Monday, 8 February 2016

Review: This Song is (Not) For You by Laura Nowlin

Publication Date: January 5th 2016
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Length: 224 pages

Thanks to Netgalley and Sourcebooks for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review

Bandmate, best friend or boyfriend? For Ramona, one choice could mean losing them all. 
Ramona and Sam are best friends. She fell for him the moment they met, but their friendship is just too important for her to mess up. Sam loves April, but he would never expect her to feel the same way--she's too quirky and cool for someone like him. Together, they have a band, and put all of their feelings for each other into music.
Then Ramona and Sam meet Tom. He's their band's missing piece, and before Ramona knows it, she's falling for him. But she hasn't fallen out of love with Sam either.
How can she be true to her feelings without breaking up the band?

You know when a book has so much potential and just fails to deliver and you want to wrap it up in blankets and weep for the lost possibilities? Yeah, that.
It’s a nice enough idea that attempts to tackle a different romantic story to your usual YA fare. There’s Ramona – hyperactive, always cheerful, and in love with her two bandmates. Sam – quiet, shy, and definitely in love with Ramona. And Tom – asexual, kind of in love with both Sam and Ramona, and feels disconnected and depressed in regard to most other things. See?! Look at all this potential! But instead of actually living up to that, it glosses over it all and leaves you feeling grumpy and let down.

Having an asexual character made such a refreshing change, but unfortunately it really isn’t handled very well. The love triangle just ends up feeling like a bit of a mess. The entire thing is built so that you feel as though there will be some big revelation or confrontation, but it never comes. Everything builds and builds, and you keep waiting and then suddenly, it’s done. It leaves you feeling frustrated, and like the main point of the story was never really reached. I like fluff in my stories, but I also like a bit of substance, and sadly this story was really lacking that.

I want to see more diversity in the romances we see in YA fiction, I want to see more relationships that incorporate more than two people – that represent asexual people. But I want to see them done right, and sadly this book really doesn’t.

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