I received this book for free (hey, thanks!) in exchange for an honest review. I promise that this does NOT affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. For real.Young Widows Club by Alexandra Coutts
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Published by Macmillan on November 10th 2015
Format: ARC (304 pages) • Source: Around the World ARC Tours
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First came love, then came marriage, and then...
For seventeen-year-old Tam, running off to marry her musician boyfriend is the ideal escape from her claustrophobic high-school life on the island, and the ultimate rebellion against her father and stepmother. But when Tam becomes a widow just weeks later, the shell-shocked teen is forced to find her way forward by going back to the life she thought she’d moved beyond—even as her struggle to deal with her grief is forcing her to reinvent herself and reach out to others in ways she never imagined.
Sigh. For a book with such a sad premise, I sure didn’t feel anything. I wasn’t expecting to like this one that much but I wanted to try it out anyways. The writing wasn’t too bad but the feels and emotions were just straight up nonexistent for me.
Tamsen (weird name) got married to her longtime boyfriend Noah when she was just seventeen. Six weeks later, he dies unexpectedly in his sleep. She’s reeling and not sure what to do with herself. Her entire life revolved around him and his band; she even dropped out of high school to work on band manager stuff. The book focused on Tam’s life six months after he passes away. She’s forced to join a Young Widows Club, go back to high school, and think about getting her life back on track.
The overall premise of the book was pretty good and interesting enough. Tam as a character was super boring because she didn’t have a life or interests aside from Noah and his friends. Moving on from his death was a huge deal because she had to figure out what kind of future she actually wanted, without him in it. She spends time getting back in touch with her old friend Lula (another weird name) and repairing her relationship with her dad and stepmother.
Like I said, I definitely didn’t feel a lot of emotion from this book. Her struggles in finding herself and moving on were at the forefront, but they still didn’t feel real to me. They weren’t fully fleshed out. Looking back, it really doesn’t feel like anything happened. This is the kind of book that could benefit from another 50 pages or so of details added throughout. There weren’t enough memories of Noah for me to feel anything, enough information about her family or what happened to their relationship when she decided to get married, or even enough about the Young Widows Club (which was given the most attention out of everything, I think).
The Young Widows Club was a cool concept in the book. I liked their group exploring the stages of grief and trying to move on. Colin, one of the people in the group with Tam, is a 26 year old widow that lost his wife to cancer. I was creeped out by him View Spoiler »because Tam was only 17 when they started some kind of relationship. I think they used each other to move on, even though they barely even did anything. Overall, I was uncomfortable with the age difference especially because she was under 18. « Hide Spoiler Just, NOPE.
I liked the ending. I think it left some things to the imagination but was very hopeful. You can assume what may or may not happen next without having everything laid out perfectly. I can’t really say that I recommend this book because it was pretty boring and middle-of-the-road, but if you’re interested in the topic I’d just give it a shot. I don’t regret reading it but it certainly didn’t leave a lasting impression.
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