Pick of the Day

Sparks Fly by Sarah Sanders

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Take every love-at-first-sight movie; add to that every romantic movie of falling head-over-heels in love with someone in a ...

Say Her Name by Stefani Deoul

⭐⭐⭐

We feel that YA novels usually are more layered and tackle many more subjects than the regular novels for not-so-young. There is also more idealism in the characters, which is always nice.

Sid Rubin, a nerd and coding-queen, has a group of five close friends – Imani, Jimmy, Ari, and Vikram. When Sid sets eyes on her Mystery Dream Girl (MDG), the group gets behind her effort to find the green-eyed beauty. MDG is Ava who turns out to be deaf. A determined Sid decides to learn sign language and Imani accompanies her for the classes. The ‘posse’ is with Sid every step of the way till Sid and Ava start dating – and Sid is unable to balance her romantic and friendship relationships. A snowball fight in Central Park which includes Sid, Ava, Sid’s friends and Ava’s bestie, Joe leads to Imani tumbling down and landing on a skeletal hand. Turns out to be eight skeletons literally chained together and the group sets out to find out who they were even as Ava leaves Sid and Sid struggles to get back her footing with her friends – especially with best friend, Imani.

Though the books starts off with the romance, the mystery and group dynamic is more the focus. However, Ava is an intriguing character. We’d love to know her better and so, so want a happy romance and life for her. Though Ava leaves Sid, we empathised with Ava more than with Sid. We found Ava completely justifiable and justified. The other character that we totally loved was Imani. (A side note: we are expected a romance between Imani and Sid soon.) And yes, the whole ‘posse’ of friends is also cool. We loved the writing style. YA novels tend to have youth-speak, created new words, lots of pop culture references, and in this case a huge amount of extra bits of interestingness thrown in because of Sid’s propensity for digressions which make them highly readable and entertaining. We loved Imani’s sentiment of returning respect to the unknown people they’ve literally stumbled upon (that’s the idealism we spoke about earlier).

This is a fast moving, very entertaining YA read.  

⭐⭐⭐

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