This was one of my OMG need to read NOW books, and so I was delighted that one of my libraries had it in stock and in English even. Yes! A day after I got it I started reading it, but quickly my love for the book fell apart. The first chapter was pretty nice, I loved the second one, but yeah.
The main problem to this would be Hope. Hope who is according to the book 15 going on 16. However there is only one point in the book that I saw a 15/16 year old girl. That is near the end, when she realises things (finally), but the rest of the book? I saw a 10, maybe 11, maaaaayyyyybeeee at points 12 year old girl. I have to say it helped me to see this as a kid’s book and not as an YA book. As soon as I just kept ignoring the fact this girl was officially supposed to be 15/16 and just saw her as a child of 10 maybe 11 I started to like the book again a bit. A bit. Yes, because Hope is still highly annoying. I know I know, I am not a teen. However, I was a teen, I know teens, and let me tell you.. I have never met anyone who acts like this, not me, not my friends, not the people I know who are teens.
Sure, we were immature then, we made some stupid decisions, however neither me, nor my friends, classmates and other peeps I remember from that period, and none of the teens I see now act like Hope do. They get basic social cues, imaginary friends have died a long time ago, sure some words are hard, but come on most of the words that Hope did wrong are just simple words that most 12/13 year olds know. And there are a ton of other things. Like how she didn’t seem to understand how to dress herself and just threw on things that seemed to look good, and let’s not talk about make-up…. that poor sister of hers. Horoscopes? She went so far to fully believe in them and let her life be ruled by them. She is constantly making up scripts and rewriting reality, she doesn’t seem to understand there is something called reality.
The romance between her and Jamie? In London it felt more like a romance, however in LA it felt more like an older brother being dragged around by his little sister. 😐 Poor guy. I can just imagine how he felt. However! As the story continued I saw another Jamie and I was NOT amused with this guy. Really. He is calling his girlfriends crazy, but I am fully on board with what Hope said later on. I was definitely disturbed by his behaviour and how Hope was dragged into it. She is already immature and doesn’t get cues and all that, but for once I was proud of her, she tried her best to ask him what is going on. Why he acted this way. Still, I wasn’t amused with that she went along with so many of his shitty behaviour and how she didn’t see how wrong it was until later on.
Then again, flying after your love is very very creepy. I do hope that Hope sees it was wrong and not a good idea to do so. And that she learned a lesson.
I found it very weird that her siblings totally didn’t get that she was gone until 3 days after she left. What the hell? I knew the family was dysfunctional as hell, but this was just totally off the charts. I also wasn’t too much of a fan of the siblings. Again, it helped me when I thought of Hope as a child, 10/11 year old, because that was in general also how her family treated her. Like a child. Like someone incapable of doing things on her own.
I wasn’t a fan of the mom, I found her weak and bleh. Come on, you have a family, you have 4 kids who need your attention, get to it. 😐 The dad? I wasn’t a fan at first, but at least he eventually realises things went too far. That things should have handled differently.
I did think it was a bit weird that no one was hyped about Hope, I get that she is wearing a shirt/sweater over her head, but I would think that the media knows about her? I have read enough about paparazzi to know they aren’t one to care much about restrictions. And someone ought to have seen Hope once in her 15/16 years old, yet she was just able to walk around without anyone recognising her.
The ending… well, I will put this under spoiler tags.
I did love Roz, she was such a sweet woman and I loved all she did for Hope and Hope’s dad. The revelation on who she actually was was a surprise, a good surprise, and I was just delighted.
I also loved reading about London and LA and seeing various landmarks/fun things.
It was also quite fun to read about The Valentines and all they did, how famous they are and to read about the family history.
But yeah, I just wasn’t enjoying this one. I kept reading on because I was hoping it would get better, I wanted to see a real Hope, someone acting her age or at least closer to it. I won’t be continuing this series.