I received this book for free from Publisher, Simon and Schuster in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Save the Date by Morgan Matson
Published by Simon and Schuster on June 5, 2018
Genres: Young Adult Fiction, Family, Siblings, Social Themes, Dating & Sex, Friendship
Source: Publisher, Simon and Schuster
Amazon // The Book Depository
Father of the Bride meets Sixteen Candles in the latest novel from New York Times bestselling author Morgan Matson.
Charlie Grant’s older sister is getting married this weekend at their family home, and Charlie can’t wait—for the first time in years, all four of her older siblings will be under one roof. Charlie is desperate for one last perfect weekend, before the house is sold and everything changes. The house will be filled with jokes and games and laughs again. Making decisions about things like what college to attend and reuniting with longstanding crush Jesse Foster—all that can wait. She wants to focus on making the weekend perfect.
The only problem? The weekend is shaping up to be an absolute disaster.
There’s the unexpected dog with a penchant for howling, house alarm that won’t stop going off, and a papergirl with a grudge.
There are the relatives who aren’t speaking, the (awful) girl her favorite brother brought home unannounced, and a missing tuxedo.
Not to mention the neighbor who seems to be bent on sabotage and a storm that is bent on drenching everything. The justice of the peace is missing. The band will only play covers. The guests are all crazy. And the wedding planner’s nephew is unexpectedly, distractingly…cute.
Over the course of three ridiculously chaotic days, Charlie will learn more than she ever expected about the family she thought she knew by heart. And she’ll realize that sometimes, trying to keep everything like it was in the past means missing out on the future.
Save the Date was a mess – in the sense that there’s a lot going on. the story is set in a span of three days and sometimes it feels like there’s so much craze that there isn’t time to ~really~ get into anything. the first 80% almost felt like one thing after another after another; i had a hard time connecting with all the characters and relationships.
i usually love morgan matson’s frustrating/cringey characters, but Charlie is so!! frustrating!!! for the most part of the book, she’s surprised/snappy when things don’t go as planned – which is understandable considering the stress from the things going on. the main reason for my disliking is one i know morgan matson intentionally put there. (it’s hard to explain without spoilers) but still, it just made me feel ://// ʷʰʸ ??? AT THE VERY END, she gets better and ~changes~.
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the whole arc of her character revolves around Charlie glamourizing her family and relationships (echm Jesse, which i have THOUGHTS about later) and this!!!!! is the main reason why i didn’t like her. sometimes she gets so obviously blind, i just want to smack her head. and i love love LOVE the ending when she realizes ~all the things~. i know that’s the main point of her character (the glamourizing) and it’s not meant to be enjoyable, but i was reeeeeally frustrated at her.
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however, the ~realization part~ took SO LONG to get to – and was short lived. i wanted more of the end and less of the middle. if the pacing were a bit different, i think i would’ve enjoyed this novel much more.
now let’s talk about the romance. SO. there’s a love triangle. ish. and it made me want to scReam. i’m not a fan of love triangles, with the exception of very very rare occasions. yeah, this was… no. i missed morgan matson’s usual awkward and fumbly relationships. TECHNICALLY, there was one, but it was so small it almost felt like friendship (which is okay?? but i wanted more????). and the end wrapped up kinda nicely (it was a little more than friendship?) BUT I WANTED MORE. in terms of platonic relationships, i really enjoyed the family. they’re complicated and busy and unexpected and SO WONDERFUL. Charlie has a best friend, but she’s pretty much non-existent for the entire book. i wish we got deeper into all the different relationships (aka romantic and friendship). I JUST WANTED MORE.
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so I HATED JESSE right from the beginning. he seemed like the awful douche he was but Charlie was too blind by her crush to realize it but THE FRUSTRATION. I CAN’T DEAL.
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it sounds like i hated this book, but i actually really liked it. i loved the writing; i loved how natural and funny it was; i loved craze and adventures. and weirdly enough, i even like some of the things i said i DIDN’T like about it. i liked how it was frustrating because life is frustrating. even though Save the Date wasn’t what i’d imagined, i still had a joy reading it. (although, yeah, at times, i wanted to throw it out the window.)