Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Optimists Die First by Susin Nielsen

3 Stars

"Part of me wanted to fling myself on the bed and hold him. Part of me wanted to fling myself on the bed and pummel him."

I received a copy via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

30335388I have a few issues with this book. Which is a definite shame since I wanted to love it. The cover is gorgeous, it sounded great. It just wasn't so great in execution.

Firstly, I don't suffer from anxiety or anything but I'm at least 95 percent sure that Petula's anxiety wasn't well written at all. It was like it was written to add quirks and things for readers to find 'relatable'. I don't know, it seemed strange and very exaggerated to me. I don't think the author intended for Petula to be presented this way and in the acknowledgements she talks about the research she did in writing the book so, I think the author had her heart in the right place. I just hope she can learn from it.

It described itself as a love story for cynics which totally appealed to me, I'm a huge cynic in real life. Not so much when it comes to reading but that's different. But, nevertheless, I thought this was perfect but I didn't really get a whole lot of it. It didn't feel to me like the romance was the big theme here. Which is strange because it was a big part of the book but it I just wasn't really feeling it.

I think the idea for the plot was lovely. I loved how the kids all united to help each other get better but again, I didn't quite like the way it was done. I felt like the book was perhaps a bit short and therefore rushed. So we didn't get much on the other characters and for me it almost defeated the purpose.

I'd have liked Petula's impulsiveness to have been touched on more but instead it was all her 'quirks' because they were cuter and easier to like. It seemed to be pushed to the side. Which seems funny to me because I thought the book was supposed to be about those sorts of issues.

I loved the cats. They were probably my favourite characters. It made me want more cats, they really stole the show and I loved their book inspired names. I'm totally going to give my next pet a book inspired name.

Anyway, I think the book was good in theory. I don't think any harm was intended so I am hoping the author will improve. It was a quick read and it had it's cute moments and a big theme was friendship so that was nice. I'm pretty undecided on this. I've given it a meh rating because I really can't make up my mind.