Hooray for YA romance that is fun to read and doesn’t make my eyes roll constantly. It did have some of the usual tropes (main character is different from all of the other girls, adults are fairly useless, rich kids hosting awesome parties), but it has enough good going for it that I didn’t mind.
Darcy is nearly 18, super smart, book-obsessed, and keeping a big secret: the single mom that raised her after her father left their volatile relationship before her birth is a hoarder. Darcy’s best friend Marisol is the only person that has been to her apartment, and Darcy is worried the new building manager will see the mess and kick them out. She’s worried about children’s services finding out and taking her from her mom, and works to help pay expenses since so much of her mom’s money goes to shopping and hoarding. Darcy has never been kissed and lives inside her books and stories. One day, a damaged boy walks into the bookstore where she works, and things start to change.
Things that I love about this book:
Darcy is great. She’s the kind of extreme bookish that I can appreciate, she’s practically a genius, and she has excellent taste in books (if I do say so myself). She’s a little dramatic and whiny at times, but I was that way at 18, too. And for a little while last Tuesday, and many other times in between, so I’m ok with that. 😂
Marisol is the best kind of literary supporting character. She’s fully developed as a character and a perfect compliment to Darcy. She adds to the story, and isn’t just filler.
The family dynamics between Darcy, her mom Andrea, and her maternal grandmother are really nicely addressed, and the treatment of Andrea’s mental illness is well done.
Asher is a fantastic first-love sort of character. He’s got his own issues, but manages to be sweet and hot and perfect anyway.
Books galore! Darcy was named for Pride and Prejudice, and there are references galore to Austen, Jane Eyre, Shakespeare, Dickens and more. I especially loved the way the author treated and incorporated Barrie’s Peter Pan.
All of the good about this book far outweighs the eyerolls caused by the minor uses of tired YA cliches. A sweet read that I definitely recommend to anyone who likes YA contemporary romance.
Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for my copy in exchange for an honest review.