Thursday, 23 May 2013

A Review for The Journals of Kara and Jason by Charlie Wood

The Journals of Kara and JasonPosted by Guest Reviewer Melanie
Release Date: May 9th, 2013
Finished Date: March 4th, 2013
Publishers: Bloomsbury
Source: For Review 
Format: Kindle
Pages: 139
Buy: Amazon UK / Amazon US

A different kind of paranormal romance.

Eighth grade is not going well for fourteen-year-old Kara Bridges. Her best friend Stace has suddenly stopped talking to her, and she is having a hard time adjusting to life without her only real friend.

Luckily for Kara, she soon meets Jason, a foreign exchange student from Europe. And though Jason is more than a little awkward, he and Kara quickly form a friendship, bonding over what it's like to feel like an outsider who doesn't belong.

However, when Jason suddenly returns four years later when Kara is a senior in high school, she realizes not everything was what it seemed. Kara's world—and the way she looks at the world—is about to change forever.

THE JOURNALS OF KARA AND JASON is a 40,000-word novel about being young, falling in love, and all the terrible, wonderful feelings that come along with it.

The Review: I just want to start off by saying this book was beautiful. It is indeed ‘A different kind of paranormal romance’ as we follow a pair of 14yr olds as they discover the value of an unconditional friendship at a time in their lives when everything is wrapped up in hormones. When we first meet Kara, she has lost her best friend and is struggling to come to terms with the why of it all. I’m sure we have all been there when we were 14 and you seem to drift away from friends towards others, as you meet new people and try to fit into what you need to be. Kara is the one left behind, she’s slightly bitter& alone until she meets Jason, a foreign exchange student being bullied by some ‘Jocks’ and steps in, creating a tentative connection between the pair. Jason is slightly odd, a bit weird, not really fitting in anywhere but with the help of Kara, he blossoms. They share a lovely friendship, building into more intense feelings that they both don’t realise are there, they’re both confused about what they feel and deal with it in typical fashion. But it’s not only about that, what they give each other is unconditional and as Jason becomes comfortable in himself and his surroundings, he also helps Kara get over the feeling she had of being friendless. They have fun, they talk, they laugh, they share something that builds into a sweet and innocent first love which is a joy to read, until Jason suddenly leaves, leaving Kara heartbroken and back to the self -doubter she was at the beginning of the book.
After a break in both journals, Kara returns 4 years later, along with Jason and we get the truth-because someone was most definitely keeping secrets. People always say ‘you never forget your first love’ and nothing could be more true for Kara & Jason but at what cost?

I don’t really read books about younger teens, I don’t think anyone would willingly revisit their early teens but honestly, I thought this book was great, it was a joy to read and I’m glad I took the chance. The relationship between our two main characters was lovely – their outlook on life, the way they grabbed it, the enthusiasm they shared, the acceptance of each other for who they are, the fun they had, the laughter and ultimately their love – was beautiful. You could feel everything they were going through, how intense those emotions are at 14, how you’re on the fence of self discovery& first love, seen through innocent eyes and a naivety that was so sweet and likable – I just loved it, if only we all still saw things from that perspective. The latter part of the book is the paranormal part, just a smidgen but just enough and we get to see how much this connection between them has changed things. It was nice twist because I was starting to wonder where that element was, I would have liked more but it fit perfectly and I wasn’t disappointed. This was a really good read that is so easy to get lost in, I know I read it in one sitting and most of it was done with a smile on my face and a good feeling in my heart…. I hope you all give this feel good book a go too. 

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