The Karma Club by Jessica Brody
Madison Kasparkova always thought she understood how Karma works. It’s that mysterious, powerful force that brings harmony to the universe. You know—do good things and you will be rewarded, do something bad and Karma will make sure you get what’s coming to you. A sort of cosmic balancing act.
But when Mason Brooks, Maddy’s boyfriend of two years, gets caught tongue-wrestling with Miss Perfect Body Heather Campbell, and absolutely nothing happens to either of them—except that they wind up the hot new couple of Colonial High School, it seems like Karma has officially left Maddy in the lurch. That’s why Maddy and her best friends, Angie and Jade, decide to start the Karma Club—a secret, members-only organization whose sole purpose is to clean up the messes that the universe has been leaving behind. Whether they’re modifying Heather Campbell’s acne cream as part of “Operation Butterface,” or righting a few wrongs when it comes to Angie and Jade’s own slimy exes, they know they’re just doing what Karma should have done in the first place. They’re taking care of one another.
Sometimes, though, it isn’t wise to meddle with the universe. Because it turns out, when you mess with Karma, Karma messes back. Now Maddy must find a way to balance her life for good, even as everything around her seems to be toppling to the ground.
I LOVED The Karma Club! This was an exciting, fun, positive read. I didn't really know what to expect going into The Karma Club, as I haven't read any of Jessica's previous (adult) writing before. The characters, plot, descriptions, everything was pitch perfect and tied together to make a wonderful story.
To begin with, the characters in this novel were terrific. Maddy has to be one of my all time favorite protagonists. She was funny, inspiring, and just wanted to do the right thing. Her two best friends, Jade and Angie, were also great. Sometimes best friends in novels aren't that developed and I just can't get attached to them. I didn't have a problem doing that in The Karma Club though. Jade and Angie were each wonderfully developed and readers could relate to them, just like with Maddy. Maddy's parents were also likable and played large roles in the novel. You could tell they loved each other, even when they argued. Maddy's younger sister was a character I would have liked to see more of, other than a few random scenes she wasn't really a main character. Other than that, I have no complaints about the characters. They were all well done and realistic. I would love to see another book with any of The Karma Club's characters!
The plot was very original. When I first began reading I wasn't so sure, but the more it developed and moved, I realized how great and unique The Karma Club was going to be. The pranks the girls pulled were awesome, and I enjoyed watching them plot them out. Karma is something I didn't know a lot about, so I was learning along with Maddy and her friends. The novel was really inspiring in the way that it proved how good deeds get rewarded and bad deeds...don't. By the end, Maddy had to work hard to understand Karma, and where she went wrong with it. The way all of the bad things that happened to the characters tied together in the end was interesting, it definitely proved how important it is not to mess with Karma or other peoples' lives.
The romance aspect was very sweet as well. I don't want to give anything away, but let's just say the swoon-worthy guy Maddy falls for is definitely not who I was expecting :)
The Karma Club did have some serious and inspirational aspects to it, but overall it was a witty, entertaining, and overall well done YA debut. With memorable characters and a fantastic, well orchestrated plot, this is one of my favorite reads of 2010! Definitely go pick up a copy today!
Overall: 5 out of 5 stars
April 27, 2010/Farrar, Straus, and Giroux (BFYR)/272 Pages/Young Adult
Source: Publisher (ARC)
The awesome trailer!