Sara wants two things: to get into her first-choice university and to find true love. Tobey also wants two things: to win Battle of the Bands and to make Sara fall in love with him.
Told in alternating points of view, Sara and Tobey's real connection will have everyone rooting from them from the minute they meet!
Written in the first person, this book alternates in short sequences between Tobey and Sara. Set in America there is obviously going to be a slight cultural disconnect with New Zealand readers as the Grade system is different. I think they go to university at about 18/19years? This book is based on the last year of Tobey and Sarah's time at high school before they and their friends go to their chosen Universities.
Sara likes Dave and Dave likes Sara but so does Tobey. Sara realises that boys want different things at different stages of a relationship and that a boy is not worth losing all your friends over. Her relationship with her friends is explored and the development and progression of the relationship between Sara and Tobey is the central theme to the story. I like that the story is told from a his and her point of view and for the female reader (with the pink cover I am guessing not many boys will pick this book up) getting the boys point of view across is crucial! Having both Tobey and Sara's friends involved also gives this story a lot more depth.
Given that the characters are (I am guessing) about 18 years of age the story is rather simply written for this age group . Whilst the themes of this book are good and definitely worth reading about some of the book just felt misplaced given the age group being written about. At several points in the book Sara discusses her love life with one of her male teachers. Would this really ever happen? It didn't sit well with me.
I almost felt that the focus on "it" could have been removed and this book would have been more suitably aimed at 12/13/14year olds. In fact if the sexual theme was removed I would rate this book a lot higher and definitely very appropriate in its issues for the young teen age group.
So overall not sure that I will be putting this on the bookshelf for future reading for my little misses until they are so old that they will probably have moved on to more challenging writing.
When It Happens is a teenage romance novel. It reminded me of the Sweet Valley High books I read as a teenager but with some sexual content. There is a reason why there is a sticker stating "CONTAINS EXPLICIT CONTENT" on the front cover. It also has the odd F word too. This is definitely a book that is better for older teens.
As an adult I found it an easy read about the things teenagers find important: the future, love and what others think about them. The chapters were very short. Because it was written in a her diary, his diary style there was often two different recounts of the same event.
I often lost track of time while reading this as I wanted to know what the other character's take it was or what would happen next. There were also times where I put the book down for a couple of days and was able to pick up the story without a problem.
I liked the fact that many of the characters came for screwed up homes but still managed to be wholesome and achieve well at school. So often I read and see on the screen people that blame their upbringing for their current situation. There are some good messages that come through in this book about working hard and valuing your friends.
Random listing from 'Books'...
A team of sleepy vehicles make their way home from a busy day on the building site in this charming bedtime story. A perfect rhyming bedtime read in the style of Goodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site.
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"A torn jacket is soon mended; but hard words bruise the heart of a child."
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807 - 1882)