Review: Rich and Mad by William Nicholson

Published: September 14, 2010

This is a compelling and beautifully written novel about first love, first sex, and everything in between. Maddy Fisher has decided to fall in love. And not just any sort of love: can't-eat can't-sleep crazy in love. Rich Ross is after the same thing. He's set his sights high, and he's going to make it happen. The problem is, in life's messy whirlwind of friends and lies and sex and porn, the real thing can be hard to fine. But there's always a first time for everything. . .

When I came across Rich and Mad on goodreads the first thing I noticed was the steamy cover. I loved how the couple was inside a phone booth, it made me think of England, somewhere I always wanted to go. After reading the attention-grabbing summary I marked the release date on my calendar. Unfortunately Rich and Mad didn't live up to my high expectations.

I read the book in about a day because I was really interested in finding out what happened with the two main characters' love lives. Both Rich and Maddy are pretty unlucky with love and are determined to find "the one" during this school year. Maddy sets her heart on the popular Joe and Rich has his eye on Maddy's sophisticated friend, Grace.

One of the parts I liked about the book was that both the main characters were falling for the wrong people. I enjoyed uncovering the truth that was hidden among the lies, that part really reminded me of high school. Even though, that part of the story was realistic, I had trouble relating the other parts of the book to real life.

I understand that in today's society there are a lot of unhealthy relationships between teens and that friends often cut each other down, but I felt almost all the friendships in Rich and Mad were negative ones. Now I'm not saying that I don't cuss, because honestly I have quite the fowl mouth, but I never call my friends cruel names. In this book I felt like one of the characters was having serious issues, but it was quickly over looked. The person clearly needed help and friends by her side, she didn't need to be bullied by the people she loved.

Unfortunately I felt that the romantic relationships in the book were rushed and not genuine. It seemed like the characters wanted so badly to be in love, that they rushed into all their decisions. To them, it was more important to be able to say they were in love and have had sex than it was to actually love their partner.

For me, the ending was extremely uncomfortable and felt forced. The whole time I kept thinking okay you guys really should stop, you're not ready... I felt like I was watching two people making a big mistake because they are making their decisions solely on what they thought everyone else their age was doing.

Awesome Quote:
"Maybe we're all like that, thought Rich. Maybe we all find when we speak that the words don't match out ideas. We talk to each other, but never know each other.
Loneliness is the default mode."

Characters: 2/5
Creativity: 3/5
Voice: 2/5
Plot: 1/5
Impact: 2/5
Overall: 2/5

Rich and Mad was a quick read that highlighted a lot of the problems with teen relationships. Even though I found the characters a little winy and too impulsive, I recommend this book if your looking for a unique some-what love story between two people who want nothing more than to be loved.



  1. I loved this book. It's a bummer to hear that you didn't like it :( Still, I can see where you were coming from and I agree with a lot of the points you make. Still, this book seemed really realistic to me and I guess that's why I enjoyed it as much as I did. Great review though :)

  2. Nice honest post. I'm still curious about this one though.

  3. Love the cover:D
    Sucks that it didnt reach your expectations, but great review(:

  4. Hey Shaylene! Aw thank you so much :) I'm glad to here you enjoyed the book! My friend read it and loved it, so I have a feeling I might pick it up again in a year or so.

    Thanks Eleni! I hope you enjoy it! :)

    Thanks Lisa! :)

  5. The title and cover caught my eye immediately, too. Sorry you didn't like it so much, but thanks for the honest review, Katie. It doesn't really sound like my kind of book, either.

  6. I was disappointed with this too. Found the story to be completely unrealistic and odd - I was cringing half the time I was reading it. Thanks for the honest review - I'm glad I'm not the only one that didn't like this book :).

  7. I loved this book, just like Shaylene said, but I do know some others haven't liked it either! Great review!