Boys Like You by Juliana Stone, to be published 6th May 2014 by SOURCEBOOKS Fire.
Read: April 2014
Genre: Young Adult/Contemporary/Romance
Source: Publisher – this does not affect my opinion of the book.
For Monroe Blackwell, one small mistake has torn her family apart leaving her empty and broken. There’s a hole in her heart that nothing can fill. That no one can fill. And a summer in Louisiana with her grandma isn’t going to change that…
Nathan Everets knows heartache firsthand when a car accident leaves his best friend in a coma. And it’s all his fault. He should be the one lying in the hospital. The one who will never play guitar again. He doesn’t deserve forgiveness, and a court-appointed job at the Blackwell B&B isn’t going to change that…
I have literally just finished this book and I had to write this review instantly! I LOVE this book, I can’t wait for it to be published because I NEED a physical copy for my bookshelf – that’s how good it was. I think this may just have to be my first 5/5 rating since starting this blog!
I just loved this book, LOVED IT. The storytelling is fast paced and Monroe’s background story keeps you guessing for quite a while over the identity of the mysterious Malcolm. Grams is a great character, insightful and a Southern force to be reckoned with. For anyone who has dealt with some serious issues in their lives I think you will really connect with this, it can be heartbreaking and emotional, but hopeful too, and it just generates all the feels. I could feel the characters’ pain and when the romance started to develop… I have a massive book-crush on Nate. There, I said it. I have to put it out there. I love this guy.
This is a captivating and intense read from start to finish. I don’t feel this is really an insta-love, sure it happens pretty quickly, but it’s so much deeper than the superficial instant love affairs that happen so often in YA – Monroe (how amazing is that name?!) and Nate scream depth and maturity, and I was literally cheering these guys on.
I love the writing style of this book, it is honest and thought-provoking and more than that there are parts of it that are just beautifully written. The character development of Monroe and Nate, and watching them open up to each other, it’s just stunning to read, and it obviously helps that I’m a great big old romantic and I just wanted to thump these two on the shoulder and go, “Aww, you guuyss!!”. This is definitely comparable with John Green, it’s up there with the best.
On a more serious note, the dialogue between Trevor’s mum, dad, Nate and Monroe can be heart-wrenching, at one point I was nearly in tears when Trevor’s dad and Monroe were having a deep and meaningful. The events that led to Monroe and Nate meeting are devastating, and very real, and the lasting impact on their lives can clearly be seen, and in the midst of it all this beautiful relationship develops.
I loved the setting of this novel, Monroe is from New York and has a sassy and sarcastic attitude that I really got, but the main development of the story happens in New Orleans. The music nights at the Coffee House, the bush parties – all of it – I just couldn’t help but thinking that I wouldn’t mind an invite! The only slight downside I felt about this novel was how “perfect” the characters and their friends all were, everyone seemed to be pretty, stunning, gorgeous etc. and the guys all had a Southern charm that seemed to affect the entire female population, at times it felt a little over-kill, but it wasn’t enough to put me off this book at all.
“That was before I learned my charmed life could bleed. That pain could become an everyday kind of thing, and that the thought of happiness was just a word that didn’t mean anything.”
“There are things in this world that will never surprise you. Things that are absolute. The sun rises each morning and sets in the evening. No surprise there. The four seasons fall, one after another. Again, no surprise. I’ve learned in my sixteen and a half years that there are things that will surprise you because you don’t see them coming. They can be hard, painful things, and it’s those ones that will live with you forever, bound to your soul in layers that grow thicker each year. Hopefully those layers will eventually dull the pain. There can also be awesome surprises. Again, ones you don’t see coming, but when they find you, you wonder how you ever lived without them.”
I’m actually so excited to have discovered a 5/5 read! I have never felt the serious need to own a hard-copy version of a book I have read for review, but I have to get my hands on this. This book may not have the same impact on everyone that it has had on me, but for some reason I just clicked with it. I can’t recommend this novel enough, I think you will like it if you are in to “issues” books, as that is an obvious theme, but also if you’re into swooning, this is pretty swoon-worthy and just the right amount of YA erotic/soppy to make your heart race and melt at the same time.