Grace Welles had resigned herself to the particular loneliness of being fifteen and stuck at a third-tier boarding school in the swamps of Florida, when she accidentally saves the new kid in her class from being beat up. With a single aim of a slingshot, the monotonous mathematics of her life are obliterated forever…because now there is this boy she never asked for. Wade Scholfield.
With Wade, Grace discovers a new way to exist. School rules are optional, life is bizarrely perfect, and conversations about wormholes can lead to make-out sessions that disrupt any logical stream of thoughts.
So why does Grace crush Wade’s heart into a million tiny pieces? And what are her options when she finally realizes that 1. The universe doesn’t revolve around her, and 2. Wade has been hiding a dark secret. Is Grace the only person unhinged enough to save him?
Acidly funny and compulsively readable, Mercedes Helnwein’s debut novel Slingshot is a story about two people finding each other and then screwing it all up. See also: soulmate, friendship, stupidity, sex, bad poetry, and all the indignities of being in love for the first time.
Release Date: April 27th, 2021
*I received a copy of this book in return for an honest review! Thanks to Wednesday Books for the opportunity!*
I am torn with how I feel about this book. Slingshot is a grittier YA rom-com. It was a super easy read, full of wit and complicated situations, and it does a great job of exploring teenage emotions and experiences. I just don’t know if I liked Gracie. She is super sarcastic and tough with a mouth like a sailor. Her inner monologues could be really funny, and I loved that I could see through this tough front she put up to the world into her softer insides. Teenage emotions are intense and sometimes their reactions are irrational- I totally feel that and can relate. However; Gracie took this to a new level. So much so, that I found it hard to empathize with her and found some of her actions appalling. With all that said, even though I didn’t really like her, she intrigued me and I was definitely drawn into her story. She goes through a lot in this book from heartbreak, to losing her virginity, to learning how to be a friend, to discovering what love is, to dealing with family drama, to peer pressure, bad advice, and popularity, all while trying to figure out who she wants to be. Her relationship with Wade, who is awesome, was very sweet and they had fantastic banter. Seeing the passionate intensity of these two teenagers discovering first love together was endearing, and I loved seeing the effects it had on Gracie’s life. Slingshot surprised me in a bunch of different ways, and it left me with a strong bitter-sweet feeling that still kind of lingers days later.
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