Review for ‘What Light’ by Jay Asher
Release Date: 10/18/2016
Synopsis: “Sierra’s family runs a Christmas tree farm in Oregon—it’s a bucolic setting for a girl to grow up in, except that every year, they pack up and move to California to set up their Christmas tree lot for the season. So Sierra lives two lives: her life in Oregon and her life at Christmas. And leaving one always means missing the other.
Until this particular Christmas, when Sierra meets Caleb, and one life eclipses the other.
By reputation, Caleb is not your perfect guy: years ago, he made an enormous mistake and has been paying for it ever since. But Sierra sees beyond Caleb’s past and becomes determined to help him find forgiveness and, maybe, redemption. As disapproval, misconceptions, and suspicions swirl around them, Caleb and Sierra discover the one thing that transcends all else: true love.
What Light is a love story that’s moving and life-affirming and completely unforgettable.”
The Review: I was trying to get into the holiday spirit this season, so I grabbed this book off of the shelf at Target (Woo! 20% off!) because the cover was gorgeous and had twinkly Christmas lights. Turns out, I ended up getting ridiculously busy and didn’t get a chance to read it until now. Luckily its still cold enough outside that to be a good environment for reading a Christmasy-themed story.This one was written by a male author but told from the view point of a teenage girl, which was actually a refreshing change for me when reading a romantic book. There are some tense moments, which is to be expected if you have read the synopsis (I mean, Caleb is carrying around some baggage! Dun dun dun.) but I liked that they de-escalated pretty quickly. I’ve found that in other YA Contemporary Romance books, something reallllyyy dramatic can happen and it will be a heartbreaking, 8 chapter disaster that causes me actual stress 😛 Thankfully, the author doesn’t do it to us with this one. I’d like to think that Sierra, her family, her friends, and all of the other random townsfolk that we meet in this story behave very realistically and how I would expect ‘real life’ people to behave (meaning, if you are looking for evil villains and loads of drama bombs, look elsewhere). All of that being said, this book read quickly for me. It only took me 2 days total to finish, and I wasn’t even binge reading it. So, that’s something else to consider if you have a plane ride or some other sort of time you need to kill- this one would be good for that. I liked that the romance was believable, although I do have to say things do move pretty quickly with Sierra and Caleb. If only it were that easy to establish a relationship in the real world. *sigh* They have a sweet connection and everything stays PG rated. Now, without posting spoilers I would like to touch on the ‘big secret from Caleb’s past’. It was a little weird and a little lamesauce. However, it ended up being believable and didn’t cause as much of an issue as I thought it would. In fact, I’d say the biggest issue in the entire book is what is going to happen when Sierra has to leave to head home after the winter is over. I appreciated the resolution at the ending…it gave me enough closure, but some hope for a sequel too.
The Conclusion: Read this if you’re into: A sweet romance, a main character who has healthy relationships with family and friends, and very little stress in a story-line.
Don’t read this if you can’t stand: Contemporary romance, quick and simple content without intense drama, or holiday themes.
The Rating: A jolly 4 out of 5 stars because Sierra was a solid, down to earth female lead and Caleb was a sweet male character. I also liked how friendly and normal the author made all of the supporting characters in this book.
My Spoiler for This Book: Coming Soon.
Author’s Goodreads Page: Jay Asher Goodreads