Liza discovered that her beloved band was losing funding, she found Destiny, a luxury cruise ship complete with pools, midnight chocolate buffets, and a $25,000 spring break talent show prize.
Liza can’t imagine senior year without the band, and nothing will distract her from achieving victory. She’s therefore not interested when her old camp crush, Lenny, shows up on board, looking shockingly hipster-hot. And she’s especially not interested in Russ, the probably-as-dumb-as-he-is-cute prankster jock whose ex, Demi, happens be Liza’s ex–best friend and leader of the Athenas, a show choir that’s the band’s greatest competition.
But it’s not going to be smooth sailing. After the Destiny breaks down, all of Liza’s best-laid plans start to go awry. Liza likes to think of herself as an expert at almost everything, but when it comes to love, she’s about to find herself lost at sea.
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.
I love Lauren Morrill’s story telling style. She has a way about her writing that reminds me of the teen late 90s/early 2000s movies I loved. She did it with Being Sloane Jacobs and Meant to Be and she did it again with The Trouble with Destiny. I mean I found Trouble to be predictable but it made me smile in that predictability just like all those movies did so to me that’s a win.
The Trouble with Destiny is about Liza the drum major of her high school band. She is the leader, the one keeping things together, the one in charge. So when the band is in trouble of losing their funding Liza gets them on a cruise for performing high school groups in hopes of winning $25,000 and saving the activity she loves so much. But as all Liza’s plans start to fall apart and the cruise is nothing as expected Liza starts to learn sometimes you can’t be in control of everything. Sometimes life just has to happen and when it does miraculous things can do…maybe even falling in love.
When you have a bunch of high school kids on a boat, shenanigans will go down. There was a lot of stuff that happened to these kids and situations they put themselves in that kept the story fun and interesting. The boat being stuck with limited power was a fun way to keep all the main characters in the same place without having it seem unnatural. And the music/performances made sure to keep everyone in the same orbit.
I took a cruise a few years back and because of that I found the setting for The Trouble with Destiny to be perfect. It brought back all the memories I had from my trip and made me want to go back. TO be honest I actually pictured the boat I was on as the Destiny was described (minus the pool. Our pool was teeny tiny). The setting was perfect to have a bunch of kids up to hijinks and worked really well. It also made me wish I was on another cruise so Morrill nailed it.
This is where I had a little trouble. Liza super annoyed me. I think she was a little too much a lot of the time so I had a slight bit of trouble connecting to her. But as the book progressed I liked a lot how she changed. Lenny was another one that I had trouble with. I wasn’t crazy about his behavior a lot of the time and that annoyed me. Now Russ I LOVED. He was the fun, comic relief. He was the Pacey Witter of the bunch and he just made me smile, especially with his dealings with Liza, his polar opposite. All in all I liked the characters as a bunch but there were just some flaws to each of them that did bug me a tad.
The Trouble with Destiny was adorable and fun. That’s what the whole thing came down to. Was it perfect? Nope. But I enjoyed it and it made me smile and brought me back to a few of my favorite movies. Not to mention the whole cruise thing. I look forward to what Ms. Morrill has in store for us next.
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