Wednesday, January 6, 2010
Fresh New Voice of YA- The Secret Year by Jennifer Hubbard
The Secret Year by Jennifer Hubbard
"Take Romeo and Juliet. Add The Outsiders. Mix thoroughly.
Colt and Julia were secretly together for an entire year, and no one—not even Julia’s boyfriend— knew. They had nothing in common, with Julia in her country club world on Black Mountain and Colt from down on the flats, but it never mattered. Until Julia dies in a car accident, and Colt learns the price of secrecy. He can’t mourn Julia openly, and he’s tormented that he might have played a part in her death. When Julia’s journal ends up in his hands, Colt relives their year together at the same time that he’s desperately trying to forget her. But how do you get over someone who was never yours in the first place?"- summary from Amazon
This was a really interesting book and a wonderful debut. Hubbard's writing is very realistic and atmospheric, especially during the flashbacks when Colt is remembering his times with Julia. I loved the inclusion of Julia's secret letters to Colt sprinkled throughout the book. It made for an interesting contrast to read about her thoughts regarding her times with Colt and her life in general, and then reading Colt's thoughts as well on the same events. It was refreshing to read a book from a male's perspective too; it was definitely very realistic and Hubbard did a great job of writing Colt. The short length is an issue with me, as always, since it's a hardcover but it also felt like a lot of the characters weren't fleshed out enough and it seemed a bit cramped. It was fun reading about Colt's brother in college for a reason I can't state since it's a big reveal and also because I like reading about people in college (though my college was not like the one here, lol). The ending is very good too and I liked it because it seemed like the right place and way for it to end. Definitely a recommended book though.
FTC: Recieved ARC from publisher. Amazon link is an Associate link; any profits go toward funding contests.