Review: Winning by Lara Deloza

26869849Winning by Lara Deloza

My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Received: Edelweiss
Publicatio Date: June 28th 2016
Publisher: HarperTeen
Point of View: 1st Person Feminine & Alternative
Recommended Age: 13+
Genres &  Themes: Young Adult, Romance, Contemporary, High School, Revenge, Anti-Hero, LGBT

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House of Cards meets Election in this wickedly entertaining story about an uber-ambitious high school junior.

Whoever said being nice would get you to the top?

Certainly not Alexandra Miles. She isn’t nice, but she’s more than skilled at playing the part. She floats through the halls of Spencer High, effortlessly orchestrating the actions of everyone around her, making people bend to her whim without even noticing they’re doing it. She is the queen of Spencer High—and it’s time to make it official.

Alexandra has a goal, you see—Homecoming Queen. Her ambitions are far grander than her small town will allow, but homecoming is just the first step to achieving total domination. So when peppy, popular Erin Hewett moves to town and seems to have a real shot at the crown, Alexandra has to take action.


It’s my job to size people up. To see what’s hiding beneath the surface—and then use that to my advantage.


2016 provides us with such surprising, diverse new contemporary stories, that I’m not entirely sure I want 2017 to come knocking at my door.

I am speechless. I’m frowning, trying to remember the last time I fell so deeply in love with a contemporary book and I just… can’t… remember. Fantasy novels are the ones to usually steal my heart, but then Winning came along and broke the unbreakable cycle.

I fell head over heels for this story.

Everyone wants something: Alexandra wants to be crowned Homecoming Queen, Sam desires Alexandra’s love, Ivy wishes for people to stopping treating her like a pariah and Sloane makes it her life quest to bring Alexandra down.

Because Alexandra is the devil wearing Prada.

Never waste a moment of your effort serving someone else’s goals. Always use their machinery to pave the road to your own success.

All of the characters mentioned above participate in the narration. In the beginning, we as readers don’t want to switch narrators because Alexandra seems to have so much to tell. However, seeing others` reactions to Alexandra’s sweet, manipulative talks becomes quickly addictive. And we want to see them retaliate.

They do. That’s when the revenge aspect of the story comes in.

You may think this is predictable. You may think you’ve already read a hundred books like this one. And you may also think it will just be another young adult contemporary story brimming with pathetic drama that focuses on rivalry between teenagers. But it isn’t.

It’s a mash-up of Pretty Little Liars, Gossip Girl and Burn for Burn.

She’s like the sun. You never really stop wanting to feel that warm, buttery light on your face. Even if you’ve been burned by it on more than one occasion, as I have.

I love anti-heroes; I always have and, hopefully, I always will. They’re challenging. They make us question our values; we know what they’re doing is wrong, but sometimes we can’t help but secretly hope they succeed in pulling off whatever scheme they’re concocting.

Alexandra Miles is one of the best anti-heroes I had the pleasure of meeting in contemporary young adult literature.

Winning is surprising in many ways. It starts in a certain way, we think we know where it’s going, but it frequently changes paths to confuse the reader and the characters themselves. We may have Alexandra’s point of view, but she’s purposefully withholding elements from the reader, too. It’s unpredictable.

‘‘So you want to fight evil with evil?’’

I have a feeling I’m supposed to say no, but I can’t. This is Lexi we’re talking about. I swallow and say, ‘‘Is there any other way?’’

I don’t mean to sound aggressive, but READ THIS BOOK NOW. I mean, when it hits the shelves. Calm down, Lola.

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10 thoughts on “Review: Winning by Lara Deloza

  1. I’m happy you liked it!

    This doesn’t sound like my cup of tea. I wasn’t a fan of Pretty Little Liars and most of the time I don’t enjoy revenge stories. Sometimes I do but this doesn’t sound like the ones I’d enjoy. Although the main character sounds so refreshing. I’ll pass.

    Great review 😀


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