Review: The Fixer (The Fixer #1) by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

The Fixer (The Fixer #1) by Jennifer Lynn Barnes 
Publication date: Jul. 7,  2015
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children
Category: Young Adult - Contemporary/Mystery
Source: Received ARC from publisher (Thanks!)
Summary: Sixteen-year-old Tess Kendrick has spent her entire life on her grandfather's ranch. But when her estranged sister Ivy uproots her to D.C., Tess is thrown into a world that revolves around politics and power. She also starts at Hardwicke Academy, the D.C. school for the children of the rich and powerful, where she unwittingly becomes a fixer for the high school set, fixing teens’ problems the way her sister fixes their parents’ problems. And when a conspiracy surfaces that involves the family member of one of Tess's classmates, love triangles and unbelievable family secrets come to light and life gets even more interesting—and complicated—for Tess. (

The good
If Veronica Mars and Olivia Pope were sisters and their lives were a mix of Scandal and House of Cards, you’d get The Fixer. It's one hell of a page turner and I couldn’t put it down from the moment I picked it up. There were lots of twists and turns, some of which I happily was able to predict and others I didn't see coming at all. The author expertly weaves together different stories and characters into The Fixer, giving us just the right amount of answers but also leaving enough open questions to leave you wanting more. I honestly can't remember the last time I read a book that truly felt like there was mystery to be solved.

When we get introduced to Tess Kendrick, the author wastes no time in showing us exactly who she is. Smart and tenacious, hater of bullies and devoted to the people she loves, as evidenced by how she cares for her grandfather. I immediately wanted to know her better. The last thing Tess expects is to have her life completely uprooted by her older sister Ivy, who she hasn’t seen in years but seems to think she knows what’s best for her. And what’s best is moving Tess to DC to live with her. This gives Tess an opportunity to learn what exactly her sister Ivy has been up to all these years, as she grapples with her own feelings toward being reunited with her. She finds out that her sister is a fixer for the political elite — cleaning up their scandals, their drama and who knows what else. But clearly, this need to fix runs in the family because when Tess starts at Hardwicke Academy, the school for the children of said political elite, she gets roped into being their fixer.

Tess is quickly pulled into her sister’s world, whether she likes it or not, and as she makes friends at Hardwicke, she can’t ignore the conspiracies they’re involved in especially when her sister could be looking into the very same things. Tess is determined to get down to the bottom of things, along with her friends’ help, and I enjoyed every second of her sleuthing.

(No) Reservations
None! The book put its focus on the mystery, family and friendship and it was absolutely the right call. (I know it’s shocking. The girl who loves her romance is actually happy there wasn’t one here! But I do hope there's one in the next book.)

Do I recommend?
I do! It felt good to read a mystery, a genre I don’t typical gravitate towards in books, and I’ve already put The Fixer on my wishlist.


  1. The Fixer actually sounds like it could be a pretty fun read! I don't generally gravitate towards these types of stories, but I find myself intrigued by your review. Being a "fixer" sounds like a pretty cool yet pretty stressful position, and I think it'd be fun to read about a teen who is one!

  2. Great review! You hooked me by mentioning Olivia Pope, love her!

  3. I've read one of Jennifer Barnes' books before and I was not disappointed it was so so good! XD Can't wait to read this one :)


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