Sunday, December 20, 2020

REVIEW: Beach Read by Emily Henry


This is my first novel by Emily Henry. I've kinda watched her progress through various social media channels from afar and when I had a chance to read one of her novels, I grabbed it.

The short version of this review is that ultimately I enjoyed it.

Longer version?

It took me a while to warm to it. I think my main problem was the cover and blurb made this seem like a really light fun read. There are aspects that are humorous but I'm not sure I'd call this a light romance. It seems more apt to say that this novel is light on comedy and heavy on delving into emotions and backstory and really looking at two writers' process when the words are flowing and there's a deadline. And there's nothing wrong with that, it just wasn't what I expected.

Once I settled into the novel, I enjoyed the back and forth between Gus and January. I enjoyed the intermingling of their writing research and their love story. Admittedly, sometimes I felt it went a little long in certain areas and Gus kinda seemed like the cliched emo guy in a romance, but I still felt satisfied by the end.

I think if I hadn't gone into this novel wanting a light read, I wouldn't have felt so disconnected from it from the start--I'm glad that I stuck with it because I definitely would like to check out more from Emily Henry.

A romance writer who no longer believes in love and a literary writer stuck in a rut engage in a summer-long challenge that may just upend everything they believe about happily ever afters.

Augustus Everett is an acclaimed author of literary fiction. January Andrews writes bestselling romance. When she pens a happily ever after, he kills off his entire cast.

They're polar opposites.

In fact, the only thing they have in common is that for the next three months, they're living in neighboring beach houses, broke, and bogged down with writer's block.

Until, one hazy evening, one thing leads to another and they strike a deal designed to force them out of their creative ruts: Augustus will spend the summer writing something happy, and January will pen the next Great American Novel. She'll take him on field trips worthy of any rom-com montage, and he'll take her to interview surviving members of a backwoods death cult (obviously). Everyone will finish a book and no one will fall in love. Really.

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