Thursday, 23 July 2015
This Raging Light - Estelle Laure
"Can the best thing happen at the worst time?
Her dad went crazy. Her mom left town. She has bills to pay and a little sister to look after. Now is not the time for level-headed seventeen-year-old Lucille to fall in love. But love—messy, inconvenient love—is what she's about to experience when she falls for Digby Jones, her best friend's brother. With blazing longing that builds to a fever pitch, Estelle Laure's soulful debut will keep readers hooked and hoping until the very last page." - Goodreads
I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
My thoughts? I enjoyed this book, it wasn't quite what I was expecting, but it was readable. A lot could have been changed for me to love it, but a lot that happened was unexpected and shocking. Now obviously when you describe a book as 'readable', you know you're in for a semi-negative review.
I first started reading this and nearly cried. Imagine being put in such a negative situation, where your parents have left you and you have to fend for yourself and look after a sibling? The thought is enough to make anyone cry. But Lu manages it, and it seems to be going fine. I think that's what the problem was, yeah of course it's hard and working as a waitress all week as well as going to school and having to make sure your little sister is looked after, is a challenge for even the most experienced adult/parent. But I didn't feel as if Lu really struggled. The writing didn't make me care for her, I knew somewhere deep down that she was going to manage it and I didn't feel as if she really struggled. It's like listening to someone say 'yeah my cat died, it was so hard, i cried all year' - of course, it's sad, but I don't feel anything. Lucille's innermost, deepest thoughts just didn't get portrayed very well. That's the point of this paragraph, I felt no connection to her.
I loved loved loved Wren, she was my favourite character in this whole book - again, not much of a connection, but she brought so much light and happiness to such a depressing story, it was refreshing. I think I would have enjoyed this a lot more if it was centered around Wren, instead of Lucille.
Halfway through, at exactly 51% I got bored. I didn't feel any interest to continue reading, nothing particularly interesting or different was happening - I found it hard to remain interested in these characters that I felt nothing for. And then, when something did happen - it was so random, I didn't really understand why it happened. There was no point, it was just adding more drama and stress to this poor girls life, as in 'hey your life sucks already, let's just make it worse for jokes!' - what?
The final and most irritating thing of this whole book, is that there was no point of it. It's like the story was unfinished. There should have been at least another hundred pages for an ending. It was so abrupt and nothing was solved. I hate reading a book that is effectively pointless. You have the 'beginning, the something big happens, the something bad happens, the happy ending comes or everything is resolved one way or another', that's generally what happens in books - but this one, half of it was missing. The end of the book was not there. Ugh so frustrating.
I did find a quote that I loved and highlighted and posted on Goodreads, so I'll end this review on a happy not. This is the only quote that has stuck with me for a long time.
"Explain to me what the point of living is, if you aren't willing to fight for the truths in your heart, to risk getting hurt."
It hit close to home. It really did.
Overall, I enjoyed this but it could have taken a different route and to be honest, it would have been a lot better if it did. I rated this book 3* on Goodreads - despite everything, I did enjoy reading it.