Description: The summer between school and sixth form. When Hope doesn’t get into drama college, and her friends do, all her plans fall apart. She’s struggling with anger, grief for her father and a sense that her own body is against her. She meets Riley on the ferry and his texts give her someone to talk to. But this isn’t a story about a boy fixing everything. It’s about trying new things, having the courage to ask for help and that when things seem to be all over, that might be just the beginning.
Hope is wonderful; she’s a strong and empowered voice. She uses that voice to inwardly project anger, fear and confusion. Sometimes it bleeds to an outward expression, but I felt it more within the inward thoughts and feelings.
Her passion for the performing arts are in conflict with her feelings of rejection from her final audition.
Seeing her overcome her obstacles of grief, mental health and relationships is incredibly endearing to the character.
Riley, the young man Hope meets at the start is an interesting character. While he is a romantic interest, there is something a little more innocent and organic about their connection and development.
Interestingly, we know very little about him, but we also see that he is complex and well rounded; not a 2-dimensional plot device that he could have come across as, had this book been in someone else’s hands.
It is a heartfelt plot, taking place over the summer between the end of GCSEs and the start of college education; whatever that might mean for Hope.
It is a clever, interwoven story; her job over the summer helps Hope in so many ways that you would not expect from the outset; from her undiagnosed mental health to her future beyond her dream career.
Having such a strong character is half the battle when it comes to this beautiful and educating novel. It is very clear that research has gone into this. From informing the reader about organ donation to Hope’s diagnosis.
This is a book that I will be purchasing many copies of in order to have them in my school lending library.
Hope will be discussed as part of the wonderful Zoe’s #nspBookClub on Saturday 14th October at 6pm. Come join us 😀