Thursday, December 18, 2014

Review: Love & Other Theories by Alexis Bass

Title: Love & Other Theories
Author: Alexis Bass
Series: Stand Alone
Published By: Harper Teen (December 31, 2014)
Source: ARC Copy Provided by the Publisher (in exchange for an honest review)
Genre: YA Contemporary
My Rating: 4 Stars

Book Description:
If you want more, you have to give less.

That’s the secret to dating in high school. By giving as little as they expect to get in return, seventeen-year-old Aubrey Housing and her three best friends have made it to the second semester of their senior year heartbreak-free. And it’s all thanks to a few simple rules: don’t commit, don’t be needy, and don’t give away your heart.

So when smoking-hot Nathan Diggs transfers to Lincoln High, it shouldn’t be a big deal. At least that’s what Aubrey tells herself. But Nathan’s new-boy charm, his kindness, and his disarming honesty throw Aubrey off her game and put her in danger of breaking the most important rule of all: Don’t fall in love.











Love and Other Theories was one of my most anticipated YA contemporary reads for December and because of that I feel I need to be completely honest with this review.

While I enjoyed this read, it left me feeling sad and a little bit angry. Sad for girls who feel they need to play games and have a misconstrued idea about what love means and sad for those boys that give them those ideas and thoughts.

To be honest, I am still not exactly sure if I loved Aubrey and her friends but I do know that I loved Nathan and my heart broke for him numerous times throughout the story.

I don't think I quite have all my thoughts and feelings together over whether I liked this story or hated it.

Like I said earlier, there were parts that made me angry and parts that made me sad and very little left me smiling.

The writing was fabulous but the messages weren't always great and the girl's attitude and ideas (their theories) about dating, boys, and falling in love were worse. I wanted to shake some of them and help open their eyes to the boys that weren't worth the time and especially, to the boys that were. 

I didn't like that Brey went along with things that she shouldn't have. That she should have followed her heart so many times and didn't and because of it, hurt a lot of others along the way. 

I didn't like that this didn't end on an upbeat and happy note and...well. I really don't even now how to express how much it is possible to love a book and hate it at the same time, but there you have it. I loved this and I hated it but because of that, I still have no idea how to rate it.

How do you rate something that you both loved because of the wonderful writing and because Brey did grow up and she did change, but hated because it was so awful seeing what these girls were doing to themselves and others around them?

I honestly still don't know but I will say this, the writing was fabulous and the messages while sometimes sad, weren't all bad, they were and are a very realistic part of what it is like growing up,  a huge part of how you find out what you want, what you need,  in life, so for that this deserves four stars. 





*All thoughts and opinions are my own and were not influenced by the author or publisher. I was not compensated for this review.*

38 comments:

  1. Ugh. I can almost feel the frustration rolling off of you, Ali. Needless to say, I'm skipping this book. :/

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    1. I think I was just expecting a bit more maybe? I still don't know!

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  2. I am hearing the same thing from other blogger. The message is not so great. the drama sounds frustrating.

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    1. It was a little frustrating for sure.

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  3. I've had that experience with books before, too. This one sounded great from the description at the top, but it doesn't sound like it lives up to the promise of the premise!

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    1. Not quite but yet it does too! It is a confusing read.

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  4. It sounds like the writing was powerful enough to evoke such strong emotions in you, even if they weren't all great emotions. I'm on the fence about reading this one, I think I might get too frustrated with Aubrey and her friends and their outlook on life and love. Wonderful thoughtful review!

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    1. They were definitely the most frustrating of all. I wanted to knock some sense in to them every single chapter!

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  5. This one sounds interesting. But I can totally see where your frustrations came from. Just reading the synopsis, I was already a bit annoyed, probably because I've always been "in-it-to-win-it" when it comes to dating, meaning I never dated someone just-because or just-for-now. If I honestly couldn't see myself with the person in 5 years, I didn't do it. But obviously things have changed since I was in high school and different personalities and all that. Anyway, great review describing why you were a bit split on this one.

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  6. " Sad for girls who feel they need to play games and have a misconstrued idea about what love means and sad for those boys that give them those ideas and thoughts."

    THIS. That is exactly why I couldn't bring myself to finish this one Ali! I agree the writing was great, she has an easy, fluid style that I enjoyed, but I couldn't get past Brey and her friends warped perspectives. I know that was the point, to highlight their backward thinking, but I just couldn't handle it. Like you, it made me angry and sad.

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    1. Glad I wasn't the only one Jenny! I felt terrible for not loving it completely because the writing really was great.

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  7. Yeah I agree, it is sad that some girls feel that have to be like that, but it's probably because they've been hurt. At least there was one character you loved. :) I need my happily ever after though!

    Generally that's what my six star rating is for. I loved some parts, but hated others.

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    1. Yeah I had to rate it higher for the writing but I did want to rate it lower because of the mixed messages and the unlovable characters.

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  8. I started this book, but I had a tough time getting into it. The characters really grated on my nerves. I think it's a good idea that I stopped reading it because I don't like being left feeling angry.
    I'm glad you liked it overall! :)
    Lovely review!

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    1. Yeah the ending almost ruined it all for me I think.

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  9. Your review is so intriguing - I need to check this out asap. I'm really curious about whole dating and ideas about love you mentioned.

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    1. It really an interesting read even if it left me feeling sad.

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  10. Brilliant review. I've had a copy of this for so long but kept putting it off, I was nervous that it wouldn't live up to the expectations I had for it. But it does sound really good. But also like it might leave me torn. I DON'T KNOW. It looks good, but I'm still nervous.

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    1. Be nervous! LOL No really, it isn't a bad read, just frustrating at times and sad.

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  11. Kindlemom, what a great review. You know kids of this age can be so destructively mean and when an author is right on with that emotion it can hurt so good.
    Thanks

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    1. That is a very good point and a really true one Debbie.

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  12. I appreciate your honesty. I have read some negative reviews for this one, and I don't think I could handle it. I don't like games and girls doing things that are unnecssary to get the attention of a boy.

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    1. This one probably wouldn't' be for you Heidi. ;)

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  13. I have read some negative reviews for this one so it's nice to see a more positive one. I don't know that this book would work for me. I think I'd get super angry and frustrated with it.

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    1. I think you probably would as well Candace but it isn't all bad and it is worth the read for sure.

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  14. I appreciate your honest breakdown of this, and while the writing was fabulous I had considered this for my niece for her birthday in January..but think I want something different for her now.

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    1. I don't know how old your niece is but I would say probably not.

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  15. I hate the games teenagers play. I never put up with it when I was in HS, and it makes me mad when my girls fall for it. Games are lame. It's hard to read in a book, and watch in real life. This book sounds good though. Thanks for the review.

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    1. It is hard to see people doing it, I just never understood doing it or the benefits of why you would want to.

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  16. Yes I didn't really like Aubrey and her friends either. Actually, I really hated them for they were so mean to the other girls. I definitely see why you liked this one despite that!

    Nice review :D

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  17. Oh I didn't know about this one but it sounds interesting. It sounds also tricky to know how to feel about the characters. It's been a while since I've read a contempory YA. thanks for the review!

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    1. It was tricky because I wanted to find redeeming qualities in them all but there really weren't many to be found.

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  18. "Sad for girls who feel they need to play games and have a misconstrued idea about what love means and sad for those boys that give them those ideas and thoughts." THIS. I thought the same thing just as I was reading the synopsis, especially since the girls are still only in high school, it's a shame. I would be conflicted about this one as well, but it's nice that it talks about issues that really are part of growing up. Nice review!

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  19. Hmmm, I'm not actually convinced, having seen SO MANY negative reviews for this one, but I did enjoy your review (wow, the length of it actually surprised me lol). ;D I'm glad you enjoyed!!

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