Saturday, August 15, 2015

Book Review: The Beginning of Never by O.E. Boroni

The Beginning of Never was fun, yet infuriating. 

As the debut novel of author O.E. Boroni, I wasn't sure what to expect when I signed up to read and review this on one of the goodreads groups I am a member of. The novel itself had average ratings, and the premise did pull me in. All I knew was that it was about two people falling in love at a boarding school and that the book had a stunning cover. As a reader, I would recommend more knowing what this book isn't. 

For some reason, I had it in my head that there would be a paranormal aspect to the story and I was anticipating that reveal the whole entire book, and it never came. The Beginning of Never is marketed as "Twilight meets Eleanor and Park," Don't let that mislead you. This novel is purely contemporary and the Twilight comparisons are made because out male lead is secretive and guarded. The plot is actually about 15 year old Nora and her upcoming year at a boarding school in the UK that she has been attending for three years and the chaos that ensues when she meets Nathan, a 19 year old boy (man?) that she can't help but think about no matter how much she hates him. 

Though the book had me hooked, I couldn't help but want more. To me, Nora was extremely childish and selfish. She never really thought of other people until the second half of the book and was very "woe is me." Not only that, but her character development seemed really rushed to me. Though I love how she has matured, and she's definitely become a better person and character to read about, it seemed so quick. Right once she starts befriending Nathan she's the person who all of a sudden starts caring about things she didn't even think twice about before. The other thing that bothered me a bit is that characters would be introduced once or twice, and then would never be mentioned again, or for an extremely long time. For instance, Nora's best friend is supposed to be this girl, Carlie who lives back in the United States. However, she is only mentioned twice and then Nora seemingly forgets about her. She's never mentioned ever again in the novel, and I felt like I was told that Carlie was her best friend than shown. The same thing happened with Nora's only other friend before she met Nathan, Kate. Kate is in a couple scenes in the beginning and then she isn't mentioned for a long portion of the book until the very end. I felt like these characters weren't really needed in the novel, unfortunately.

Needless to say, there were some really great moments in the novel. Boroni does a great job of making the settings believable, and I could picture them in my head while reading about it. Another thing I appreciated was how slow-building the romance was. Yes, the attraction was there from the get go, but they didn't act on until they really knew and respected each other. I'm interested to see their dynamic in the next book, which is set thirteen years later. (Not a spoiler, it's in the synopsis. Don't kill me...please.) There were also some secondary characters that I'm really hoping to see in The Way to Never, the sequel. I definitely think I'll enjoy the second book in the series more than this, because Nora herself will be more mature now that she's in her late twenties. Even though I didn't realize it at the time that I was reading the book, I've become invested in these characters and I'm so excited to see where the next novel will take them.

The plot held onto me and never let me go. If you're looking for a whirlwind contemporary that has a great, slow romance, this is the one for you. Though there are some faults with the novel, it is definitely one that kept me entertained. Also, just look at that cover. Soooo prettyy!! I'll for sure be reading the sequel!

With that, I give this book
3 out of 5 Stars!

Have you been ever mislead by reading the synopsis? What are some great contemporaries that haven't received the spotlight they deserve? Thanks for stopping by and hope to see you again!

- Genni from Ready, Set, Read!

No comments:

Post a Comment