I'm trying to get back on track with writing! :)
Author: Kasie West
Title: P.S. I Like You
Release date: 26th of July 2016
Reading level: FICTION – JUVENILE: Romance, Contemporary, YA
Published by: Point
Pages: 336 in Kindle e-book format
Source: Bought from Amazon.com for Kindle
Signed, sealed, delivered...
While spacing out in Chemistry class, Lily scribbles some of her favorite song lyrics onto her desk. The next day, she finds that someone has continued the lyrics on the desk, and added a message to her. Intrigue!
Soon, Lily and her anonymous pen pal are exchanging full-on letters -- sharing secrets, recommending bands, and opening up to each other. Lily realizes she's kind of falling for this letter writer. Only who is he? As Lily attempts to unravel the mystery, and juggle school, friends, crushes, and her crazy family, she discovers that matters of the heart can't always be spelled out...
Kasie West brings irresistible wit, warmth, and sparkle to this swoon-worthy story of love showing up when you least expect it.
I like Kasie West's books! I'm not even going to deny it. They're perfect for a light, cute and fluffy read with likable and distinct characters, some decent humor and a specific type of charm. Yes, of course, they possess their fair share of cliches and annoying factors, but I don't mind as much, because the stories don't pretend to be über smart, innovative, brilliantly crafted or anything but an easily digestible high school romance. The tropes, most times, are things you have already read about a million times somewhere else or altogether just sound like your typical fanfiction. As is the case with the current story, where two people fall in love via notes shared in class. The couple, at first, seeming very unlikely as well. Still, the whole combination works, and works really nicely, because it doesn't try to be something it's not.
There is something nostalgically romantic about exchanging notes or writing to someone instead of texting, e-mail sending, tweeting or all the other last decade (or two) pop-ups. My generation used to do it manually all the time. We shared written messages in class and didn't use our technical devices (I was the first to have a mobile phone in my class in middle school!). So, as dated as it seems, I really appreciated how two people "met" and shared thoughts via paper and pen. It kind of gave depth to the romance. Regarding who the mystery partner was, well, there is actually no surprise there and if you hadn't figured it out right from the start, then I'd say you were accidentally reading another book entirely, with the same title. It's not exciting, but was it supposed to be? I don't think so. A secret to the main character isn't always meant to be one for the reader. Instead, I enjoyed following Lily with her figuring out who the elusive pen-pal was. It was just as satisfying, if somewhat predictable, as trying to find it out myself. I was annoyed, however, by the other distracting guys, who were in my eyes more nuisances than characters to make the waters murky.
I also liked the main couple and, even before they figured it out, they had some great scenes together. There was definitely a spark there with quite a bit of chemistry. I also adore love-hate relationships in romance, because they actually enable development and exclude the, oh so typical, you're-hot-I-want-you cliche! The two also reminded me of Elizabeth and Darcy with the slight parallels to them being victims of pride and prejudice (or don't judge a book by it's cover). I, however, wasn't really a fan of them connecting via their music taste or music in general. The lyric stuff left me completely cold, maybe because I'm more about the melody in songs than the words. I wasn't wild about the letters focusing heavily on lyrics, but, hey, it's something that gets them on the same wavelength, so why not.
The heroine, Lily had a very odd-ball, loud and overcrowded family life. I'm usually slightly irritated by annoying siblings and wacky parents in too big portions in my YA romance, but for some reason, the whole band of quirky characters was quite endearing and added color to the story and Lily's life and personality. Though, them being convenient in some aspects in her getting together with her pen-pal, were hard to miss, I really didn't mind. I also always find it odd when main characters in YA only have one friend, as is with the case with Lily, but I guess it's just another trope and stops the plot from getting too packed with people. All in all, I really liked the characters Lily was being surrounded by and the guy she ended up smooching so swoonily in a dark classroom (so hot!). Also, even though at times she was too forcibly artistic, it was extremely effortless to cheer for Lily.