Friday, June 26, 2015

The Beginning of Everything

Author: Robyn Schneider
Info: Katherine Tegen, copyright 2013, 335 pages

Golden boy Ezra Faulkner believes everyone has a tragedy waiting for them—a single encounter after which everything that really matters will happen. His particular tragedy waited until he was primed to lose it all: in one spectacular night, a reckless driver shatters Ezra’s knee, his athletic career, and his social life.

No longer a front-runner for Homecoming King, Ezra finds himself at the table of misfits, where he encounters new girl Cassidy Thorpe. Cassidy is unlike anyone Ezra’s ever met, achingly effortless, fiercely intelligent, and determined to bring Ezra along on her endless adventures.

But as Ezra dives into his new studies, new friendships, and new love, he learns that some people, like books, are easy to misread. And now he must consider: if one’s singular tragedy has already hit and everything after it has mattered quite a bit, what happens when more misfortune strikes?

~Goodreads Description

Julia over at Stylish in the Stacks gushed about this book.  In fact she devoted an entire week blog posts to this particular title (and enviously got to interview the author a few weeks back).  This is always dangerous for a reader.  You go in with expectations.  If Julia loved it, well surely I will love it.

That cloud hung over my head while I was reading...and it didn't help that it was "assigned reading."  The first fifty pages were hard.  "You should be liking this more," the voice in my head kept chanting.      And then I started to fall in love with the characters.  It wasn't immediate.  The beginning of the story is quite the kicker, but I didn't feel attached to anyone right out the door.  Like most good relationships, it took time.  I started to figure out who Ezra was and what he was struggling with.  I started to see him change as he found himself far away from the world he knew and introduced into a strange one full of very intense debate teams and wild hotel parties.  I got to know and adore Cassidy with the mysterious sadness brewing just underneath the surface.  Both so quick witted and fast talking that anyone would thrive in their presence.

This is a story about loss and new beginnings.  It's a story about meeting old friends and appreciating that you don't have to be who you thought you were or destined to become.  It's a story about endings, goodbyes, heartache, and the journey.  It's a very well-written contemporary fiction novel, and Robyn Schneider is a unique, welcoming voice.

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