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Last Year's Mistake by Gina Ciocca

Saturday, January 09, 2016 Geraldine 0 Comments

The Breakdown

General Info:
     Title: Last Year's Mistake
     Author: Gina Ciocca
     Genre: YA Contemporary
     Publisher: Simon Pulse

          - The writing - really kept me hooked, was easy to read, flowed well
          - The flashbacks were spectacular - built to the suspense

    Things that could have been better:
         - Some characters were 2D
         - Cheesy lines 

Rating: 4 stars
Goodreads | Amazon

Initial Thoughts

I picked up this book, a bit hesitant about starting a contemporary YA romance novel, after having finally finished with all the high school drama. The synopsis really intrigued me though...and I was rewarded for picking up this book!

Before: Kelsey and David became best friends the summer before freshman year and were inseparable ever after. Until the night a misunderstanding turned Kelsey into the school joke, and everything around her crumbled—including her friendship with David. So when Kelsey's parents decided to move away, she couldn't wait to start over and leave the past behind. Except, David wasn't ready to let her go... 
 After: Now it's senior year and Kelsey has a new group of friends, genuine popularity, and a hot boyfriend. Her life is perfect. That is, until David's family moves to town and he shakes up everything. Soon old feelings bubble to the surface and threaten to destroy Kelsey's second chance at happiness. The more time she spends with David, the more she realizes she never truly let him go. And maybe she never wants to. 
Told in alternating sections, LAST YEAR'S MISTAKE is a charming and romantic debut about loving, leaving, and letting go.

The Writing Style Blew Me Away

Firstly, can I just Gina Ciocca wrote so well! Before I knew it, I was immersed into Kelsey's life. I never felt confused as I read the book, because the writing style just hooked me in, and Ciocca made sure to include relevant information only. I loved how she didn't bore me with unnecessary information - I savoured every word that Ciocca wrote as a result! 

Flashbacks Built The Suspense

The alternating time periods really worked for this book. As Kelsey's senior year progressed and new events with David happened, there were always flashbacks to explain why each event was so important. At times, the flashbacks would abruptly cut, and leave me for more - such as when Kelsey revealed that something was medically wrong with her. Sometimes, alternating storylines don't work out well - but that's certainly not the case in this novel! 

The Minor Things That Could Have Been Better

Although I really liked the book, I couldn't help but be a bit let down by Isabel Rose as an antagonist in the book. To me, she was cast as the stereotypical 'jealous girl', and her actions in the book reflected that. Same with Ryan. From the very start of the book, you could tell that Ryan was the boyfriend who wouldn't last. Another aspect of the book that probably could be improved upon would be the cheesy lines - during high school, I never heard people saying things like "majorly" and calling people nicknames like "Candle Wax" (maybe it's just because I went to school in Australia and not the US?). Apart from these small things though, I loved the book!

Final Thoughts

All in all, I really loved reading Last Year's Mistake.It was sweet and a fun read that gave me tingly feels ^_^ The only reason why I'd give it 4 stars instead of 5 is because it's not a read that changed my life. or spoke to me on a really deep level. A stunning debut novel that really shows off Gina Ciocca's beautiful writing style! 

Keep reading and loving books!

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