Published by Luminis Books, Inc. on October 1st 2015
Genres: Love & Romance, Young Adult
Source: ARC tour
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Sometimes Hope is the Most Extraordinary Gift of All.
High-school radio host Jasmine Torres's life is full of family dysfunction, but if she can score the internship of her dreams with a New York City radio station, she knows she can turn things around.
That is, until her brother DannyÂ’s latest seizure forces her to miss the interview, and sheÂ’s back to the endless loop of missing school for his doctor appointments, picking up the pieces of her motherÂ’s booze-soaked life, and stressing about DannyÂ’s future.
Then she meets Wes. HeÂ’s the perfect combination of smart, cute, and funny. He also happens to have epilepsy like her brother. Wes is living a normal life despite his medical issues, which gives Jasmine hope for Danny. But memories of her cheating ex-boyfriend keep her from going on a real date with Wes, no matter how many times he asks her.
Jasmine canÂ’t control everything. Not who wins the internship, not her motherÂ’s addiction, not her brotherÂ’s health--not even where her heart will lead her. She wishes she could just have an ordinary life, but maybe what she already has is pretty extraordinary after all.
It’s not everyday when Â you read a book that really surprises you the way This Ordinary Life surprised me. I’m not talking about the plot. The plot is great, but it’s not overly surprising or shocking. That’s not a bad thing, its not meant to be. What I’m talking about is more personal. IÂ meanÂ that feeling when you suddenly realize that you are loving this bookÂ andÂ you never expected to. Â I’m not much for contemporary so I expected that I would like this book but I never saw myself loving it.
Jasmine is an independent and strong teenager. She takes on much more responsibility than she should have to Â at her age. When most girls are going out after school, she takes care of her brother, Danny, who has epilepsy and her alcoholic mother. She juggles school, taking care of her family and her true love, working at her high school’s radio station. The balance is precarious and when one thing shifts, everything falls apart.Â Danny has a major seizure that lands him in the hospital, she misses an interview for her dream internship, and she walks into her boyfriend with another girl. Luckily that’s the same day she meet’s Wes.
I really identified with Jazzy. She’s a worrier. She’s spent so much time keeping everything together, she doesn’t know how to let go, even a little. I know exactly how that feels. She is the only one in her life that takes care of things. She hasn’t had anyone to take care of her in a long time. She has so much pressure placed on her to keep everything running smoothly. When things start to slide she feels like everything has fallen apart.
Wes is the opposite of Jasmine but they fit together so well. Wes was adorable! He liked Jazzy in such a sweet way. She continually insists that they are just friends and he’s ok with that, while making it clear that he wants more. My favorite part of the whole book was whenÂ View Spoiler »they went on the worst date in history. « Hide Spoiler. Wes has epilepsy too. For Jazzy, he represents the happy future that she hopes her brother will have.
I really enjoyed this book! It was such a sweet, fun read.
About the Author
Award-winning author Jennifer Walkup is most often found writing, reading, and spending time with her husband and young sons. A member of SCBWI and RWA, Jennifer also works as an editor and creative writing instructor, and is an advocate for Epilepsy awareness. This Ordinary Life is her second novel.