Title: The Unexpected Everything
Author: Morgan Matson
Age Group: Teen/Young Adult
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Star Rating: 4.5 out of 5 Stars
I borrowed this book through my local library and reviewed it.
The Unexpected Everything was the library book club pick for June, and honestly? I wasn't expecting much, and it took me a while to get invested in it. But I'm very happy that I stuck with it, because Matson weaves an equally tender and brutal coming of age tale in the tradition of Sarah Dessen. The story of Andie and her life, as well as the people who populate it, really got into my heart. I feel like I've come away from the book with a new group of friends, and everyone knows that those kinds of books are the best. I love my book club! Plus, with its summery, gorgeous cover, bright and colorful and animal-filled, I was absolutely won over. What a winner! I can't wait for more from Morgan Matson!
Alexandra Walker, better known as Andie, is not a girl who makes attachments. With her mother gone and her father more occupied with his campaign than their relationship, she thinks it's better that way. She is also someone who takes comfort in organization, in planning. But all of that is derailed when her plans for the summer suddenly go up in smoke. Forced to let go and come face to face with her demons, she realizes that instead of focusing on the past, she must learn to live in the moment.
This book was amazing. It was a coming of age story in the best kind of way, and I loved that it was set during the summer, a season that, to me, always seems full of possibilities. I also really enjoyed Andie, as well as her deep, heartbreaking character development in the book. Her friends and family created a really stark foil for her. At the end of the book, these characters felt like dear, beloved family members, who'd I'd loved with my whole heart. But my favorite part of the entire book was the romance that took center stage. I'm such a sucker for love, especially when it's the nerdy kind! (That's all I'm going to say; I don't want to give it away!) Clark was absolutely adorable, and I loved the way that he and Andie met--it was straight out of a rom-com!
The ending was kind of bittersweet, though I liked the way that it stayed true to life. It was realistic, even while it brought tears to my eyes and grief to my heart. This book was so much fun, it was like a day at the beach, basking in the sun. It felt like a hug from a trusted friend after you've just got done crying. This book was just so warm and wonderful, so sweet and full of love. The Unexpected Everything is a beautiful book, a celebration of friendship and love in every form. One of my favorite books of recent months! I cannot wait for more from Morgan Matson! The bottom line: A beautiful celebration of friendship and love, The Unexpected Everything took up a big space in my heart, and I'm so excited for more from this promising author! Next on deck: Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare!