Publisher: Simon Schuster Books for Young Readers
Published: June 5th, 2018
Genres: YA contemporary, Romance
My Rating: 3 Stars
Charlie Grant’s older sister is getting married this weekend at their family home, and Charlie can’t wait—for the first time in years, all four of her older siblings will be under one roof. Charlie is desperate for one last perfect weekend, before the house is sold and everything changes. The house will be filled with jokes and games and laughs again. Making decisions about things like what college to attend and reuniting with longstanding crush Jesse Foster—all that can wait. She wants to focus on making the weekend perfect.
The only problem? The weekend is shaping up to be an absolute disaster.
There’s the unexpected dog with a penchant for howling, house alarm that won’t stop going off, and a papergirl with a grudge.
There are the relatives who aren’t speaking, the (awful) girl her favorite brother brought home unannounced, and a missing tuxedo.
Not to mention the neighbor who seems to be bent on sabotage and a storm that is bent on drenching everything. The justice of the peace is missing. The band will only play covers. The guests are all crazy. And the wedding planner’s nephew is unexpectedly, distractingly…cute.
Over the course of three ridiculously chaotic days, Charlie will learn more than she ever expected about the family she thought she knew by heart. And she’ll realize that sometimes, trying to keep everything like it was in the past means missing out on the future.
Firstly, this is a perfectly good book that I’m sure most people will love. It’s well written and funny. However, for me personally, it messed with my anxiety a lot and for that, it gets a lower star score than it probably deserves. Weddings are stressful to start with, and just so much is happening in this book, which feels real as a person who has been a bridesmaid, I felt the stress of the things going wrong, which I guess speaks to how well this book is written, but for me, it was a bit much.
I found Charlie a relatable, genuinely funny narrator. I didn’t really understand why she kept taking all the obligations, like why it was her responsibility to make sure things went smoothly, but I’m sure that’s just a wedding thing that I don’t get. When I was a bridesmaid my job was to make sure our bride stopped trying to help with everything and put her dress on.
I liked the different subplots going on at the same time, I was able to figure out one of the “twists” toward the end pretty early on, but when it was revealed the emotional impact was still there. It was one of those books where I could tell what was going to happen, but when it was spelled out in a reveal, it didn’t feel like the story was overly predictable, I hope that makes sense, like I knew things were going to happen because of the kind of story it was, but it was presented in a way that still made every plot point interesting.
I’m not from a big immediate family, but I have about 645 cousins. (Not really, there’s 10 of us.) So I kind of get the chaos of a big family. When we’re all together it’s drama and excitement. All of us aren’t together very often so when we all end up in the same place, it’s an adventure. Things happen when we’re all together that would never happen if we weren’t in some cousin groupthink situation. It’s fun, it’s crazy, and I totally get that controlled chaos that’s presented in the book.
One of my cousins recently got married and we had a pool going around about what weird/obnoxious things were going to happen. I felt like Linnie and Rodney’s wedding could have benefited from something like that. Five bucks on if Aunt Liz and Uncle Jimmy start an actual fist fight. Ten bucks Uncle Stu starts stuffing food in his pockets to save for later. That kind of thing, it may have reduced some of the stress of the whole thing.
Overall, I think that people how like funny, light-hearted, romance driven stories will like this book. I did enjoy it overall, it was just a lot for me with all the things happening and Charlie feeling like she had to fix it all. My anxiety doesn’t enjoy that kind of thing. I would recommend picking this up if you aren’t easily overwhelmed by minor inconveniences happening to fictional people in a high-stress situation.
Until next time Internet,