Save the Date by Morgan Matson Review

book review

Do I think this will be one of my favorite contemporaries of the year? I do!

In Morgan Matson’s latest YA contemporary Save the Date, a college-bound teenage girl prepares for her older sister’s wedding. Even though the disaster after disaster is thrown her way, she couldn’t be more excited to reunite with her siblings again, especially since the weekly comic depicting her family’s life is coming to a close.

I definitely had high expectations, but some reservations coming into Save the Date. I love Morgan Matson’s books and really enjoyed her last release, The Unexpected Everything. However, I was hearing mixed reviews for Save the Date which made me unsure of how I would enjoy it. While this book wasn’t quite what I expected, I overall enjoyed the story and its message.

One of the strongest aspects of this book is its focus on family. Charlie and her siblings were extremely close growing up and now with Charlie moving onto college and her parents selling their childhood home, it seems like everyone is on a different page. Additionally, there has been a major fallout with one of the siblings at the beginning of this book which threatens to ruin the wedding. I really liked how Matson explored how families change when children grow older and how Charlie might have projected her ideas of the perfect family onto her own.

Another aspect that I really enjoyed was the character growth in Charlie. Like with her family, Charlie often projects what she wants people to be over who they truly are or idolizes people who maybe shouldn’t be idolized. This book is truly a coming of age story where Charlie sheds those perceptions to look at the world more realistically. I think a lot of people who are graduating high school and moving on from childhood crushes and older sibling will really relate to her story.

On the other hand, there were a few aspects of this book that I think will throw off some readers. Based on Matson’s past two releases and the blurb on this book, I expected the romance to be a little more emphasized in this book than it panned out. However, this book truly focuses on family and any mention of a love interest in the book really only seems included to reinforce the theme. While the lack of romance surprised me in this book, I still really enjoyed other aspects of this book. However, I can understand why some readers may feel misled by the book’s synopsis.

Another part of this book that may irritate some readers is the structure and some plot points in the book. This book only takes place over the weekend, so it includes a lot of minute-by-minute details that may disinterest some readers. Like with The Unexpected Everything, some readers may feel some scenes could have been edited out. While I didn’t necessarily have a problem with this in The Unexpected Everything, I did find myself glossing over a few details and skipping the bonus scenes at the end of the book. Additionally, some aspects of this plot resemble frequently used wedding mishaps from movies which some readers may find unoriginal and overdone.

While there were some downsides to Save the Date and I wouldn’t consider it my favorite Matson book, it was an overall enjoyable read. I think if you go in under the impression that it is more focused on family than friendships or romances like Matson’s two releases before this book that this book will be more enjoyable. I give Save the Date four out of five stars.

Since You’ve Been Gone Review

blogsgiving

I’m thankful for books that features great friends… like the ones in this book!

In Since You’ve Been Gone by Morgan Matson, Emily Hughes expects to spend a summer of fun with her best friend, Sloane. One day, Sloane disappears but leaves behind a list of tasks for Emily to complete over the summer. Soon, Emily’s summer is turned upside down when Frank Porter, junior class president and notorious “good guy,” promises to help her complete the list.

I’ve read three Morgan Matson books (Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour, The Unexpected Everything, and Since You’ve Been Gone) and this book is my favorite out of the three. When I went into this book, I didn’t have extremely high expectations since I read many similar books in the past. However, I really connected to the characters within this book and think it is the perfect summer read.

I think the biggest reason that I love this book is the main character. Emily is very shy and often hides one step behind her friends so she doesn’t have to navigate any potentially awkward or uncomfortable situations on her own. While this sounds like many other main characters in young adult novels, I think Morgan Matson does a great job of adding more complexity to Emily’s character. Emily isn’t a stereotypical, “good girl” Mary Sue character. Throughout the novel, Emily learns more about herself and who is she outside of Sloane’s shadow. Additionally, Emily makes a lot of questionable decision and she faces the consequences for all of her actions. Overall, Emily is a really relatable and authentic main character for the story.

Another well-developed aspect of this book around the side characters. On the surface, many of the side characters have the potential to fall into tropes, but they don’t. Even though Frank is the “nice guy” and Collins is the wanna-be “ladies’ man,” readers also see more quirks in their personalities and the emotions that drive their decisions. I especially liked Dawn who did not fall into many traps of the main character’s sidekick. When Emily did something that conflicted with Dawn’s beliefs, Dawn stuck to her opinions instead of supporting Emily’s actions.

I also really enjoyed the to-do list aspect of this book. For me, books with to-do lists can really be hit-or-miss. However, I liked how Morgan Matson built a backstory so that the list and all of the bullet points on it, not only made sense, but reflected Emily’s relationship with Sloane. While readers see Emily and Sloane’s friendship primarily through flashbacks, I really had a good idea of their friendship and how much it meant to both of them. I think the author created a great resolution to their story line and I was very satisfied with how this book ended.

While Since You’ve Been Gone is on the longer side for a contemporary, I breezed through this book for its fun story line and easy writing style. I recommend this book to anyone looking for a fun summer book or anyone who likes books with well-developed characters and friendships. I give Since You’ve Been Gone four out of five stars.

The Brittany Awards Part Four: My Favorite Overall Books of 2016

the-brittany-awards

Throughout the month of December, I am awarding my favorite books that I read throughout 2016. There are four categories (picture books, middle grade books, young adult books, and overall favorite books) with 5 winners and 3 honorable mentions in each category. Over the last three weeks, I chose my top five favorite picture books, middle grade books, and young adult books (see the winners here, here, and here). This week, I will choose the winners for my top overall books that I read in 2016.

For each winner, I will include a link to the review, my rating, and an excerpt from the review (if there is a review of the book on my blog). Here are my choices for favorite overall books of 2016, in no particular order:

1.) The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer (★ ★ ★ ★ -★ ★ ★ ★ ★, depending on the book)

Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles, #1)

I haven’t read Winter yet, but I loved the first three books in this series–I finished the first three within a week!

2.) The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski (★ ★ ★ ★)

The Winner's Curse (The Winner's Trilogy, #1)

“I enjoyed the characters and romance in this book, but wanted more dimension in the side characters and better pacing at the end of the novel…”

3.) The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson (★ ★ ★ ★ ★)

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“Even though this book was over 500 pages, which isn’t typical of a contemporary, I never lost interest and got interested in the story right away. I couldn’t put this book down!”

4.) Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan (★ ★ ★ ★ ★)

The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #1)

“Percy may be a Half Blood, but the book about him is full of action, humor, and heart.”

5.) Since You’ve Been Gone by Morgan Matson (★ ★ ★ ★)

Since You've Been Gone

I read this book towards the beginning of summer and it was the perfect way to kick of my summer reading! I really connected to the main character and loved the story.

6.) Allie Finkle’s Rules for Girls: Moving Day by Meg Cabot (★ ★ ★ ★ ★)

Moving Day (Allie Finkle's Rules for Girls, #1)

“I absolutely LOVED this book. Allie Finkle was a hilarious protagonist with sass and spunk.”

 

Honorable mentions:

1.) Jessica Darling’s It List: The Totally Not Guaranteed Guide to Popularity, Prettiness, and Perfection by Megan McCafferty (★ ★ ★ ★ ★)

Jessica Darling's It List: The (Totally Not) Guaranteed Guide to Popularity, Prettiness & Perfection

“Megan McCafferty did the perfect job of capturing the middle school voice and creating characters and situations that are extremely relatable. I think this book is hilarious, but also provides meaningful advice to the book’s target audience.”

2.) Rebel Belle by Rachel Hawkins (★ ★ ★ ★)

Rebel Belle (Rebel Belle, #1)

“Even though Rebel Belle wasn’t the most ground shaking book that I’ve ever read, it was extremely fun and enjoyable to read.”

3.) Wonder by R.J. Palacio (★ ★ ★ ★ ★)

Wonder

“Wonder by R.J. Palacio is an inspirational middle-grade novel with well-developed and authentic characters…”

 

What were your overall favorite books this year?

Thrift Store Book Haul #7

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Amidst dashing around to stores Christmas shopping, I managed to sneak in a few trips to my favorite local thrift stores to find some deals on books that you just can’t find in stores. I picked up some great books for my future classroom as well as a few books for myself that are definitely out of my comfort zone. Here’s what I found:

  • Who is Jane Goodall? by Roberta Edwards

This is a great non-fiction books for my future students! Jane Goodall and how she works with animals is very popular among young readers!

  • Magic Tree House Fact Tracker: Dog Heroes by Mary Pope Osbourne and Natalie Pope Boyce
  • Magic Tree House Fact Tracker: Abraham Lincoln by Mary Pope Osbourne and Natalie Pope Boyce

I love the non-fiction companions to Magic Tree House books! These are also great non-fiction books for my future classroom library.

  • Rumor Has It by Jane B. Mason and Sarah Hines Stephens

I LOVED the books printed under Candy Apple Books (see my rank some of my favorites here) and I am happy that I found a new one to add to my collection!

  • There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly! by Lucille Colandro

I couldn’t remember if I already had this book or not, but for such a cheap price, I thought I would take the chance of having two copies!

  • Kate the Great, Except When She’s Not by Suzy Becker

This book looks like it would appeal to readers of Diary of Wimpy Kid or Dork Diaries, so I had to pick it up!

  • Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes
  • Rebel Spring by Morgan Rhodes

The Falling Kingdoms series is definitely something that I normally wouldn’t pick up, but the copies were in such great condition for such a cheap price that I thought I would take a risk on them!

  • A View from Saturday by E.L. Konigsburg 

I’ve heard of this book before, but am not 100% sure of what it is about–I guess I’ll find out when I read it!

  • The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson

I ran out and purchased The Unexpected Everything this summer (check out my review here) and loved it! When I found a brand new copy at a local thrift store, my jaw dropped! Since it is in such nice condition, I might give it to a friend or save it for a giveaway (if I do one in the future).

  • Half Moon Investigations by Eoin Colfer

I saw that this book was written by the author of Artemis Fowl. I’ve never read that series, but know it was pretty popular, so I picked this up since copy I found was in perfect condition. 

 

What good deals have you gotten on books recently?

The Dog Breed Book Tag

blogsgiving

One of the things that I’m most thankful for would have to be my dog, Bolt. I thought doing the Dog Breed Book Tag created by Maggie at MassachusettsNovel. Here are my answers:

  • Golden Retriever: The Family Dog, a book character you would bring home to meet your family

Lola and the Boy Next Door (Anna and the French Kiss, #2)

I would definitely bring Cricket to meet my family! He’s nice, kind, and would be loved by anyone’s parents!

  • Pitbull: The Misunderstood, name a character you misjudged when first meeting

Auggie & Me: Three Wonder Stories

He’s no where near my favorite character, but I like how we got to understand Julian better in Auggie and Me. He definitely redeems himself at the end of his story in Auggie and Me.

  • Dalmatian: A book cover that is aesthetically pleasing to you

The Fault in Our Stars

The Fault in Our Stars has become such an iconic cover and I think one of the reasons is that it is so aesthetically pleasing! I love the graphic quality and colors.

  • Lab: The Lovable, a book you think almost anyone can love

Just Listen

Just Listen is wonderfully written and incredibly deep. No matter how many books I read, this always ranks as one of my favorites.

  • Mutt: A book with a little bit of everything in it

The Hunger Games (The Hunger Games, #1)

The Hunger Games has action, romance, humor, and politics. It appeals to so many audiences, which is probably why it was so successful!

  • Dachshund: A long book that’s worth the read

The Unexpected Everything

The Unexpected Everything is pretty long for a contemporary book, but it’s definitely worth the time! Also, it features a lot of cute dogs.

  • Samoyed: A book you love that is full of fluff

The Princess Diaries (The Princess Diaries, #1)

Meg Cabot is the queen of fluff! My favorite series by Meg Cabot would have to be The Princess Diaries. Everyone can relate to Princess Mia!

  • Border Collie: A book that is a high energy read

Allegiant (Divergent, #3)

The Divergent series is very high energy (especially the Dauntless) and always keeps you on your toes! Even though Allegiant slightly disappointed me, I remember flying through these books.

  • Chinese Crested: A book that looks good naked

My Lady Jane

Without the jacket, My Lady Jane is pretty plain. However, I love the small horse detail on a royal purple background because it really ties in the story.

  • Your favorite literary pooch

Zora and the Greyhounds

Zora from Zora and the Greyhounds is adorable! Her determination and hard work is very admirable.

  • Your favorite dog(s)

My dog, Bolt, and my grandma’s dog, Molly are definitely my favorite dogs!

 

Election Day Reads

election-day-reads

Today, the United States elects a new President of the United States. Regardless of your political party or choice for president, we can all agree that there are some great books that celebrate our country! Here are three of my book choices for election day that either include some patriotic or political element (reviews will be linked the book title):

Judy Moody Declares Independence (Judy Moody #6)

Judy Moody Declares Independence is one of my favorite Judy Moody books. Not only does Judy Moody learn some important American history, but she also matures a lot throughout this book! My favorite part of this book was learning about a female American hero seldom mentioned in history textbooks.

The Unexpected Everything

In The Unexpected Everything, Andie’s father is a politician under investigation for a scandal. Andie’s world turns upside down when her prized internship is stripped away and she must rebuild her relationship with her father over the summer.

  • All-American Girl by Meg Cabot

All-American Girl (All-American Girl, #1)

All-American Girl is a hilarious read perfect for Election Day. In All-American Girl, Samantha’s parents force her to attend art classes after trouble at school. When she skips class, she ends up saving the president’s life, becoming a national hero, and falling for the president’s son.

End of Summer Reading Bucket List

buckets

In honor of the release of Judy Moody and the Bucket List, I thought I would create my own bucket list for all the books I want to read before heading back to college! If you would like to see my review of Judy Moody and the Bucket List, click here.

In the next four weeks, I hope to read…

The Lipstick Gospel: A Story about Finding God in Heartbreak, the Sistine Chapel, and the Perfect Cappuccino

The Lipstick Gospel by Stephanie May Wilson

At my college, I am the chaplain of my sorority. I want to use this book during one of the Bible studies this semester, so I need to read it before the semester begins.

The Sea of Monsters (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #2)

Percy Jackson and the Olympians #2: Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan

I LOVED The Lightning Thief, so I definitely want to read the rest of the books in the series. I have this book checked out of the library, so I need to read it before the return date!

The Mysterious Benedict Society (The Mysterious Benedict Society, #1)

The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart

I started this book awhile ago, but I got a little bored and haven’t picked it up since. I do really want to read this book and since it is longer, I need to read it before school starts!

Winter (The Lunar Chronicles, #4)

Winter by Marissa Meyer

I started The Lunar Chronicles this summer and absolutely love the series! I would love to finish before school starts, but since they don’t have this book in my local library and I want to wait for the hardcover set to be released before I purchase the books, I might have to wait on this one!

Second Chance Summer

Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson

I have loved every Morgan Matson book that I read this summer, so I definitely want to read this one before summer ends.

The Moon and More

Any Sarah Dessen Book

I love Sarah Dessen’s books and usually reread them multiple times throughout the summer. Between work, studying for my certification tests, and discovering new books, I haven’t read ANY! This needs to change before the summer ends.

Tales from a Not-So-Fabulous Life (Dork Diaries, #1)

Dork Diaries #1: Tales from a Not-So-Fabulous Life by Rachel Renee Russell

I’ve hauled a lot of these books this summer and I have wanted to read them for a long time. These would be the perfect books to read right before going back to school!

Isabel: Taking Wing (Girls of Many Lands, England)

Isabel: Taking Wing (Girls of Many Lands) by Annie Dalton

I remember reading the Girls of Many Lands series whenever I was younger and loved them. I never read this one though and it’s been on my mind to read.

What books do you hope to read before the summer ends?

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I’d Buy Right Now if I had a Fully Loaded Gift Card

top ten

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s theme is ten books that I’d buy right now if I had a fully loaded gift card. Here’s my list:

1.) The Lunar Chronicles Hardcover Box Set by Marissa Meyer

Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles, #1)

really want to read Winter, but it isn’t in my public library. I want to buy all of the books in this series, but I’d rather wait to get the box set! I definitely wish I had a gift card to buy it though–right now you can pre-order the box for around $62, even though the box has a value of $100!

2.) Love and Gelato by Jenna Evans Welch

Love & Gelato

This book looks so cute, but since this book just released this summer, it is still only in hardback. I’ve bought so many books this summer that I can’t justify buying another hardcover book at full price.

3.) A Kindle Paperwhite

This technically isn’t a book, but lately I’ve really been wanting a Kindle. Right now, I have to read all my eARCs on my phone, which isn’t terrible, but I’d also like to start buying more ebooks since I don’t have enough space at college for any physical copies. Also, my mom keeps telling me that if I buy any more books, then they’ll have to go in the garage because my bookshelf and boxes that I keep my books in are overflowing!

4.) Miss Mayhem and Lady Renegades by Rachel Hawthorne

Miss Mayhem (Rebel Belle, #2)

I love the Rebel Belle series, but like with The Lunar Chronicles, my library doesn’t have the last book in the series! Since I love this series so much and want to finish it, I’d definitely buy these books with a gift card.

5.) The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein

The Giving Tree

The Giving Tree is one of my favorite children’s books, but I can’t justify buying it since it’s almost twenty dollars in all of the stores around me! I’ll either wait to get this book until I find it in a thrift store or have a gift card.

6.) Since You’ve Been Gone by Morgan Matson

Since You've Been Gone

I absolutely love this book and want to add it to my collection, but since I’ve been limiting myself on buying books at full price, I’ve never bought this one. If I get a gift card for my birthday or Christmas, then I’ll definitely purchase this one.

7.) The Diary of a Wimpy Kid series by Jeff Kinney

Diary of a Wimpy Kid (Diary of a Wimpy Kid, #1)

I only have one Diary of a Wimpy Kid book, but I think it would be a great series to have in my classroom. It’s hard to find these books in good condition at thrift stores, and when I do, I usually can only find books later in the series.

8.) Kasie West books

On the Fence

I’ve been hearing a lot of positive things about Kasie West books, but I’ve never read one. They seem like books that I would enjoy, so I definitely want to pick up some in the near future.

9.)Jessica Darling’s It List series by Megan McCafferty

Jessica Darling's It List 2: The (Totally Not) Guaranteed Guide to Friends, Foes & Faux Friends

I have the first book in this series and I LOVED it (see my review here). If I had a gift card, I would love to get the rest of the series!

10.) Hundred Oaks series by Miranda Kenneally

Catching Jordan

I’ve always wanted to read these books, but they aren’t in my library and I don’t want to get hooked and feel the need to buy them all (even though it isn’t necessary to read all of them). If I had a gift card, I would probably purchase a few of them because they sound like books that I would enjoy.

 

What book would you buy with a fully loaded gift card?

Mid-Year Book Freak Out Tag

tag

Even though we’re already halfway through the year, I thought I would do the Mid-Year Book Freak Out Tag. Here are my answers:

  1. Best Book You’ve Read so Far in 2016

The Unexpected Everything

I’ve read so many great books this year! I’m going to choose any book by Morgan Matson because every book I read this year by her has been spectacular. Click here for my review of The Unexpected Everything.

2. Best Sequel You’ve Read so Far in 2016

Judy Moody Declares Independence (Judy Moody #6)

Judy Moody Declares Independence by Megan McDonald was the Judy Moody book that I have been waiting to read! I thought Judy Moody showed a lot of growth in this book and it also had a great message for girls.

3. New Release You Haven’t Read Yet, but Want to

Stars Above (The Lunar Chronicles, #4.5)

I just started the Lunar Chronicles this year, so I have awhile until I’ll be able to read this one!

4. Most Anticipated Release for the Second Half of 2016

Something in Between

Something in Between by Melissa de la Cruz sounds like it has all the pieces to make an amazing and heartfelt book. I can’t wait to read it!

5. Biggest Disappointment

Red Queen (Red Queen, #1)

I had really high expectations for Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard, but it didn’t live up to the hype for me. I felt like it was too similar to many other books already on the market and I never became invested in the story.

6. Biggest Surprise

Torn Away

When I checked out Torn Away by Jennifer Brown at my local library, I expected to forget about this book until I needed to return it. This book definitely exceeded my expectations and is one of the best books that I read this year! Click here for my review of Torn Away.

7. Favorite New Author

Jessica Darling's It List: The (Totally Not) Guaranteed Guide to Popularity, Prettiness & Perfection

Megan McCafferty isn’t a new author, but Jessica Darling’s It List is the first book that I read by her. Jessica Darling’s It List was hilarious and I can’t wait to pick up more of her books! Click here for my review of Jessica Darling’s It List.

8. Newest Fictional Crush

The Unexpected Everything

I loved Clark from The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson. She writes absolutely adorkable love interests, which are usually my favorites in YA books.

9. Newest Favorite Character

Moving Day (Allie Finkle's Rules for Girls, #1)

Allie Finkle in Alle Finkle’s Rules for Girls by Meg Cabot is smart and sassy. I am looking forward to reading the rest of the books in this series to see what crazy situations she ends up in. Click here for my review of Allie Finkle’s Rules for Girls.

10. Book that Made You Cry

Torn Away

I don’t usually cry when I read books, but one book that definitely made me sad was Torn Away. Not only does the main character lose absolutely everything, but she is forced to live with people who treat her like a piece of trash.

11. Book that Made You Happy

Rebel Belle (Rebel Belle, #1)

After reading a string of disappointing books, I picked up Rebel Belle by Rachel Hawkins and couldn’t put it down. Rebel Belle was fun to read, which I really needed after the few books I read before it.

12. Favorite Book to Movie Adaptation You Saw this Year

I haven’t seen any book to movie adaptations this year!

13. Favorite Review You’ve Written this Year

Red Queen (Red Queen, #1)

I think my favorite review that I read this year was Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard. I was in a review slump and that book definitely inspired me to write again, even though I didn’t enjoy the book that much. Another review that I love from this year would be my Let it Snow review because it is my first book review on my blog.

14. What Books do You Need to Read by the End of this Year

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There are so many books I want to read by the end of the year. To name a few, The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer, The Lipstick Gospel by Stephanie May Wilson, and Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson.

#TeenTuesday: The Unexpected Everything Review

unexpected

It’s wasn’t unexpected that this book was everything that I wanted in a summer read!

In The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson, Andie plans to spend her summer at a prestigious internship. After her father becomes embroiled in a political scandal, Andie’s plan quickly crumble. Instead, she finds herself walking dogs and breaking all of her rules when she meets Clark, a cute boy sitting one of the dogs she walks.

After reading Since You’ve Been Gone earlier this summer and seeing The Unexpected Everything everywhere, I knew I needed to pick it up! After a string of frustrating books, The Unexpected Everything offered everything that I wanted in a summer read. It was the perfect summer read that also contained depth, growth, and a lot of heart. Also, the cover is gorgeous and the story also has SO MANY DOGS.

Despite her unique circumstances as a politician’s daughter, Andie is likable and relatable to many different readers, especially girl’s her own age. Andie faces immense pressure to maintain her perfect image and seizes any opportunity to bolster her list of extracurricular activities. I really appreciated how her story emphasized that sometimes the best things in life are unplanned or unexpected.

The biggest stand outs of this book were Andie’s relationships with her love interest, father, and friends. As for the love interest, Clark, he was absolutely adorkable in typical Morgan Matson fashion. I love how his character related to a small detail in Since You’ve Been Gone and how excerpts from his books were used throughout the novel. I also really loved how Andie and Clark didn’t really click right away and that many of their initials interactions with quite awkward. Morgan Matson definitely has a way for creating authentic relationships.

Another part of the book that stood out was Andie’s relationship with her father. In the beginning, Andie and her father acts like complete strangers toward each other and they don’t know how to act around each other. I loved watching their relationship grow throughout the novel and how many of their decisions became influenced by their relationship.

Andie’s friends also added another dimension to the story. Every one of Andie’s friends were completely unique and stood out. Usually, emojis and texts in books kind of annoy me, but I think it really helped characterize Andie’s friends. Morgan Matson also accurately depicted friendship fall-outs. Some people may see it as extremely petty, but I remember seeing this same scenario play out several times while I was in high school. While I was slightly disappointed by how it played out, I still appreciated its authenticity.

Even though this book was over 500 pages, which isn’t typical of a contemporary, I never lost interest and got interested in the story right away. I couldn’t put this book down! I also really enjoyed the bonus scenes included in the back, which included a short bonus of Emily and Frank from Since You’ve Been Gone.

Since The Unexpected Everything was a fun summer read with strong character relationships, I give it five out of five stars.