Overall Rating: 5 Stars
Title: Beach Read
Author: Emily Henry
Format: ARC received in exchange for an honest review from Netgalley, hardcover purchased from Book of the Month.
Release Date: May 19, 2020
A romance writer who no longer believes in love and a literary writer stuck in a rut engage in a summer-long challenge that may just upend everything they believe about happily ever afters.
Augustus Everett is an acclaimed author of literary fiction. January Andrews writes bestselling romance. When she pens a happily ever after, he kills off his entire cast.
They’re polar opposites.
In fact, the only thing they have in common is that for the next three months, they’re living in neighboring beach houses, broke, and bogged down with writer’s block.
Until, one hazy evening, one thing leads to another and they strike a deal designed to force them out of their creative ruts: Augustus will spend the summer writing something happy, and January will pen the next Great American Novel. She’ll take him on field trips worthy of any rom-com montage, and he’ll take her to interview surviving members of a backwoods death cult (obviously). Everyone will finish a book and no one will fall in love. Really.
There are two key indicators that I loved this book:
1. I unconsciously disobeyed the laws of a pandemic and found myself constantly touching my face – pressing my hand over my mouth to hold in gasps of surprise and sighs of happiness.
2. I sat staring blankly at the pages after certain scenes, trying to pinpoint what exactly it was making the butterflies swarm in my belly.
Beach Read, I feel, will be my new recommendation for people who like Women’s Fiction and find they want to get into romance. To me, I think this book could easily be categorized as both.
The “deep dive into everyday, angsty life” aspect felt very Women’s Fiction-y, but the romance was one of the strongest elements of this story… and it helps that it was done really well.
Also… the humor in this had me snorting out loud so many times. The one-liners in this book were on point. I had to keep a pen with me anytime I picked up this book so that I could underline my favorite parts.
Let’s talk about the romance because I realized a few things.
This book had two key elements that many of my favorite romance novels have: pining and longing. Extra points for when one of the love interests has no idea those two things are going on.
This. This is exactly how I want to feel when I read a romance novel. I want to feel giddy and excited and hopeful. I also like feeling as though I went through something to get there. That I earned it.
Beach Read was all of those things. The hype surrounding this book is well deserved.
Butterfly Rating: 4 Stars
Re-read Worthiness: Yes!
Bookshelf Placement: Yes!
Book Boyfriend Rating: 4 stars