Diplomatic Immunity by Brodi Ashton Book Review

Diplomatic Immunity was one of my picks for the September new books released that you should read. When I saw that this was available through the local library's digital account, I had to download it and read it. Read below to see my thoughts about this new release.

YA new book review

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Publishers synopsis - "Aspiring reporter Piper Baird decides to write a scathing exposé on the overprivileged students at an elite Washington, DC, school, only for her life to change when she begins to fall for the story's main subject, in this new realistic contemporary romance from Brodi Ashton, the author of the Everneath trilogy.

Piper Baird has always dreamed of becoming a journalist. So when she scores a scholarship to exclusive Chiswick Academy in Washington, DC, she knows it’s her big opportunity. Chiswick offers the country’s most competitive prize for teen journalists—the Bennington scholarship—and winning will ensure her acceptance to one of the best schools in the country.

Piper isn’t at Chiswick for two days before she witnesses the intense competition in the journalism program—and the extreme privilege of the young and wealthy elite who attend her school. And Piper knows access to these untouchable students just might give her the edge she’ll need to blow the lid off life at the school in a scathing and unforgettable exposé worthy of the Bennington."

First Impressions

Book cover image diplomatic immunity

When I read the synopsis of Diplomatic Immunity, I thought that it would be a mixture of two of my favorite YA series - Embassy Row by Ally Carter and The Fixer by Jennifer Lynn Barnes. Looking at the cover of the book I knew that it would have a more romantic element. I had never heard of the author Brodi Ashton, but I'm always interested in finding a good new author to follow, so I decided to add it to my "must read" list.

My Synopsis

Meet Piper (Pipe or Pip for short), an all around normal girl who has her heart set on becoming a journalist. She wins a scholarship to an exclusive high school in Washington DC and realizes that this is the perfect stepping stone to a prized college scholarship to her dream school - Columbia. All she has to do is ingratiate herself into the group of DI (diplomatic immunity) kids so she can write an undercover story that will shock everyone.

Pip meets Rafael Amador the minute she hits campus, starting out with an embarrassing wardrobe malfunction for our heroine. Rafael is the perfect, exotically handsome guy with a little too much money and freedom. He's the one Pip picks to use to get the inside scoop. But as her feelings begin to feel a bit too read, what should she do? Stay her course toward her dreams and write her story, or shelve the story in favor of a relationship.

My Thoughts

Piper has a lot going on in her life - working to scrape by, dreams of a demanding career, a brother with autism that most people don't take the time to understand, and a family that isn't financially stable. In her senior year she enters a new school that is very "have vs. have not". That turns her onto the idea of the expose of privileged kids.

Piper needs the exclusive scholarship offered at her school so she can go to Columbia and study journalism. She is determined to get the story because her parents can't pay for college tuition. I can see her reasons for wanting to write the undercover story - why is it okay for the privileged to get away scott free with things while regular people get detention (or jail) for the same things.

As Pip gets to know Rafael though, she sees deeper reasons for his wild actions and realizes that things aren't always as perfect as they seem.

Piper is a quirky person - she has conversations in her head and sometimes doesn't realize that she accidentally speaks out loud. I actually do that too, so it was funny to read about. I liked the way we got to know Rafael better as the book progresses. The part I didn't really like was how Pip couldn't tell her friend the truth, that she was too scared to tell the truth. I guess though that if she had been honest, then the book wouldn't have taken the turn that it did toward the end.

My first impressions were wrong - the books that I thought it would be like have a lot more mystery and action. This was definitely more a realistic romance book and a journey to self-discovery. I wasn't disappointed with how the story went.

This book actually brings up a few good points to think about.

  • How far are you willing to go, or who will you hurt, to see your dreams come true?
  • What are you willing to sacrifice for a relationship?
  • When you are faced with a devastating challenge, how do you respond and how does it make you a better person?

I spent a few hours in entertaining reading. I don't think that I will read it again, but I did like it.

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