Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Flat-Out Love by Jessica Park

Julie goes from high school in Ohio to college in Boston, MA. Mainly to start over and to find friends who really appreciate her love for reading old literature novels about the past.

But when she arrives to Boston and finds out that her apartment that she bought on Craigslist is really a burrito restaurant, things weren't looking too good for her.

Thankfully, Julie's mom called in a favor from her old roommate, Erin Watkins, when she was in college - who just happened to live near Julie's college.

And they had a spare bedroom that they were happy to let Julie use until she found a different apartment.

After awhile, when Julie found out that getting an apartment in a college town with a limited spending fee was extremely hard, Erin offered for her to stay at their house in exchange for picking up her youngest daughter, Celeste, from school.

And speaking of Celeste... she's a bit different than other 13 year old girls. Very different. In fact, she carries around a life-size cardboard figure of her old brother, Finn, who Celeste calls Flat Finn everywhere she goes. Everywhere.

Finn is traveling around the world and Julie is assuming Celeste created Flat Finn because she is having a hard time without Finn around.

Then there is the middle boy, Matt, the 21 MIT genius who wears geeky slogan shirts and is a very big nerd. But he is so good to his sister and does a lot to manage the house when his parents go AWOL.

So Julie is not bored at the Watkins house.

Oh, and another thing? She's been having very long conversations with real Finn through e-mail and Facebook, getting to know the eldest Watkins very well.

And she's sorta, kinda, maybe just a little bit falling for Finn - a guy that she has  never met before in real life but is quite charming over the Internet.

But Julie still wants to know why Flat Finn is there. The family is not a normal family - they definitely have their quirks. Not that Julie minds, but she wants to find out what really happened to make them like that.

However, when Julie really finds out what happened, there is no turning back. The connection between Julie and the Watkins will be stretched so far that there might not be a chance to go back to before. No matter how hard they try... Read Flat-Out Love by Jessica Park to find out what happens!

My Thoughts/Reflections 
When I first heard about this book, it was always connected with Jamie McGuire's novel Beautiful Disaster, which I absolutely loved (and reviewed here)! So I had extremely high hopes for this novel!

And was sorry to find out that I didn't love it as much as I wanted to... There was just something about the characters that I wasn't able to connect with. The way they talked and rambled about random stuff. The way they kept repeating the same thing with different words.

Where I really loved this book was at the very end. When the reader found out the big secret. I was able to guess what happened 3 pages before it was revealed to me and that is when I fell in love with this novel. But that was so close to the end that I didn't get to appreciate my love I gained for this book that much before it ended.

What I also loved was the way Julie became a part of the Watkins family. The way she treated Celeste was amazing. Flat Finn had a brain and Celeste made it known. And Julie didn't even blink by the life-size cardboard brother. She went along with it right from the beginning and had her own conversations with Flat Finn! It was pretty adorable I thought.

So there were good and bad parts to this novel. I did enjoy it, and loved the ending, but it was lacking something. Plus, if anyone compares a book to Beautiful Disaster, I am almost always disappointed because my love for that book is over the top.

However, for readers who want to read about an odd family who a strange girl slowly heals from an event that broke them, just to become a family member herself and falls in love with each and every one of them, this would be a perfect book for you.

Also, this is a New Age book, meaning between YA and Adult. College setting. This genre is starting to become more and more popular lately, which I'm really enjoying!

I'm glad that I finally got to read it and see what everyone was all hyped up about. It was a great story line and definitely makes me look at things differently!

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