A few months ago, my husband and I headed to Barnes and Noble on a Friday night to make lists of books that we want to read. We do this every so often and I can’t tell you how much we look forward to it, despite how dorky it may sound.
I liked the look of the cover on this one, so I picked it up and the jacket copy immediately pulled me in. Girl meets cute British boy on a plane, they spend 7 hours talking to each other and sharing secrets, then they part ways at Heathrow. What’s not to like about that? It didn’t hurt that the British boy’s name is Oliver — Oliver, guys. He goes by Ollie, of course, which is probably the most adorable thing ever. I mean, look at that cover! If that doesn’t scream Read This Cute Book About Two Teenagers in Love!, I don’t know what does.
Hadley is on her way to London for her dad’s wedding to a woman she’s never met, and Ollie (swoon) is heading… well, he doesn’t really say other than he is going to a church. They discuss Hadley’s family situation at length, share some laughs and some romantic moments, and then they lose each other in the crowd at customs.
I had really high hopes for this one, and unfortunately it did not deliver. The third-person limited narration really did NOT work for me at all. I couldn’t connect with any of the characters, all of whom were lacking in development. I actually skipped over large parts of the story because it was so long winded and tedious, especially the parts about Hadley’s relationship with her dad. She just droned on and on and on about it, and it came across as whining. We get it: your dad cheated and ruined your mom’s life, you’re angry about it, you don’t want to go to the wedding. This is re-hashed over and over again throughout the entire book and after the first couple of times, I was just done with it.
I couldn’t get behind Hadley at all. She is so self-absorbed that she never once asks Ollie what it is he’s going back to London for — she just assumes it’s for a wedding and then continues to complain to him about her own problems. Without being too spoiler-y, she throws a tantrum at the wedding and turns the whole thing around so that she is the focus, rather than her dad and his new bride (who is really quite gracious about the whole thing, by the way).
For such a short book, and such an interesting story idea, this was a huge disappointment.