Two years ago, I read and reviewed Tiffany Scandal’s debut There is No Happy Ending and thoroughly enjoyed it. I’ve been waiting to see what she cooked up next and she delivered her second book in the form of Jigsaw Youth released by Ladybox Books.
Artists and creative types usually fear the dreaded sophomore slump, but this concept must have never came across Scandal’s mind because this book shows her range and how much she has grown since her last book.
The main thing I noticed is the difference in tone and style. Scandal’s moves away from bizarro and grounds us in the real world from the get go.
The novel focuses on our punk rock lesbian protagonist Ella and is told through short yet impactful vignettes. We follow her on the emotional journey on the road with her band, learning how to navigate tough relationships with lovers and homophobic muthafuckas.
Scandal’s prose is crisp, sharp and poetic at times. The dialogue in the book never feels forced and is smooth and realistic. I felt like I could really relate to this characters and genuinely cared about their lives and welfare. This is a testament to Scandal’s diverse skillset.
I could probably harp on and on about how great this book is. Just know that I read this within two days and a chill ran down my spine after reading the last page.
Jigsaw Youth is a punk rock book through and through. It’s powerful, the characters feel sincere, and when you close the book, you’ll be left wanting more.