Monday, November 11, 2013

Review: How To Love by Katie Cotugno

How to Love Before: Reena Montero has loved Sawyer LeGrande for as long as she can remember: as natural as breathing, as endless as time. But he’s never seemed to notice that Reena even exists…until one day, impossibly, he does. Reena and Sawyer fall in messy, complicated love. But then Sawyer disappears from their humid Florida town without a word, leaving a devastated—and pregnant—Reena behind.

After: Almost three years have passed, and there’s a new love in Reena’s life: her daughter, Hannah. Reena’s gotten used to being without Sawyer, and she’s finally getting the hang of this strange, unexpected life. But just as swiftly and suddenly as he disappeared, Sawyer turns up again. Reena doesn’t want anything to do with him, though she’d be lying if she said Sawyer’s being back wasn’t stirring something in her. After everything that’s happened, can Reena really let herself love Sawyer LeGrande again?

In this breathtaking debut, Katie Cotugno weaves together the story of one couple falling in love—twice.

My Review:

I bought this book as soon as it came out, and I scheduled a buddy read for it on a Goodreads group.  As soon as the buddy read date arrived, I dove into this book.  And I absolutely loved this book.  The story and the characters are so amazing.  I kept on reading more of this book whenever I had the time.  


Reena's character is very well-written in both timelines.  In the Before timeline, she is a high school student who is working on graduating early and applying to college.  She wants to travel, and she wants to get out of the town where she has lived for her entire life.  In the After timeline, Reena has a rocky relationship with her dad, and she is raising her daughter, Hannah.  She has taken responsibility for her pregnancy by raising her kid.  

Sawyer is also a good character, one who does some not so good things but also has some reasons of his own for acting the ways that he does.  What happened to Allie has obviously affected him, enough to hurt some of his other relationships.  He does run away, but you find out some things about his running away that makes it not as bad.  Also, he makes a good point when he says that Reena was going to leave him for college anyway.  Sawyer was not the best influence to Reena when it came to him convincing her to skip school to be with him, but he is a good guy at heart.  When he found out he had a daughter, he definitely wanted to step up and be a father to her.  He did not want to just ignore her and pretend she did not exist.  He still wanted to be with Reena too because he loved her.

Reena's relationships with several other characters aside from Sawyer are well portrayed in this novel.  Her dad has not really been there for her since she got pregnant.  He was so disappointed in her that he called her awful names and would not forgive her.  Reena's stepmom, Soledad, was still disappointed, but she was much better about Reena's pregnancy than Reena's dad.    In the beginning of the After chapters, Reena was dating a guy named Aaron, who was the brother of her best friend, Shelby.  Shelby was a good friend to Reena, and she was always there for her, except for when they fought a bit.  I knew that Reena couldn't stay with Aaron because it wouldn't be fair to him when she was still in love with Sawyer.  Allie was Reena's best friend in the Before timeline who died in a car accident.  She had been in a fight with Reena at the time of her death because she started dating Sawyer despite knowing that Reena had liked him for years.  That pretty much ruined their friendship.

If you like YA contemporary, read this book.


No comments:

Post a Comment