Author: Alessandro D’ Avenia
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Publication Date: September 4, 2018
Genre: YA, Contemporary, Romance
My Rating: 4 Stars
“I was born on the first day of school, and I grew up and old in just two hundred days . . .”
Sixteen-year-old Leo has a way with words, but he doesn’t know it yet. He spends his time texting, polishing soccer maneuvers, and killing time with Niko and Silvia. Until a new teacher arrives and challenges him to give voice to his dreams.
And so Leo is inspired to win over the red-haired beauty, Beatrice. She doesn’t know Leo exists, but he’s convinced that his dream to win her over will come true. When Leo lands in the hospital and learns that Beatrice has been admitted too, his mission to be there for her will send him on a thrilling but heartbreaking journey. He wants to help her but doesn’t know how—and his dream of love will force him to grow up fast.
Having already sold over a million copies in Italy, Alessandro D’Avenia’s debut novel is considered the Italian The Fault in Our Stars. Now available in English for the first time, this rich, funny, and heartwarming coming-of-age tale asks us to explore the meaning—and the cost—of friendship, and shows us what happens when suffering bursts into the world of teenagers and renders the world of adults speechless.
Plot. I was very pleasantly surprised by this book. This was pitched as the Italian version of The Fault in Our Stars. I hated that book. (Please don’t hate me!!) But let me tell you, I LOVED this book! I cried. I NEVER cry while reading. I have no idea why. I just don’t. But this had the hope that The Fault in Our Stars was missing for me. I had so many feels! And it was just a beautiful story!
Characters. Leo was actually really sweet. The way he talked about his love and the way he treated her was just unheard of in today’s time. He wrote songs and letters to her. It was seriously the cutest thing ever! And I loved how steady Silvia was there for Leo. She was always there when he fell or needed something. I also adored his teacher! What an awesome guy to get involved and to care for his students. More teachers should be like that.
Final Thoughts. This was a relatively short book, but it was beautifully written. Again, I was super surprised how much I loved this book. I normally do not go for contemporaries, I usually find them boring. But this one had some missing piece that isn’t there in other books. I loved the overall message of this book, to never give up on your dreams, but to maybe reexamine them sometimes, and make them into something better and stronger.
*I received a finished copy from TLC book tours for an honest review! I’m on the Instagram tour for this on September 12!*
*Post contains my Amazon affiliate link*