All the Little Lights
by Jamie McGuire
Expected publication: May 29th 2018 by Montlake Romance
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary Romance
In a Flutter: Interesting
The first time Elliott Youngblood spots Catherine Calhoun, he’s just a boy with a camera, and he’s never seen a sadder and more beautiful sight. Both Elliott and Catherine feel like outcasts, yet they find an easy friendship with each other. But when Catherine needs him most, Elliott is forced to leave town.
Elliott finally returns, but he and Catherine are now different people. He’s a star high school athlete, and she spends all her free time working at her mother’s mysterious bed-and-breakfast. Catherine hasn’t forgiven Elliott for abandoning her, but he’s determined to win back her friendship…and her heart.
Just when Catherine is ready to fully trust Elliott, he becomes the prime suspect in a local tragedy. Despite the town’s growing suspicions, Catherine clings to her love for Elliott. But a devastating secret that Catherine has buried could destroy whatever chance of happiness they have left.
Worldbuilding: The Oak Creek setting came with the little town with secrets, annoying attitudes, and discrimination moments galore.
Characters: Catherine was torn between tough choices. Elliot was very protective and pretty intuitive, which I really liked.
They both had tough lives, very dysfunctional families. They were both cute, but I can’t say I felt any chemistry there, and I wasn’t emotionally invested in either of their stories.
Plot: The story felt very slow to me for about the first half of the novel, so much so that it barely kept my interest. It covered years of their interaction, which might have been fun had I been emotionally invested, but I wasn’t. The second part of the story was very interesting to me; with the disappearance, it got more and more interesting as the ending was nearer. I really enjoyed the ending.
Writing: First person, past tense narrative, his/her POV.
Curb Appeal: Cute cover, hooking blurb – potential impulsive buy material for my admittedly rare YA moods.
I recommend All the Little Lights to fans of teen romance and stories which include mental illness.
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