Thursday, October 9, 2014

Review: Waiting for the Storm by Marie Landry

Waiting for the Storm

By Marie Landry

Blurb: After the death of her mother, the last thing seventeen-year-old Charlotte O'Dell wants to do is spend the summer on Angel Island with her family. Her younger sister hates her, and her dad is in his own little world. It's a recipe for a disastrous summer on the island, until Ezra Rhodes walks into her life.

The boy next door makes Charlotte forget her almost paralyzing fear of really living her life. Stunted from taking care of her mother in her last months, Charlotte is drowning. With Ezra, she feels something again, and as he repairs her family's summer home, she dares to think he might actually be fixing her, too. Ezra challenges Charlotte to leave her comfort zone, and as their friendship slowly blossoms into more, Charlotte begins to come alive again.

But Ezra has secrets...secrets he isn't sharing with Charlotte. Despite her new-found happiness in Ezra's arms, Charlotte can't help but feel there's a storm on the horizon. And she isn't sure if she and Ezra can weather it unscathed.

Genres: Young Adult, Romance, Realistic Fiction 

Publication Date: April 2, 2013

Pages: 205

Series: Angel Island (book 1)

My Rating: 2.5 stars

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review

Waiting for the Storm started off great. I got really into it from the beginning. Sadly, my enthusiasm for the story slowly lessened throughout the book due to some issues I began to have with the characters that I had initially enjoyed. It still held my interest the entire time, but I got mad at the main characters a lot.

The best thing about this book is the emotional aspect of it. Charlotte is dealing with the death of her mother, and the sadness, the loneliness, the hint of anger all feels real. It doesn't feel manufactured or over-dramatized; it feels like actual grieving.

It killed me to read about Charlotte and Ella's relationship, because I could not imagine going through that with my sister. While I thought it was very sad, it was also one of my other favorite parts of the book. I love reading about families and their interactions, especially sisters. Ella's and Charlotte's relationship, or lack thereof, was something unique that I haven't seen a lot of in the YA I've read.

Charlotte, in the beginning, was a character that really caught my attention. The first time you meet her, she is attending her mother's funeral and talking to estranged friends. As I learned more about her, I felt myself wanting to cry a bit. I could really feel her grief, and her broken relationship with her once-close sister Ella made for very readable interactions between the two of them.

Buuuuut....then Ezra came along. And I know I say this a lot, but I thought that there was insta-love between the two of them, and I didn't like the romance all that much. Ezra is an okay guy, but he's more of an ideal. He's more perfect than any guy, ESPECIALLY teenager/young adult wise, that I've ever met. Plus, he says romantic, rather cheesy stuff to Charlotte at almost every opportunity. Some of which I didn't even really agree with. Like this gem:

"Girls like her are jealous of girls like you because you're actually beautiful, not fake beautiful."

This line makes me mad. I don't like that he had to put one girl's beauty down in order to make Charlotte feel good about herself. Yes, the girl in particular that he was talking about was a bit mean, but that doesn't give him the right to call her 'fake' beautiful just because she wore a lot of makeup.

Once she met Ezra, Charlotte's character began to annoy me a bit more. It wasn't super bad, but she would do things that made me raise my eyebrows a bit. The first major annoyance was when she got mad at Ezra for not telling her a very personal secret that he had been hiding from her. Now, there are a couple issues I have with this:

1. He had told Charlotte other secrets about himself. It's not like he had been living a lie with her or something drastic like that; there was just one thing that he didn't feel comfortable sharing yet for GOOD REASON.

2. They've only known each other for a month. Regardless of whatever connection Charlotte feels for him, that's still not a long period of time. I definitely would not spill my secrets to someone that I had known for only a month.

3. Charlotte is mad that she told Ezra 'everything' but he didn't. But that was HER decision, not his. He can make his own choices. Like I said before, they've only known each other a month. He could have evenutually told her in his own time; he didn't have to tell her about this secret just because she had told him hers.

Then, Ella tells Charlotte a huge secret, and tells her not to tell anyone. But what does Charlotte do? She tells Ezra. She betrays her sister's trust, and for no good reason except that she doesn't want her and her boyfriend to have any secrets.

Waiting for the Storm had its good points and its bad points. I hope the sequel doesn't contain the problems of this book, because without them, this could have been a really awesome story for me.

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