First Published: October, 2013
Source: Book Con 2016
Hey everyone! It seems like a miracle, but I’ve totally been on track with my posts all week! Have you noticed?
Today I’m reviewing a book I received a free copy of at Book Con a few weeks ago.
Chloe dozed off during study hall one day, but when she woke up she was in the same room but 6 months had gone by. She can’t remember anything that transpired during those months, but she quickly finds out that her best friend refuses to speak to her, she’s dating the most popular guy in school, and possibly has a fling with the least popular, not to mention criminal, guy in school. Will she be able to put the pieces together? Is there something much more sinister going on than some anxiety and a few panic attacks? Will she ever get her memories back?
Click HERE for book’s Goodreads Page
Where to start? Where to start? I guess I’ll start with something I didn’t really like about this book. There are quite a few inconsistencies. Not just in the the story, but also in the characters and the writing.
I really liked the first half of this book, but was bored by the second half. Richards employs the basic tactics to keep the reader guessing and that worked for the first half of the book. It really kept the pace alive and kept me flipping pages. However, once she got to the second half, I really just wanted some answers, and I didn’t have a single one. Instead, I was bogged down with more questions and confusion. The storytelling would have worked better if the reader was at least given tidbits of information to satiate their need to know but also keep open the questions to keep them reading.
I also found inconsistencies in the characters, especially Chloe. I LOVED Chloe in the first half of the book. She had a witty, not-taking-crap-from-anyone, proud-of-who-she-is attitude, and that was wonderful. Plus, I loved her sarcasm and her inner voice (as the book is narrated from her POV). I even found myself laughing out loud a few times. Then, the second half of the book happened, and she became a bit too soppy and romance focused and very unlike the original Chloe we were introduced to. I wish she would have stayed consistent throughout.
Speaking of romance, this book has quite a bit of it. Don’t get me wrong, I totally got and understood the romance, I just wanted a little bit less of it. And maybe a bit less of how soppy it was. For me, the scenes that focussed on the romance were boring, drawn-out, and had me feeling uninterested. Overall, it didn’t add much to the plot, and I wish there would have been less. I do not wish there hadn’t been any. As I said, I get it and half enjoyed it, but it was just a little too much and slowed the pace.
Another issue with the characters that I had was that there wasn’t much depth. I wish Richards would have invested more time in their dimensions rather than what she invested in the romance. This, in my opinion, would have made the story much stronger. The only character I felt a connection with was Chloe, and even that didn’t run very deep. They weren’t completely flat, but I wanted much more.
I felt the same sort of way about the plot. It was alright and (mostly) kept me interested, but it needed more. It’s like Richards was so close with her characters and storyline but couldn’t quite get everyone/thing to home plate. I also thought that too much of the story was far-fetched. This occasionally ended up pulling me momentarily out of the story. I never forgot that I was reading fiction and that was a little disappointing.
Still, even if I was a bit disappointed with what was driving the story, the writing was decent. Nothing spectacular, but Richards got a few chuckles out of me and didn’t have me irked with the way she wrote the story. There were a few minor spelling and grammar mistakes that I felt could have been easily fixed and should have been noticed by an editor, but it was nothing that drove me up the wall. I did like her ability to end every chapter with a decent cliffhanger.
One final thing that caused me to not to be too impressed by this story was that it was pretty predictable and I saw just about everything coming. There were no big twists or turns that had me on the edge of my seat. A few people even died, and I felt pretty indifferent about that.
The last thing I want to touch on is how mental illness was used: Basically, not very well. I didn’t really like how uninformed it all sounded and how it was used to further the plot. I also didn’t like Chloe’s anxiety because I didn’t think it was accurately portrayed and was only used when convenient for the plot. That irked me a bit. However, I did like Maggie’s stutter. I thought that was incorporated well and one of the few consistencies of the story.
Overall, do I recommend this book? Ehhhhh. I guess if you’re looking for a light read that kind of keeps you on the edge of your seat, maybe give it a try. Otherwise, you’d be safe skipping this one.
I nearly gave this book 2.5 stars instead of 3, but there were some parts I really did like, but the parts I didn’t like pretty much equaled the good parts.
If you are curious, you can order a copy from Book Depository here for $9.99.
Up Tomorrow: Review of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine: The Heart of the Warrior