Matt Wainright has lived in the same cul-de-sac as long as he can remember. His best friend, Tabby, has always lived just across the street. They’re inseparable, and Matt can’t imagine anything ever changing. Except his feelings for Tabby. Matt never saw that coming, and he has no idea how to tell her, but he will. Probably. Until a senior basketball star falls for Tabby, and suddenly everything changes.
Now his best friend is always too busy, and instead of shining on the JV basketball court, Matt finds himself fumbling. Even his younger brother is driving him crazy. Only his favorite class, creative writing, seems to make any sense. Then a tragedy occurs, and Matt can’t make sense of anything, as his life spins out of control and he teeters on the edge of self-destruction.
I was not prepared for this book. At all. I loved Matt’s voice from the very beginning. (With that movie-director voice in his head, of course he’s going to be a writer.) He has grand visions of himself, but his follow-through doesn’t always live up to his hype. This book captures the hope and the confusion of high school, as well as the gobsmacked feeling of first love. I laughed, I hoped, and I cried, right along with Matt. You MUST read this! I’m looking forward to seeing what Jared Reck writes next.
Edie’s just your normal, everyday, shy, overweight teenager picking up snacks for a late-night movie marathon with her best friend, when a man with a gun takes her hostage at the gas station. In an instant, Edie’s life changes and everything takes a sharp left turn. Edie and John are the only ones left standing. In the publicity hype that follows, Edie walks away from her best friend and fights back against the girl who’s been bullying her for years. Shy, quiet Edie chucks her private school career to go to public school, where she hopes she’ll fit in better.
Of course, the hype follows her to her new school, but this time it’s because of her connection to John, school bad boy and now-former weed dealer. Edie makes new friends, but finds it hard to open up. With no one else who understands, Edie and John are drawn together and become friends, bonding over that fateful night. Soon Edie finds herself wanting more than friendship with John, but someone like him could never be interested in her.
I loved this book! Read it straight through in one sitting. Edie is a kick-butt heroine. Smart-mouthed and droll, she stands up for what she believes in, no matter what, and her wry observations frequently had me laughing. Her friendship with Han was fantastic, with none of the petty jealousies and insecurities I’ve come to expect in YA. John is beyond fantastic. The way his character grows in this story is enthralling, and seeing him evolve as he and Edie grew to trust each other showcased just how much people can change. Tons of witty banter, joking, and hijinks here, but there’s a serious side to this novel, too. I give this 5+ stars!
Kylie Scott is a NYT and USA Today best-selling author. She lives and writes in Australia. Her newest novel is Trust.
(Galley provided by author via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.)
I hope everyone has a Happy Valentine’s Day, whether you have a Valentine or not. Love yourself. Eat chocolate. Be happy. Love is important, and loving yourself is near the top of the list.
Write something you love today, no matter how simple. Try out something you’ve been meaning to write. A limerick? Haiku? Adventure short story? Cheesy high school romance? If you love it, write it. Worry about the details later.