Book Review: The Victoria in My Head by Janelle Milanes

34091699Title & Author: The Victoria in My Head by Janelle Milanes

Genre: Young Adult- Contemporary

Release Date:  September 19th 2017

Series: Standalone

Publisher: Simon Pulse

Source: ARC via Publisher

Description: Victoria Cruz inhabits two worlds: In one, she is a rock star, thrashing the stage with her husky voice and purple-streaked hair. In the other, currently serving as her reality, Victoria is a shy teenager with overprotective Cuban parents, who sleepwalks through her life at the prestigious Evanston Academy. Unable to overcome the whole paralyzing-stage-fright thing, Victoria settles for living inside her fantasies, where nothing can go wrong and everything is set to her expertly crafted music playlists.

But after a chance encounter with an unattainably gorgeous boy named Strand, whose band seeks a lead singer, Victoria is tempted to turn her fevered daydreams into reality. To do that, she must confront her insecurities and break away from the treadmill that is her life. Suddenly, Victoria is faced with the choice of staying on the path she’s always known and straying off-course to find love, adventure, and danger.

From debut author Janelle Milanes comes a hilarious and heartfelt tale of the spectacular things that can happen when you go after what you really want.


I received this book in exchange for an honest review.

I am having such a hard time writing this review. I enjoyed the band/friendship aspect of this book but the romance and constant drama was off putting. I’m realizing that given I am twenty-six this year my experience with being fifteen/sixteen was over a decade ago, (Man I feel old.) and I just don’t connect to the bitchy drama of teenage rebellion anymore. I get that at that age everything seems like the end of the world  but that doesn’t mean I want to constantly be reading about it.

The Pros

  • The Victoria in my Head has a great diverse cast and each character brings something different to the story.
  • I really enjoyed reading about Victoria’s dealings with Quinceañera’s.
  • Strand was a pretty decent guy once you actually got past his playboy status.
  • Spotlight on high school pressure for college/expectations from your parents on what to do with your future.
  • Non absent parents.
  • Realistic portrayal on society/peer pressure on teenage youth. (How fast do I need to put out before he gets tired of me, how soon till we kiss, do we do more than kissing after the first date? etc)
  • Lots of “firsts” (First kiss, first boyfriend, first date, etc.)
  • Music based. Really liked that each chapter opened up the name of a different song/band.

The Cons

  • Victoria fought/bitched/whined to/about her parents constantly.
  • Everything was highly intense feeling.
  • Victoria drinking = a terrible idea and why the hell would she continue to do so when she turns into a word vomit bitch queen?
  • Levi was a terrible friend and boyfriend. He put the band before everything else constantly.
  • Honestly, I don’t think Victoria was a very good friend or daughter but I guess that’s what teen years are for.
  • The band took a serious back seat to all the drama in the band mates lives and I was really hoping we would get more concerts/band practice scenes.

Ultimately it was a quick read that held only part of my attention. I wouldn’t go so far as to say I would be willing to buy it, but it was enjoyable all the same.

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