Summary from Goodreads:
Andie had it all planned out. When you are a politician’s daughter who’s pretty much raised yourself, you learn everything can be planned or spun, or both. Especially your future. Important internship? Check. Amazing friends? Check. Guys? Check (as long as we’re talking no more than three weeks).
But that was before the scandal. Before having to be in the same house with her dad. Before walking an insane number of dogs. That was before Clark and those few months that might change her whole life. Because here’s the thing—if everything’s planned out, you can never find the unexpected. And where’s the fun in that?
This review is spoiler free.
“Once, I dared to dare greatly.”
Content warning: underaged drinking, mentions of consensual sex
As previously stated many, many times, I am incapable of sticking to a review style. I keep saying one day, but the fact is that one day will probably never come. Anyways, this review is going to be written in my original style, ie, by listing out what I loved and what I didn’t love so much.
What I Loved
I love how I keep loving the main characters of the books I’m reading, because I feel like that is normally a rare occurrence for me. Andie was very, very relatable. She likes to be in control of everything and panics when she isn’t. All of her mentions of spiraling and not knowing how to get things under control really hit me hard and made me go “hmm, sounds familiar.” Given that I saw a good bit of myself in those aspects of Andie, seeing her figure out a way to give up control was really empowering and I loved it.
Andie’s relationship with her dad
My relationship with my dad can easily be described as shaky at best, so in the beginning of the book that was yet another thing I found in common with her. However, as the book went on, Andie and her dad picked up the pieces of their broken relationship and did their best to fit them back together and by the end they had grown pretty close. It was amazing and I love how it slowly developed in a natural way instead of just being “wow my dad and I love each other again!”
The iconic friend group
While this book is primarily a romance, there is also a pretty big focus on Andie’s friend group and I loved that. I love any book that features strong, healthy friendships if I’m being honest. Everything about this friendship group was amazing though, the harmless bets, the group text messages, the scavenger hunt, the whole combing names thing, it was all great and I loved it.
I just had to put a sentence or two in here about how I loved all of the dogs present in this book (and on the cover, my mother particularly enjoyed the presence of the bulldog on the cover). They were all excellent boys and girls and I hope that they are all healthy and well and being taken on an adequate amount of walks that involve seeing and chasing lots of squirrels.
The theme that it’s okay to change plans and do what makes you happy
I like to think that I’m pretty open on here, especially when it comes to talking about some of my mental health struggles and how they affect my school and my plans. I went into my freshman year of college planning to double major and then go straight to get a masters and left my freshman year by filing for a leave of absence after three mini breakdowns in my dorm room. Needless to say, my plans have changed and it is always super validating to see that other people also change plans. I loved seeing Andie grapple with not having things in control for once, it was really relatable and hit kind of hard.
What I Didn’t Love So Much
This book was long. I am not complaining, I love long books, but I think this one didn’t need to be a long book. It seemed like the first 400 pages were all fluff and exposition of sorts and then the last 100 or so pages were all of the main conflict, which made the conflict and then the solution to that conflict seem very awkward and rushed. I think that the book could have been shorter and in general the pacing could have been better, but it obviously didn’t ruin the book for me.
I have no idea what to title this fun little tangent, I have actually spent like three minutes changing it between three and four things and can’t decide so this is me giving up. I’m going to call it “the fight” because it was just that, a big blow out fight between the super close friend group that I adored. While I do understand how and why it happened, it seemed super cliche and honestly a little unneeded. I just wasn’t a fan for whatever reason.
I really really liked this book and I can’t wait to pick up another Morgan Matson soon, they seem like the perfect summer contemporaries and that is exactly what I am looking for right about now. I would recommend this book to anyone who wants a fun contemporary and also anyone who likes dogs. The dogs in this book are 10/10. Very good boys and girls.
“The idea that you could rethink the thing you’d always thought you wanted and change your plan – it was almost a revolutionary concept. That you could choose what would make you happy, not successful. It was the opposite of everything I had long believed to be true.”