by Lucy Keating
my rating: 2 out of 5 stars
Synopsis via Goodreads:
Vibrantly offbeat and utterly original, Lucy Keating’s debut novel combines the unconventional romance of Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind with the sweetness and heart of Jenny Han.
For as long as Alice can remember, she has dreamed of Max. Together, they have traveled the world and fallen deliriously, hopelessly in love. Max is the boy of her dreams—and only her dreams. Because he doesn’t exist.
But when Alice walks into class on her first day at a new school, there he is. Real Max is nothing like Dream Max. He’s stubborn and complicated. And he has a whole life Alice isn’t a part of. Getting to know each other in reality isn’t as perfect as Alice always hoped.
Alarmingly, when their dreams start to bleed into their waking hours, the pair realize that they might have to put an end to a lifetime of dreaming about each other. But when you fall in love in your dreams, can reality ever be enough?
I gotta say real quick: How gorgeous is this cover?! I can’t get enough of it! I love the blend of colors, the font, and the eyes. It’s so stunning!
Unfortunately, the stunning cover was the best thing that the book had going for it. Despite the creative idea, the story was really lacking in excitement. I struggled to get through the book with the insane belief that the story could improve. Aside from the random dreams, nothing exciting happens.
First thing first, this came up right away and it annoys the hell out of me whenever I see it happen in YA Novels. It annoys me to see school authority figures say things like “avoid the troublemakers” or “take care not to be involved with the bad students,” or “we wouldn’t want to see you fall in with that group”
maybe it was because I went to public school but my principle, teachers, and other authority people didn’t give a shit who you hung out with. No one cared but I see this come up in contemporary reads all the time. And on the other hand, maybe it’s different in private schools where students are Ivy League-bound.
Sometimes I feel like school figures take too much interst in just one persons life and I find that to be very unrealistic.
As for the characters; this was another situation where I liked the secondary characters a lot more than the primary characters. Alice was one of the most boring characters I have ever met and there wasn’t anything remotely likable about Max. Both of them were incredibly indecisive and immature to the point where I wanted to reach through the book and smack both of them. You would think that the state of their sanity would be a top concern right? Nope Alice’s top concern was whether or not Max loved her. I feel like her desire to figure out the dreams meaning really took the backseat as she started to get closer to Max.
Another thing that really annoys that happened is when a character tells themselves that they aren’t going to do the thing, but not even 30 seconds later they’re doing the thing. That honestly frustrates me so much.
Now, you’re probably sitting there wondering, “If you hated this so much, why did you keep reading it? Why not just DNF and move onto something better?”
I have a really hard time dnfing books. It just bugs me. I always want to see a book through the end. Don’t know why but just do.
Overall from rereading the synopsis and thinking about the story, it doesn’t divert from it. I went through and read reviews from other readers on Goodreads and I’m honestly thinking “did I even read the same book?”
In the end, this book just wasn’t for me. I’m not going to recommend it to anyone but at the same time, I won’t discourage anyone. Just because it wasn’t my cup of tea doesn’t mean that someone else won’t love it.