I cannot believe it is March?!?!?! I only have 4 weeks before my exams and March is when the onset of stress really begins…AHHHHHH!!!
Anyway – I thought we would start off the new month with a Throwback Thursday themed post to one of the first books I ever loved (PS. I GO ON A BIT ON A TANGENT SO IF YOUR NOT INTERESTED JUST SKIP DOWN A BIT FOR THE VAGUE REVIEW, ALSO SORRY FOR THE HEFTY POST LENGTH)
If you are an avid reader you will probably know I didn’t really like reading much until a year or so ago when it hit me like an addiction but I digress… The Flynn Series by Sophie McKenzie was one of the only exceptions to this very strict no reading rule of mine.
I read this for the first time back in the October holidays of 2013….half a decade ago! Wow I feel old. I was away on a family caravaning trip and I had been at the Edinburgh Book Festival on a school trip the day before leaving, I had met Sophie McKenzie and she had signed the copy of Falling Fast that I had literally just bought (I STILL HAVE IT!! although it is deteriorating with each re-read, you can even see stains…yuck.) I started reading it one the first night away and it was completed by the following morning. I was so enraptured and consumed by the plot, characters and writing I made my parents take me round all the book shops hunting for the next two in the series. I spent the whole weekend reading and was devastated when it ended on a cliff hanger and I realised I had to wait until the January of the following year for the 4th and final instalment in the series to come out.
There are truly no words for how much this book impacted me as a 13 year old! I had never read anything in the young adult or contemporary genre before and I completely believe it is because of these books that it is the genre I say I gravitate towards most these days.
SO that’s my overly long preface to this review and all I want to add is ~ Thank you so much Sophie for inspiring a book hating 13 year old me – it may not have kept me reading but it has influenced me greatly not only in my book likes these days but my writing style too, so thanks 🙂
Title: Falling Fast (Flynn Series #1)
Author: Sophie McKenzie
Genre: Romance, Contemporary, Young Adult
Publication Date: March 2012
Summary: This is life, not a rehearsal…
When River auditions for a part in an inter-school performance of Romeo and Juliet, she finds herself smitten by Flynn, the boy playing Romeo. River believes in romantic love, and she can’t wait to experience it. But Flynn comes from a damaged family – is he even capable of giving River what she wants? The path of true love never did run smooth…
The blurb is a very good description of the general plot. This is so much more than a basic romance, the trials and tribulations make this stand out form the traditional contemporary YA book. I loved the plot of the school play because at the time I was really into acting and loved the idea of playing Juliet myself – I could really immerse myself into the story.
Writing Style: I love Sophie McKenzie’s writing style – it is very descriptive but just the right balance so that you don’t skip chunks of unnecessary wordiness. I actually loved it so much as at the time I first read it I definitely modelled my own writing on it – the stuff I write today is still written in a very similar way because I enjoy this style the most. I felt she represented young teenagers very well; not overly wordy or needy or characteristically “Teenagery” just adding to my appreciation because it was relatable.
Characters/Relationships: I loved River. She was an inspiration to me as a child because I felt I related so strongly with her – as a thirteen year old I had experienced romantic love but never like it seemed in the movies or Disney and I wanted that – just like she did. Everyone probably does at that age. Her nervousness and lack of self-confidence was also endearing. One downside was I thought her obsession with Juliet was a little strange…I just didn’t think it fit the rest of her nervous and quiet persona to be so obsessive and driven secretly. Maybe that’s just me though.
Example: At least I knew I had one of them.
One of them.
One of them wasn’t enough. I didn’t want to be a boring mother or a sensible nurse.
I had to be Juliet ~ Chapter 2, Page 16
I loved Flynn. He is incredible and his backstory was unlike anything I had read or watched before. Most main male characters I had experienced were portrayed as perfect and that was scary and unrelatable but Sophie McKenzie had written a male character that seemed to be a real human! I loved him and to see the pain and anger he was unable to escape made me hurt all that much more. I felt for these characters and this was refreshing for me!
Flynn is not just my favourite character in this series but probably my favourite character ever, out of all my books! ~ Sophie McKenzie in a Q&A
Flynn and River’s relationship was incredible! I loved both of them individually so when they combined into a brilliant romantic and painful couple I fell in love harder than they did, lol. It definitely had an air of insta-love but it worker because of the characters, setting and their ages.
I also loved the friends: Emmi and Grace and James. They were all very individulal and relatable and great and I have lost my writing ability – this book is nostalgic to me and it makes me so happy talking about it. If you want a spoiler review of the whole series where I just gush and rant I will because OMG I can’t even handle this series and the ending of the final book KILLED ME!!!!!! NO WORDS!!!
I CRIED THE MOST I HAVE EVER CRIED AT A BOOK EVER!
Here is the first chapter of the book in PDF format if you are interested in falling in love with them just like I did.
That’s all! I hope you liked this throwback!! I enjoyed doing it so much. I hope your March starts off with a bang! (In a good way)
Thanks and Happy Reading,