I have to say this, then I’ll move on to the actual review: Jessica Park is My Homegirl. I need to get a t-shirt made. Anyone else want one?
But seriously. Left Drowning was the first of Jessica’s books that I read. Wonderful, steamy, emotionally wrenching, yet ultimately hopeful. Flat Out Love is freaking ah-mazing in a whole different way.
I immediately loved Julie. She is one of the most realistic characters I’ve read in a long time. And the best part? She’s not all totally screwed up and needing of therapy! Yay! Don’t get me wrong, those kinds of characters can be fun (you know what I mean) as well, but I also love mostly normal people. Sometimes. And she needs to be on pretty solid mental ground, considering the situation she walks into with the Watkins family. How she comes to live with the Watkins family (the mom of which was Julie’s mom’s college roommate), is also (gasp!) somewhat realistic! Be still my New-Adult-reading heart.
Pretty much every character in Flat Out Love is likeable. Seriously. How is that even possible?! I’ve already told you why I like Julie. The members of the Watkins family are really entertaining and sympathetic. Matt and Finn of course. But most especially Celeste. And there’s a whole book just about her! I’ve already spent a portion of my Christmas book money on that one.
As for the story. What an amazing, creative, yet moderately realistic love story. One of my favorite things about Jessica’s books is that the love isn’t insta. Left Drowning took place over a few years, and Flat Out Love covers one year. How wonderful is it to actually follow a couple as they fall in love? Really wonderful. And as usual, Jessica brings tears to my eyes, makes me hate her, then makes me love her.
One last thing. The twist? Very cool. I figured it out before the end, but that didn’t make it any less awesome.