Monday, October 23, 2017

Book Review: Holly Freakin' Hughes

By Sara Steven

Meet Holly Hughes, a moderately successful teen advice columnist living in a studio apartment on the Upper East Side with her boyfriend Stephen. She has it all, but at the ripe age of thirty-one, she wants more. She wants to be married, she wants a family, and she's going to have it all with Stephen.

At least, that's what she thought, until Stephen announces he's gay, and the domino effect of unfortunate events begins. She soon finds herself unemployed, single, and living in her sister's house on Long Island, working as her niece's babysitter for less than minimum wage. She's pretty certain she's destined to live in the Land of Mediocrity forever.

And then, her niece runs face-first into a tall, handsome man at the bookstore... (Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads.)

There’s something undeniably quirky about Holly Hughes. So much has happened to her in such a short amount of time, a lot of change and turmoil, and while she doesn’t take any of it in stride, there’s something about her that embraces the special silver lining around the dark cloud above her head. And she does it in a way that is humorous and honest. You can’t help but feel drawn to her.

I really appreciated the two points of views that are offered up between Holly, as well as Brandon, the handsome man at the bookstore. This gave me the chance to find out the backstory for both, to delve a little deeper into why Holly is the way she is when it comes to trusting people, and why Brandon is the way he is when it comes to relationships.

I actually found myself getting a little annoyed with Brandon and his relationship issues, as though he were a real-life person I wanted to knock some sense into. Maybe because there comes a point where you just have to take that leap, and he seems to drag his feet an awful lot. I also got annoyed with Holly when it comes to how she views herself, particularly when a big secret is exposed. But, the characters in Hughes are written like real-life individuals, so what else would I expect? We all have positive attributes and flaws, and that’s what makes Holly and Brandon so life-like. They’re full of ‘em.

I love the tension that’s simmering just below the surface. The tension between Holly and Brandon, between Holly and Stephen, between Holly and her sister. I had a hard time putting this book down, because I wanted to see what would happen next for all involved. Also, I have to give a shout out to one of the funniest characters in Holly Freakin' Hughes, Esther. She reminded me of a cross between Betty White and my own grandmother, who can be a handful at times, but in a good way. Esther says what she thinks and is hard as nails, providing a much needed sounding board for Holly. I think she’s become one of my favorite characters!

Thanks to Kelsey Kingsley for the book in exchange for an honest review.

1 comment:

Wall-to-wall books said...

Ahhhhh I want to read this!
OMG this book sounds great!
Going on my wish list!