by Cece Barlow
Caney Creek Books
February 13, 2017
Blurb from Goodreads: Gin Autry must finish the last semester of high school in eclectic Austin with her hippie grandmother while Gin’s brother waits for heart surgery in Houston.
Instability reigns, but Gin uses the principles of feng shui to find balance and send positive energy to her brother. She also secretly hopes her voice-over actress dream will advance and true love will show up.
Instead, she falls for the wrong guy and clings to the wrong dream. Nothing in Gin’s life is balanced, but when death threatens her brother, she discovers true balance is about listening, compromise, and the guy in the friend zone.
Gin Autry is a control freak who paints her hair different colors and thinks that she is more open-minded than she really is, which is why her character is sometimes hard to take. She treats the sexy player, Jesus, like he’s all that and then is short and mean with nice guy, Aaron.
All of this is Gin discovering who she really is and probably surprising herself along the route. Gin is a very human mix of good and bad qualities. She can be super selfish at times and then super giving.
And I think the reason why I am focusing on character rather than story is that this is a character study to some degree: the life of a 17-year old in turmoil. I think Cece Barlow does a great job of showing Gin’s good qualities as well as her bad and having her begin to grow and adjust.
Then there are sugar gliders. I didn’t know about sugar gliders and now if only my county had them as legal, I might have a new pet. Their appearance makes a cute addition to the story.
There is a lot of quality and drama to this story which is good and I think appealing as well.
While this is a great character study and I liked how the story flowed, it showed that a lot of thought had gone into the plotting, the biggest problem was with the writing. The dialogue didn’t flow naturally and the writing seemed very simple, with little in the way of complex sentences and natural rhythm, but I don’t think that teenage ya readers would care about either of those things.
So, I highly recommend this for young ya readers
I received an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
3 butterflies and a ladybug out of 5 butterflies
Weird and Wonderful DREAM Cast! (As selected by the author.)
Weird and Wonderful is a romantic dramedy for teens. No one murders, commits suicide, or is attacked by aliens. Prepare for heartwarming feels and the weird and wonderful of everyday. Sweetness.
Gin Autry played by Britt Robertson, star of A Dog’s Purpose and Disney’s Tomorrowland.
Aaron Tremblay played by Tom Holland, the upcoming friendly neighborhood Spiderman in Spiderman: Homecoming.
Brandy Autry played by Chole Grace Moretz, star of The Fifth Wave, Kick-ass, and If I Stay.
Jesus Cruz played by Tyler Posey of Teen Wolf.
Seraph Autry played by Joey King, star of Stargirl and Independence Day: Resurgence.
Troyce Simmons played by Cole Sprouse, Jughead in Riverdale.
Mack Lee played by Lucas Till of Monster Trucks and the MacGyver remake.
Granny Mavis Lee played by Sissy Spacek, Oscar for Coal Miner’s Daughter
Dad-Will Autry–Matthew McConoughey, Oscar for Dallas Buyers Club.
Mom-Gayle Autry–Sandra Bulloch, Oscar for The Blind Side.
Nathan Autry played by any 5-8 year-old cute boy. This will be a star-making role.
Buy Link: Amazon
About the Author
Cece Barlow writes books for young adults and the young at heart. She’s a a dash of fun, mixed in with some smart cookie and a splash of capable. She started her first fan fiction group in junior high and never stopped writing. Today, she writes about girls with lofty dreams and about the absolute craziness of falling in love.
When Cece’s not writing, she curls up with a book, heads to a popcorn blockbuster, or kicks back to watch shooting stars. If she sees the moon in the daytime, she thinks she’s lucky.
Cece lives in College Station, Texas with her college sweetheart Tim and two cats – one evil and one good.
5 winners-a signed book plus a signed doodle.