Movers & Fakers (Alphas #2), by Lisi Harrison
At the end of "Alphas," we find out that Shira Brazille knew that Allie A. was committing identity theft. I honestly thought that "Movers and Fakers" would lead off with Shira unmasking Allie A. as an imposter. But it doesn't. Oh, no. Allie A. has to become even closer friends with the other Jackie Os before that can happen.
Charlie is finally on the inventor track where she belongs. It is unclear how she got there, though. Perhaps Shira looked at the application that Charlie gave her in "Alphas" and changed her track accordingly. Perhaps she was put on the track because she is the first Alpha to get a patent (despite the fact that in real life the wait time for a patent is currently around two years), for nail polish that changes color with your mood. You lick your nails and chemicals in the polish react to the hormones in your saliva, which changes the color of the nail polish.
Meanwhile, Skye is having a crisis. She wants to be the best, but she cannot seem to catch up to Triple, no matter what she does. So she decides to focus on her second and third talents -- boys and partying. She is having trouble deciding between two of Shira's sons -- Taz and Sydney -- though. This may lead to problems later on.
Charlie shuts down the surveillance system so that Allie and Darwin, who are in the beginning stages of a flirtation, can have some time together unobserved. As she has agreed to spy on her fellow students, Charlie gets access to Shira's house using the excuse of having an Alpha to turn in. She gives Shira a made-up name, Ivy Lambert (based on the "Little lambs eat ivy" line of the song "Mairzy Doats"). It does not take long for Shira to catch on to the fact that the surveillance system is down, and so who does she call to fix it? Charlie, of course. Charlie intentionally takes a long time fixing it, so as to give Allie and Darwin more time, and also to allow Skye time to hold her parties.
In the meantime, Charlie looks up Jess, an old friend from Thailand, and discovers that he is now a hottie. Charlie starts fixating on Jess and she has fantasies of being in a relationship with Jess and the two of them being best friends with Allie and Darwin.
The real Allie J. finally arrives and she earns the enmity of all of the Jackie Os (with the exception of Triple, who has no time for things like that).
The book ends on a cliffhanger that has me really grateful that I own the next book in the series, "Belle of the Brawl," already.
This is probably an unpopular opinion, but from where I sit, I think that Triple should win the Alpha contest. She seems to be the only young woman in the entire school who is totally focused on improving herself. Everyone else is too caught up in romance and friendship drama (though, admittedly, the romance and friendship drama is what makes the books interesting). I think that the tales of Allie, Charlie, and Skye should end in a way that they land on their feet and are headed toward brilliant futures that they have made for themselves, rather than having it given to them by Shira Brazille.
In my mind, there should be a message in this series about the importance of making your own way in the world. The winner will, ultimately, be Shira's possession. I can totally see Shira having a "I made you, I can destroy you" attitude towards the winner, and I wouldn't like to see any of the protagonists end up in that position. I actually wouldn't like to see Triple in that position either, but someone has to win, and Triple definitely seems to have the desire to do so.
At the end of "Movers and Fakers", the body count is 21. 22, if you count the fictitious Ivy Lambert. Two books, and 79 more young women, to go.