Tiffany Sly Lives Here Now by Dana L. Davis (DRC): An Addictive Read with a Refreshingly Honest Narrator

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4 stars

Tiffany Sly just lost her mom to cancer, and now she finds out she has to leave her hometown of Chicago to live with the biological dad she’s never known, which is the icing on sixteen-year-old Tiffany’s cake. Not.

Anthony Stone is a rich man with four other daughters—and a bunch of rules for his family. Tiffany tries to fit in, but her new luxurious, but super-strict, home and standoffish sister London aren’t helping. The only thing that makes her new life bearable is the strange boy across the street who knows death as much as Tiffany has.

But Tiffany has a secret. Another man claims he’s Tiffany’s real dad—and she only has seven days before he shows up to demand a paternity test and the truth comes out. With her life about to fall apart all over again, Tiffany finds herself discovering unexpected truths about her father, her mother and herself, and realizing that maybe family is in the bonds you make—and that life means sometimes taking risks.

I definitely enjoyed reading this debut!

Tiffany Sly Lives Here Now is thoroughly real with its relatable and realistic main character, Tiffany Sly, who is funny and real and a little bit naïve, but thoroughly genuine.

I loved Tiffany Sly. I want to be Tiffany Sly’s best friend. I want Tiffany Sly as my best friend. Her voice really shines through in this addictive debut, and I can honestly say that I found her to be a really interesting and fun narrator.

The one thing I really love about Harlequin Teen titles is how addictive they are–and Tiffany Sly is no exception. Her voice really shines through in a natural manner and it never feels awkward or stunted to read. I love how she has her quirks but Davis writes her in a way that gives you the impression that Davis is very comfortable in forming Tiffany’s voice, which I thought was done very well.

She has these quirks, like listing happy items (Pixy Stix, Care Bears, etc.) when she’s angry or stressed and it’s not like a super huge deal, it’s just part of her narrative. Davis incorporates this seamlessly and I loved reading that. (Especially because I am very fond of Care Bears, although I do feel like that was such a “back then” kind of thing that kids these days don’t know what a Care Bear really is. Those neon ones are a disgrace, just saying.)

I sped through this novel, and I just really loved reading about Tiffany and her emotions and thoughts and feelings. You can really get into her head, which I greatly enjoyed doing, and although life is pretty sucky for her, she still finds the bright side in things, which I found really nice.

But, there were a few things that didn’t completely float my boat.

One of the biggest was how this book strongly advertises “Two dads. Seven days.” or “She only has seven days to get to know the dad she just met” or something like that, but it felt like this was very much underemphasized throughout the novel. When I read the tagline on the cover after reading, I was really confused for a minute because I didn’t get what it was referring to.

Because although Tiffany Sly does have this problem, I didn’t really recognize it as the very large, very important central idea of the book. So either the marketing was funky and a bit misleading, or the emphasis was weird. I just felt like the book didn’t dedicate enough emphasis and time to that specific aspect of the plotline and the urgency behind that tagline to warrant the tagline’s existence.

The other thing that I wasn’t too fond of was the lack of resolution. I felt like there were a lot of loose ends in this novel that didn’t really get cleaned up. I read a digital review copy, but I was approved after the pub date so I assume this is the same as the published edition?

But to me it felt like Tiffany barely got any closure. She got closure with her dad, her step mom, and maybe a couple other things, but I feel like she definitely didn’t get closure with her sisters (and one of her sisters’ mean girl friends), her struggling academics, the life she left behind, her grief over her mother, the guy she punched, etc.

I just feel like a lot of these plotlines weren’t really wrapped up. And although life is messy and not necessarily wrapped up in a perfect bow, I do wish that it had more resolution at the end.

Overall, I really enjoyed reading Tiffany Sly Lives Here Now and absolutely loved the intersectionality of mental health and black girl representation, as well as other naturally-incorporated diverse characters. I’ll be keeping an eye on Dana L. Davis for what she comes up with next!

If you like super diverse casts, an open and genuine narrator, family themes, and/or absolutely zero romance, then I definitely recommend you check out Tiffany Sly Lives Here Now!

Thank you so much to Harlequin Teen and Netgalley for providing me with a digital review copy in exchange for an honest review!

much love, vicky

Which contemporaries featuring black main characters do you love? Send me recs because we need way more of these (esp. with black joy)!

4 thoughts on “Tiffany Sly Lives Here Now by Dana L. Davis (DRC): An Addictive Read with a Refreshingly Honest Narrator

  1. Oh this is a lovely review ❤ I have heard great things about this book so far and I'm really looking forward to reading it, even more now. You make the main character sound really good and I'm eager to discover her unique voice 🙂
    It is so annoying, when the tagline of a book is so misleading / not necessarily what is really emphazised in the actual story. It just… doesn't make sense and just leaves the readers confused before, because they get into a book with some expectations and might be completely disappointed when they finish their read. I'm glad that, despite that little issue with that book, you still overall enjoyed it 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes! I really related to her voice (and the Care Bears won me over even though they’re literally only mentioned once). I found the tagline weird and not really the main theme of the book, but hopefully you won’t be as misled as I was when you read it! I hope that you enjoy reading!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ve been seeing this around. Glad you enjoyed it! So glad there’s lots of rep and that for once there’s no romance! I do love a good romance but gosh, so many YA books focus on that + I just need a break.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes! Some things just don’t need romance and this is one of them, which is partly why I enjoyed it so much! I hope you like it if you read!

      Like

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