Review: Love, Life and the List by Kasie West

35068742Publisher: Harper Teen
Date Published: December 26, 2017
Pages: 384 pages
Blurb: Seventeen-year-old Abby Turner’s summer isn’t going the way she’d planned. She has a not-so-secret but definitely unrequited crush on her best friend, Cooper. She hasn’t been able to manage her mother’s growing issues with anxiety. And now she’s been rejected from an art show because her work “has no heart.” So when she gets another opportunity to show her paintings Abby isn’t going to take any chances.

Which is where the list comes in.

Abby gives herself one month to do ten things, ranging from face a fear (#3) to learn a stranger’s story (#5) to fall in love (#8). She knows that if she can complete the list she’ll become the kind of artist she’s always dreamed of being. But as the deadline approaches, Abby realizes that getting through the list isn’t as straightforward as it seems… and that maybe—just maybe—she can’t change her art if she isn’t first willing to change herself.

This is the first in a set of three standalone books with crossover characters.

This book by Kasie West is in my shelf for so long I can’t even remember so I just one day had decided to pick up this book. There are mainly two reasons I bought this book.

First of all, it’s written by Kasie West. I’ve read some of her books – On the Fence and Fill-in Boyfriend – which are both good books with very cute plot. This book from Kasie West is very similar to her other books which are cute, fluffy, and light story.

The second reason was that it features a list. I am a sucker for lists. I make them all the time even though not everything on the list is accomplished. I guess, I just like the thought of being organized and all. And who’d pass down to read a book which features a list and a romance, right? Well, not me.

So, the book is mainly about a budding artist (a painter, specifically) named Abby. Now, Abby wants to put some of her artworks for sale in the gallery but apparently according to the director of the gallery her paintings “lacked heart” and that she needs to grow. In order to grow, Abby created a list that she needs to fulfill. It’s like a bucket list which has a deadline.

My first thought was that the book was not really well-researched enough. I don’t mean research like academic research but I would just want to know what did the curator meant by the fact that Abby lacks heart and needs to grow. It needs more than “you copy it from a picture, hun” talk. I guess it lacked the technicality about art that I was looking for in the book. So I guess, that’s one downside of the book.

“Art is subjective, that’s what makes it great,” I said. “We each get to love or hate something on our own terms.”

Despite the plot being a little bit cliche, I liked how the characters are not one sided. The characters have their own story. In Abby’s household alone, the people there are really lovely.  We have the sarcastic yet loving grandfather, an “agoraphobic” mother (who probably needs help according to the book), and her absent (in reality) but really present (is that even possible?) father. I especially liked Abby and her father’s emails. It was very refreshing. This is the same with the banters of Abby and her grandfather. However there are times that make Abby’s sarcasm a little bit rude and all.

“No matter how much we wish we could twist and bend someone’s will to ours, they have to want it too.”

Then there were her friends too. Cooper, her love interest, may sometimes be a jerk for me. I hate how he thinks he is cool but is actually acting like a jerk scenes which I think was pretty handful. Speaking of her love interest, there might be a love triangle going on and a bestfriends to lovers trope. Some people might be hesitant about it. I was really icky about Iris. I really don’t like her. She has this snotty rich girl going on her which I really don’t like. However, I like Elliot and how he is concerned with Abby. I also like (more like love) Lacey. Lacey is Abby’s friend who was there to support her. I also ship Abby’s two other friends – Rachel and Justin.

“We’re good for each other, I think. You bring me down to earth and I make you dream big.”

On to the world building, it isn’t that much. I really had a hard time imagining the places and the things Abby sees. It was like her artworks; how the descriptions of the places lacked depth for me.
rating 3.5

So pretty much, that’s it. Overall, I think I give this 3.5  bees since I enjoyed it but not really going to reread it in the near future, I guess. I recommend to this to people who is just looking for a cute light read.

let's talk

What are your thoughts about this book by Kasie West? Are you going to read the other books in this world too? And aren’t you amazed how Kasie West publishes her book (this is like her nth book during 2017? She was like just releasing and releasing. Anyway, let me hear your thoughts!

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