April 10, 2014

Latest Read: Love and Chaos by Gemma Burgess

Here are the basics ...
Love and Chaos (Brooklyn Girls #2) by Gemma Burgess
Publication date: Feb. 25, 2014
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Category: New Adult - Contemporary
Source: From Alexa (Thanks!)
Summary: Wild child and secret romantic Angie wakes up in a hotel room with $3,000 and no memories of the night before. Her best friends aren’t talking to her, she can’t get a job in fashion, her parents are divorcing, and she’s about to turn twenty-three. And life is about to get much worse. On a journey from yacht parties to dirty subways and hipster bars, flash floods, and retail jobs from hell, Angie discovers who she is, what she wants, how she’s going to get it —and a crazy little thing called true love. Meanwhile, her roommates lives are imploding, too. Coco’s self-medicating and self-loathing, Pia’s breaking up and cracking up, Madeleine’s finding her voice and Julia might—just might—have met someone she can actually date. (Adapted goodreads.com)

The good
Love and Chaos reunites us with the five fun and unique friends of the Brooklyn Girls and this time, we're treated to Angie's point-of-view. She's the wild child of the bunch. Drinking, partying, plenty of guys. Then one night she wakes up in a hotel room alone, with $3000 on the nightstand, and no recollection of the night before. This is a sign that Angie needs to get it together. Of course, she still makes one major misstep (and a few small others) until she finally tries to get her life back in order. For her this means finding a job in fashion, preferably before her 23rd birthday which is coming up soon, and learning to be a better friend. Seems straightforward enough, but obviously it won't be!

I really liked getting to know Angie. As crazy and as different as she is from me (in almost every possibly way, aside from our love for clothes and bags), there's something relatable about her. Not so much the situations she finds herself in but Angie herself. She's just a girl who's afraid. Of opening up to anyone, even the girls she says are her friends, of failure, of confrontation, of so many different things. I think anyone, whether you're closer to her age or mine or even older, can relate to that. Figuring out what you want to do with your life and actively pursuing it is hard. Angie definitely struggles with this throughout the entire book and hits a lot of low points where she feels almost ready to give up. But I wanted her to succeed. 

But Angie isn't just trying to figure out her career. She's learning more about the girls she's living with and maybe even finding a nice guy to be with. It was different seeing Pia, Coco, Madeleine and Julia through Angie's eyes. She's going through a rough patch with Pia (it seems almost inevitable to go through a growing apart period with your BFF at least once!) but in the process gets to change her preconceptions about Coco, Madeleine and Julia. I liked seeing her strike up friendships with them, outside of their mutual connection to Pia, and it made me interested to learn more about them. (Future books?) Then the nice guy I mentioned earlier.. well, I don't want to spoil the surprise but he's a pretty great guy and I enjoyed watching them become friends first before anything else. 

(Some) reservations
The characters, Angie especially, find themselves in a lot of crazy situations. Like I can't imagine this happening in real life and if they do, can this much insanity actually ensue in that short a period of a time? Because I can't wrap my mind around it and I personally feel like it's unrealistic (but hey, maybe to some other people this is normal!), it takes me out of the story. I had this same issue with the first book. It's just too much. When the focus is just on the main character's struggles and especially the bonds between these women, the book really hits its stride and I wish the plot was toned down to let this aspect of the book shine. 

Do I recommend?
If you like reading about female friendships and relate to the struggle of trying to figure out your life while in your early 20s, this is a fun series to check out. It's light contemporary but definitely has relatable themes (when you look past the crazy situations). 

Happy reading! 

2 comments:

  1. I really love this series! Sure, there's a lot of craziness involved (and not all of it too realistic). But it's entertaining, thoughtful and just plain fun. I love these girls! And I can't wait for the next one - at least, I'm hoping there's a next one!

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  2. I just commented on Alexa's blog this afternoon telling her that y'all have me really interested in this series! Even though you've said there are some unrealistic moments, I still think I'll be picking these up. Sometimes I just need something fun and a little crazy! Plus, I love that these books are about 20-somethings.

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