(Website, Twitter)Series: Hundred Oaks #8
Published by Sourcebooks Fire on July 5th 2016
Genres: Coming of Age, Contemporary, Dating & Relationships, Dating & Sex, Family, Love & Romance, Romance, Social Issues, Sports & Recreation, Young Adult, Young Adult Fiction
Source: Sourcebooks Fire
There are no mistakes in love.
Captain of the soccer team, president of the Debate Club, contender for valedictorian: Taylor's always pushed herself to be perfect. After all, that's what is expected of a senator's daughter. But one impulsive decision-one lie to cover for her boyfriend-and Taylor's kicked out of private school. Everything she's worked so hard for is gone, and now she's starting over at Hundred Oaks High.
Soccer has always been Taylor's escape from the pressures of school and family, but it's hard to fit in and play on a team that used to be her rival. The only person who seems to understand all that she's going through is her older brother's best friend, Ezra. Taylor's had a crush on him for as long as she can remember. But it's hard to trust after having been betrayed. Will Taylor repeat her past mistakes or can she score a fresh start?
Social media is a marvelous thing. The first time I heard about Miranda Kenneally was through twitter. A new young adult contemporary writer is like Christmas in April for me, so I was excited to start her new book, even though it’s the eighth in a series (something I didn’t realize until later).
Taylor Lukens was smart and athletic. She had everything going for her as the daughter of a senator, and all she needed was a nudge and a name drop and she was a shoo in to be one of Yale’s incoming freshmen next Fall. It took some time for me to get used to Taylor. I’ll admit, I set this book down a few times and read something else here and there. Then, one day I picked it up and something clicked. While it did take some time to get used to Taylor, I liked her. Her life revolved around soccer, and I liked how even when nothing went her way, she swallowed her pride for the sake of the game that she loved. She knew what she wanted—who she wanted—and wasn’t afraid to admit it.
Not only did she get thrown out of school for something that she didn’t do, Ezra Carmichael showed up. The last time she saw him things didn’t end well, but I wanted her to give him another chance because I had to know why he seemed so interested in her. Their love story caught my eye, and I liked them together and their chemistry. Ezra was a sweetheart and reminded me that chivalry is not dead—opening doors and all the other sweet things that I want, and I can’t be the only one out there.
This is real YA. It dealt with things that teens and young adults face every day—issues of drugs and sex and scandal (though let’s hope it might not be as dramatic as Taylor’s political faux pas). I would love to read more of Kenneally’s work after reading this book, even though this wasn’t my favorite book of the summer. I’m even more interested in reading more of her stuff after realizing that this is the eighth book in a series, though it doesn’t have to be read in any particular order and works as a standalone.
If you like sports or romance or a combination of the two, this book is sure to strike a cord. It’s honest and real and had many relatable moments and a relatable character in Taylor. There can’t be many out there who wouldn’t want an Ezra by their side, but you’ll also want Taylor’s strength and resilience to anything that life threw at her.