How are you today? I’m sorry that I’ve been MIA for a wee while. I haven’t been in the mood to blog and I don’t want to force it because then it’s not enjoyable for me and it probably won’t be for you either. But I am back at it today with a review of a book that was kindly sent to me by Xpresso Book Tours – so thank you to them for sending me it.
Author: Shannon Klare
Published by: Swoon Reads
Publication date: August 14th 2018
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult
Seventeen-year-old Claire Collins has a plan: get into college and leave North Carolina behind. What she doesn’t have is an idea for how to get rid of the local football star and womanizer extraordinaire—Adam Meade, who she can’t even avoid (despite many efforts), because Claire’s dad is the high school football coach.
Seventeen-year-old Adam Meade never fails. He always gets what he wants… until he meets Claire, the new girl who leaves him unnerved, pissed off and confused. But there’s something about her that he just can’t resist…
With the bite of lemon meringue pie and the sugar of sweet tea, Surviving Adam Meade is a sexy and compelling young adult novel about two strong-willed people who think they know what they want but have no idea what they need.
By all accounts, this sounds like my normal dream read: cute romance, YA and witty/sarcastic protagonists. But something just didn’t grab me about this. It wasn’t bad. But it also wasn’t great. Everything felt very rushed, like massive chunks of time were missing and it wasn’t indicated clearly when they did a time jump. The basic premise of the plot I loved though! Because it was very real and authentic problems they dealt with, a major one being split by college choices which is a problem for many people and I liked that. Realism sells a book for me and this was one of the redeemable features of the book for me.
Another issue I had was with the climax of the book. There could be spoiler-esque things in this paragraph so just skip to the next section if you don’t want to be spoilt. Basically, stereotypical big fight over college and lies and all that teen drama stuff and then like a couple of time jump later and no talking between the two protagonists and they instantly make up and it’s like they both completely ignore that nothing about their situation has changed. I know for a fact that real life arguments do not resolve themselves that easily. Also, the whole climax of Seth (the ex) and his return was played out in literally 2 pages! A whole book’s worth of waiting for two pages. Seth was so adamant and determined and then all of a sudden, once Claire spoke to him, he just got over it and didn’t seem bothered anymore. Very bizarre and plot-forced and not because it actually flowed.
Writing Style: I liked her writing style. It was very accurate to a teenager, apart from the abbreviations that aren’t explained and you’re just meant to know and this might be because I’m British and it’s not a thing here but it was marginally confusing to follow at times and I had to search up the slang on occasion. But other than that it was very well written, a nice mix of teen-appropriate words and eloquent words to keep it interesting.
I loved the witty humour used and I found myself laughing on multiple occasions because it was so believable and just my humour to a T.
Characters/Relationships: Here is really where the book falls down for me. You didn’t get to know the characters very well at all. You found out all the plot-relevant stuff but nothing obscure to give them depth. It made them very two-dimensional and hard to sympathise with them or like them even.
I’ve decided I don’t like Claire. She annoyed me. I loved her humour and her quick wit but her decisions infuriated me. Why not tell Adam the truth? There is literally no reason to lie to him. Not one. And most of the time I am fine with letting book characters annoy me because usually, their bad decisions are written in for an overall moral reason or so they can overcome something. But Claire – not the case. She just made bad decisions for no reason and then complained when she mucked up, then waited for Adam to forgive and then let nothing change so that she is still mad about everything. SO ANNOYING.
Then there was Adam. Now, I like him more than I like Claire but he still annoyed me. He forgave her and instantly forgot all about his own opinion for no reason. Same as Seth! What is it with the males and forgetting what they want as soon as they see her? Also, the plot point of Adam’s parents seemed as if it was meant to be important and tear-jerking but because the characters were two-dimensional and had no depth then I didn’t care. I felt nothing for him when he told Claire this. But as I have already said, I did like the sarcastic conversations and the cute moments between Adam and Claire though.
All the other characters you barely got any information on them or any reason to get to know them or like them because again they were empty of character and substance. So they were all pretty blah.
The only two exceptions to this are Wanda and Case. These characters both had plot driving goals but they also had odd and unrelated goals that made you want them to succeed and want good things for them. I am going to read the second book in this series because of them. I want to know what happens to them and how their struggles end. Also because the next one seems to be told from Adam’s POV and I think I might enjoy that more.