First Lines: I can’t resist the water’s temptation after a sticky hour of tanning under the scorching sun. I slip into the empty pool and sink to its bottom. The water’s cool thrill rolls through my hair.
I was contacted by the author about reading this book. At the time, I was still on a Katie McGarry high, so I absolutely said yes. I was so in the mood for a realistic fiction romance between two unlikely leads.
Lucy is so looking forward to her summer of tanning, hanging out, parties, and dates with her gorgeous boyfriend. But when she lands herself in serious hot water with her parents, her summer changes for the worse. Lucy has to get a summer job. And this job happens to be painting houses with the most obnoxious boy in school, popular and egotistical Justin. He may be most other girls’ dream guy, but he’s so not Lucy’s. Gag. Justin’s cocky, annoying, and a complete jerk. So what if he’s good looking and he has a way of making Lucy forget her other problems? But maybe there’s more to Justin than Lucy realizes. It may not be the summer she wanted, but it may be the summer she needed.
Where should I begin with this? I guess I should say that I’ve been on this romance kick for a few weeks now. I just want a good love story.
And this delivered in spades. This book is about so much more than just the romance, though. It’s about finding out who your friends are. It’s about bullying. It’s about standing up for yourself. It’s about discovering who you are and what you want. I loved that it dealt with so many different aspects of life for teens. (I’m not a teenager anymore, and this was still incredibly applicable to me.) Some reviewers thought these topics weren’t fully explored because there were so many of them, but I didn’t think that was an issue. This book doesn’t set out to solve all of these problems, but merely show how they impact life.
I wasn’t sure at first that I was going to like this book. I didn’t really like Lucy. She wasn’t a role model by any means. But the more I got to know her, the more I understood why she was the way she was. Not even a third of the way through the book, I was crying when she did.
What I thought was most spectacular about this book was that it really felt like real life most of the time. I could relate to what Lucy and her friends were going through. In some cases, I’d BEEN through those. I definitely found a few places where it felt like Lucy overreacted to something or the action felt just a smidgen fake, but those were pretty rare. For the most part, I could pick any part in the book and be able to tell you about when that happened to me in high school.
I also found this story less predictable than other stories. Of course, there were parts that were predictable, but it didn’t play out exactly how I thought it would. Like real life, there were points that were full of surprises for the reader and for Lucy.
The writing was really amazing. I thought it was very descriptive not only with scenery and things like that, but with feelings and emotions. That’s why I was crying 1/3 of the way through the book. That does not happen every day.
Overall, I really enjoyed this book. I thought it was fairly amazing. And I’m absolutely not saying this because the author contacted me. I sincerely thought this was an amazing book.