*We received this book in exchange for an honest review.*
When Josie Saint-Martin returns to her childhood home of Beauty, Rhode Island, she intends on only sticking around for a year. After all, a year seems like a long time when you’ve been moving from city to city with your mom for the better part of your childhood. Beauty may not be so bad this time around: Josie’s crazy grandma, Deirdre, has moved to Nepal for a one-year tour with the Peace Corps, and Josie plans on snagging a summer internship at Beauty’s premier magazine to boost her photography resume. The internship is Josie’s one-way ticket out of town before her grandma comes home and instigates World War III between the Saint-Martin women. Josie’s hoping her photographs will wow her famous photographer into giving her an apprenticeship at his fancy LA studio.
Too bad the Saint-Martin women are cursed.
Just when she starts to doubt the curse, she runs into her former (and hot) childhood best friend Lucky Karras, who suddenly has turned into an outsider, rebel, and the town’s resident “bad boy.” When family secrets come to light at an ill-fated party, Josie sets out on a revenge plot that goes awry— with Lucky taking the fall.
Desperate to figure out why Lucky covered for her, Josie devises elaborate plots to repay him. As the two grow closer, they realize that their friendship (and chemistry) may not be just platonic. But with Josie planning to leave in a year, the clock is ticking. Will Josie finally break down Lucky’s invisible wall?
Chasing Lucky was an adorable YA Contemporary! This book is exactly what one would expect from Jenn Bennett, who wrote one of our fave contemporaries, Alex, Approximately. We admit, while we were not the biggest fans of her last contemporary, Serious Moonlight, this book was excellent! In true Bennett form, the characters were well-developed and had big personalities. Josie and the Saint-Martin women were a little crazy, but in the best way possible. All of them were truly unique and we enjoyed seeing them grow closer over the course of the book— despite the Saint Martin curse!
Bennett also always writes complex family dynamics. Josie went through a lot with her absent father and her mother’s constant desire to move. But, Josie learns a lot better herself during the summer and some long hidden family secrets come out.
Now, let’s talk romance. First of all, Lucky was H.O.T. Claire has a thing for the bad boy trope and he definitely did not disappoint. Bennett is the Queen of YA banter and Lucky and Josie were no exception! Their chemistry was strong and we enjoyed how their relationship did not develop too quickly. One of our pet peeves is when characters with a past fall into a relationship 100 pages in. Instead, Josie and Lucky spent a good portion of the book reconnecting, with Josie really trying to break down Lucky’s mysterious persona. In the end, we find out why Lucky is guarded and took the fall for Josie after the revenge incident.
Lucky’s large Greek family also added to the story. Can we be invited to their Sunday dinners? We love Greek food!
We really enjoyed that this book was set in New England. Christy has close ties to the region and we like that Bennett switches up the settings of her YA contemporaries!
The only reason that we cannot give this book five stars is because nothing will come close to Alex, Approximately in our hearts. But, we will say that out of Bennett’s published contemporaries, this book comes the closest. Definitely give it a read! Mark your calendars, this book will be released on November 10, 2020.