AUTHOR: Lindsay Paige
RATING: 4 STARS
PUBLISHED: November 2011- Lindsay Paige
SERIES: Yes; Series Still in Progress:
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"Emily wished she was invisible. But after moving to a new town with her dad, a charming boy makes it impossible for her to disappear. Despite her feelings of unworthiness, Emily soon finds herself drawn to the safety of Jake's world.
Good looking and the star of the hockey team, Jake has a lot going for him. What most people don't see is the difficult life he has at home. When quiet Emily steals his heart, Jake vows to help her discover she is worthy of love.
Just when the two of them realize the sweetness of their relationship, they are put to the test. Only together can they overcome their haunted pasts to fight for a future together."
Sweetness, the first novel in the Bold As Love series by Lindsay Paige, was pretty short, but oh so SWEET! Told from both Emily and Jake's perspectives, this novel was the perfect introduction to Jake and Emily's characters. I learned about their background, their home lives, their fears, and their dreams. I discovered what makes them tick, what makes them scared, and what makes them smile. I learned about who they were and who they are. I fell in love with Jake and Emily because they are not only relatable, but also extremely likable.
Right before I read Sweetness, I read another young adult novel, by a different author, about characters with very similar home lives and challenges. I couldn't specifically pinpoint what my deal was with that novel, but I had a hard time connecting and relating with the characters and the story line. That definitely wasn't the case in this novel.
From the very beginning of this novel, I connected with Emily and Jake because they are REAL. Everything about the two high school students felt authentic: their struggles, their reactions, their hopes, their dreams, and their fears. They are two teens who are mature beyond their years because of the real-life challenges they face at home. Emily is a loner. She used to be an outgoing "normal" teen with lots of friends, but her mother's verbal abuse and disturbing actions turned Emily into a shy, introverted girl who believes she is unworthy and unlovable. Starting over in a new town with her father was supposed to help Emily heal, but her mother's hateful words still stream on repeat in her head. Jake, on the other hand, is outgoing and popular; he is the star of the hockey team. From the outside, his life looks perfect, but things at home are far from perfect. Jake is raising his younger brother Drake all on his own, because his alcoholic father can barely take care of himself, much less anyone else. Emily and Jake enter each other lives when they are paired together for an at-home project. Over time they become friends, and eventually they realize that they may be able to lean on someone else for a change.Their lives aren't easy, but they develop a strong friendship full of love, support, and understanding. I've never been in Emily or Jake's shoes, but I empathized and related with them.
I gave Sweetness (Bold As Love #1) by Lindsay Paige 4 STARS. I strongly recommend this novel to young adults. It's an emotional story filled with charming characters that are impossible to resist. Sweetness was a great introduction to a fabulous series for young adults, and I can't wait to get started on I'm Yours (Bold As Love #2).
- The Bold as Love series is going to be a nine-book series.
- Lindsay Paige is a high school senior!