Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Review: The Secret Year by Jennifer R. Hubbard

Title: The Secret Year
Author: Jennifer R. Hubbard
Series: N/A
Format: Hardcover (192 pages)
Release Date: January 7, 2010
Genre(s): YA, Realistic Fiction, Romance, Drama




Take Romeo and Juliet. Add The Outsiders. Mix thoroughly. Colt and Julia were secretly together for an entire year and no one, not even Julia's boyfriend knew. They had nothing in common, with Julia in her country club world on Black Mountain and Colt from down on the flats, but it never mattered. Until Julia dies in a car accident, and Colt learns the price of secrecy. He can't mourn Julia openly, and he's tormented that he might have played a part in her death. When Julia's journal ends up in his hands, Colt relives their year together at the same time that he's desperately trying to forget her. But how do you get over someone who was never yours in the first place? Source


Plot: I was glad to get away from paranormal romance for a little bit and give this book a try. The story is set in a small town where there are the people on Black Mountain (rich and popular) and the people who are not (middle class/poor and not as popular). I was a little disappointed about the plot because it seemed like a "been there, done that" plot, but I was willing to give it a try. At first, it was interesting to see how Colt got along after Julia's death and how many of her loved ones didn't know about him. I will say that one family member finds out and it is interesting to see their interaction. Colt is hesitant to reveal who he was to Julia while that family member is just trying to find out facts. But, as the story progressed, it felt like Colt didn't want to get over Julia. It seemed as though no matter what happened or who he met, it was like Julia was a hanging thread to him. What I hated the most was it started to seem one sided. When i was reading the flashbacks and then reading the present, it seemed like Colt might have taken more out of it then he should have.

Character(s): Colt and Julia - I'm putting them together because this is how I think Colt keeps thinking throughout the book. It seemed like he couldn't give up that Julia was gone or that he needed to move on. Needless to say, he doesn't develop much with his obsession and when it seems like he does, it just seems like he just wants to find something else to take his mind off of Julia. I couldn't grasp that aspect and is only my real adversion to the book.

Cover: The book has a simple cover, which is what really drew me in. It looked a little mysterious and actually had models who looked like the characters. The simplicity of it is what truly makes it an interesting cover.

Closing Thoughts: I am giving this book a three out of four because I truly did like the book, it was just the characters who were fustrating. I always say development is key to characters, but in this instance, I could say it is refreshing...and fustrating. It gets you thinking about if the author did it on purpose because it is realistic fiction and it could be that he truly doesn't or want to get over Julia. But it is a very intriguing read for those who want something different.

Where to find Jennifer:

Peace and Fangs,

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