The Beginning of Everything

Author: Robyn Schneider 
Pages: 335 
Publisher: Katherine Tegen 
Format: Paperback 
My Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars

Summary (from Goodreads): Golden boy Ezra Faulkner believes everyone has a tragedy waiting for them—a single encounter after which everything that really matters will happen. His particular tragedy waited until he was primed to lose it all: in one spectacular night, a reckless driver shatters Ezra’s knee, his athletic career, and his social life. 

No longer a front-runner for Homecoming King, Ezra finds himself at the table of misfits, where he encounters new girl Cassidy Thorpe. Cassidy is unlike anyone Ezra’s ever met, achingly effortless, fiercely intelligent, and determined to bring Ezra along on her endless adventures.  

But as Ezra dives into his new studies, new friendships, and new love, he learns that some people, like books, are easy to misread. And now he must consider: if one’s singular tragedy has already hit and everything after it has mattered quite a bit, what happens when more misfortune strikes?

My Summary: Ezra has always had the best of everything: a new car, expensive clothes. a huge house, a promising athletic career, and a beautiful girlfriend. Ezra had the rest of his life mapped out - all he had to do was nod and smile as everything fell into place.

Until a car careens through a stop sign and hits his car, leaving him crippled and hospitalized. Gone is his chance at ever playing tennis professionally, as well as everything that came with being the 'golden boy'. 

But when Ezra returns to school, he discovers that all is not lost. As he reconnects with old friends and figures out who he really is, Ezra can't help but be thankful for the chance to reclaim his life, and everything is almost perfect again.

Except that his girlfriend is hiding something - something huge. And it may have something to do with the night he lost everything. Can he discover what is it and salvage his relationship, or is his new love as doomed as his tennis career was?
My Thoughts: I had some mixed feelings about this one, although I did finish it and was interested most of the time. The writing was well done and kept me interested, but I couldn't help but feel like there were a few unnecessary cliches strewn throughout. 

Toby was my favourite character, although I wish he was a little more fleshed out. A lot of the secondary characters seemed very interesting and really added to the story. 

To me the ending felt a little bit abrupt, but I liked the message behind it. And the Gatsby parallels tied nicely into the story, but some felt a little forced. 

I liked the 'reconnecting with yourself' element - it was great to follow Ezra on his journey to figure out who he was without tennis and his popularity. I also really liked the hipster feel of Toby's group of friends.

Final Thoughts: I recommend this novel to anyone who enjoys contemporary YA and is looking for a book with a male MC.

1 comment:

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