By Tom Ellen & Lucy Ivison
(Can also be found on my Goodreads)
I'm a sucker for YA contemporaries.
Sometimes all I want to read are stories with relatable and quirky awkward characters.
This is one of those. And I loved it
It also happens to be a very unexpected gem of a book. I bought it on a whim, which is something I just can't help myself doing, this time it paid off.
It was the tagline that really sold it for me, making me want to read it as soon as I got my hands on it:
"A socially awkward love story"
I did have some kind of hope that I was in for something good when I saw this. Just made it seem like the perfect read for me. And it certainly didn't disappoint.
Sam and Hannah are two awkward teenage virgins that can't seem to get love right. They are desperate to make the last summer before leaving for uni special, on a hunt for 'the one'. Embarrassing and just down-right comical events follow, I found myself laughing out loud quite a few times when reading this.
"'Still, there's nothing better feeling than sorting your tax out and then kicking back with a bit of Pink Floyd. Am I right?'"
I keep using the word 'awkward' to describe every aspect of this book...
...but it's all awkward in such a good way.
The characters themselves were all so loveable. I enjoyed reading from both Sam and Hannah's point of view. I think it would have been a lot less interesting if we only got to see the story unfold from just the one perspective. It was so cute to see them think such similar things and have mini conflicts with themselves, which I think every teenager would feel in the same situation, making them so much more realistic.
The secondary characters were also full of life. Each had their own quirky mannerisms but each shared common interests that made their friendships more believable. Stella was a character that, despite her flaws, grew on me because of her loyalty towards her friends. I think that deep down she's just a big softie that would put her friends before anything else.
"Something in my voice stopped Stella in her tracks. She nodded and held my hand and we left."
I find books like this so easy and fun to read because of how light-hearted and cute it was. It doesn't deal with many serious matters, the characters face problems such as losing their virginity and having the same dress as their friends. Little things that almost everyone deals with and may seem big and important at the time, but are only small when looked back on.
But that's what makes it so enjoyable to read about for me
It's so relatable and innocent. Makes me reminisce about my own experiences with growing up, from the fun times with friends, to stressful times with education. And being set in the UK was great because it's actually rare to find books about teenagers going to University as opposed to an American College. I need more books like this in my life.
It's quickly turning into one of those books I just can't stop thinking about. I need something similar to fill in the void that this book left...
I just.. can't.
IT WAS SO GOOD
*The copy I read was an uncorrected proof copy from 2014*