After an awkward first encounter, Birdie and Daniel are forced to work together in a Seattle hotel where a famous author leads a mysterious and secluded life in this romantic contemporary novel from the author of Alex, Approximately.
Genre: YA Romance
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
Swoon Meter: ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
Birdie and Daniel are absolutely adorable and I enjoyed reading their story. Both characters developed throughout the story as well as side characters such as Aunt Mona and even Birdie’s grandfather. Although Birdie was extremely sheltered throughout her life, she is strong after having gone through so much loss.
Jenn Bennett does a good job at navigating the life of someone dealing with depression and living life after a suicide attempt. There were many moments in Daniel’s story that I identified with personally and I appreciate that the author wrote this perspective so delicately but in a raw and authentic way. From Daniel and Birdie’s individual journeys, I found many lessons on embracing the things that have made you who you are today but also living with hope for a better future.
Continuity of generational negligence was a theme in the book that I particularly enjoyed. Seeing Birdie take the brave step to break her familial cycle was inspiring but also very important. This wasn’t a fairytale ending: you knew that she is going to have to face troubles in managing her condition throughout the rest of her life. As someone that battles chronic illness, it is important to see this topic brought to life and normalized. The more I talk about my daily struggles with autoimmune diseases, the more common I find it actually is and the more I build my network of others that are going through similar struggles and I don’t feel so alone.
I think this novel was a sort of wake up call to me: Teen romance just doesn’t do it for me anymore. I’m officially old!
While the book was really good and had lots of swoon-worthy moments, I kept having these moments where I felt very strange being a grown adult and reading about teen romance. (Like an aunt not wanting to hear about her niece having sex or something, I don’t know??) That’s never happened before, so I guess my age is finally hitting me and I can’t enjoy teen romance as much as I used to. *heavy sigh*
Be that as it may, I did enjoy this book and I loved the realistic elements added that created depth and relatability within the characters.
Thanks to NetGalley and Simon and Schuster for this eARC in exchange for an honest review.