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A Thousand Boy Kisses

A Thousand Boy Kisses by Tillie Cole

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Reaction Upon Reading: That was absolutely soul shattering!


Synopsis:

One kiss lasts a moment.
But a thousand kisses can last a lifetime.

One boy.
One girl.
A bond that is forged in an instant and cherished for a decade.
A bond that neither time nor distance can break.
A bond that will last forever.
Or so they believe.
When seventeen-year-old Rune Kristiansen returns from his native Norway to the sleepy town of Blossom Grove, Georgia, where he befriended Poppy Litchfield as a child, he has just one thing on his mind. Why did the girl who was one half of his soul, who promised to wait faithfully for his return, cut him off without a word of explanation?
Rune’s heart was broken two years ago when Poppy fell silent. When he discovers the truth, he finds that the greatest heartache is yet to come.


“I think hearts beat a rhythm like a song. I think, that just like music, we’re drawn to a particular melody. I heard your heart’s song, and yours heard mine.”


I was pleasantly surprised by this book. It was not at all what I had expected. I picked up the book because as I was scrolling through the ‘top read books this week’ for romance it was on the list. I hadn’t even heard of the book or the author. Then I investigated further and saw how high the ratings were and just knew this one had to be a gem.

Poppy and Rune are neighbours. They met when they were 5 and have been each others infinities ever since. Rune is the blonde haired, blue eyed Norwegian bad ass (Thor 2.0). Poppy is the cello playing dark horse with brown hair and green eyes. They are a combination no one understands, but the love they have is one for the ages.

They don’t fit in a box. If you pick up this book you are choosing to go on a journey roller-coaster of a of love, loss, firsts, anger, grief, acceptance and so much more.


“Kiss eight hundred and nineteen was the kiss that changed it all. The kiss that proved that a long-haired brooding boy from Norway and a quirky girl from the Deep South could find a love to rival the greats.”


Likes:

  • Poppy
    • Her name is so cute and when Rune calls her Poppymin, I could just die
  • Rune’s anger is so raw. You can feel every emotion he goes through. It is so tangible I can feel it as it bursts off the pages
  • RUNE
    • He is perfection. What girl wouldn’t want a boy for her first love…better yet her one true love!
  • The Swamp Dinner
  • The Cello Performance
  • Rune + Alton + Swamp Monster = warm fuzzies!
  • NYC
  • THE LANTERNS! 

Dislikes:

  • The cover
    • I know you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but I almost didn’t pick this book up because I really don’t like the cover. It looks like someones first attempt at Photoshop. It needs a cover that conveys the emotions this book is packing. 
  • Towards the end it all got a bit too much for me. There were too many moments of tears, epiphany’s, declaring undying love and all that jazz. I think because there were so many it started to feel quite forced. It become less and less endearing and more and more annoying.

“Why be miserable when you can be happy? It’s an obvious choice to me.”


Reactions, Ramblings and Questions

  • OMG I am such an idiot. I thought she disappeared because she was pregnant. I thought she was trying to keep it all a secret and didn’t want to tell Rune…for whatever dumb reason
  • Oh man I did not see this book going down a ‘Walk to Remember’ & ‘Fault in Our Stars’ path
  • I still don’t understand why you would think you are helping someone by not telling them you are sick. I would want everyone I love around me for support.
  • I need a miracle
    • I know deep down there won’t be one, because a book like this doesn’t get rated so highly with a cliched happy/miracle ending. I want one so badly though, its not fair! 
  • Oh that was awkward…he thought she cut her hair
  • The scene with Rune and his father was utter heartbreak. I almost couldn’t read it. It was destroying and I felt for Rune but I also wanted to slap him upside the head at the same time.
  • Poppy is so darn optimistic. I would find this exhausting. I know she has had a lot of time to deal, but I almost need to see her grieve
  • There is a lot of crying from both characters, like borderline too much. It is now getting annoying. Too many moments of D&Ms. I like the moment when they are keeping it light.
  • I love photography. It would be so fun to play around in a dark room.

“Live hard, love harder. Chase dreams, seek adventures … capture moments. Live beautifully.”


Overall Thoughts

I picked up this book with little expectations. I thought “Yup this looks like a nice fluffy romance.” What the heck?!? Tillie Cole you heartbreaker.

I didn’t just cry, I sobbed.

I broke when Rune gave Poppy kiss 1000 and then 1001, 1002, 1003 and 1004. I thought I had recovered and then we got to the chapter of Rune with the lanterns in the grove and I could barely keep it together. I felt like I had lost my soulmate (meanwhile he was next to me, probably thinking ‘here she goes again’).

I enjoyed the story a lot. There were times when I felt certain elements were overdone, but the emotions it made me feel and the conviction of both characters was incredible.

The only real negative I have about the book (other than my minor dislikes above) was that at times I found the writing to be somewhat juvenile, where it sounded like a teenager was writing, but maybe that was the affect Cole was going for.

The ending threw me through a loop. I don’t know whether to be happy, sad or mad. I genuinely wasn’t expecting or prepared for the book to end in that way. I need more time to decide how I truly feel about Cole’s choice.

Selfishly I am so happy that Rune was forever Poppy’s and Poppy was forever his. Writing this review is a struggle because the way Cole writes makes me feel like I know them. I am getting choked up just thinking about how epic of a love story this is. I don’t think I have ever read a greater love story. 


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What did you think of this book?

Leave a comment below.

Rating Report
Plot
four-stars
Characters
five-stars
Writing
three-half-stars
Pacing
three-half-stars
Cover
three-stars
Overall: four-stars

Kindred Spirits

Kindred Spirits by Rainbow Rowell
on March 3rd 2016
Genres: Contemporary
Pages: 62
Format: E-Book

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Reaction Upon Reading: Awwwwwww! Rainbow Rowell is a goddess of storytelling


“And the thing about nerd culture being mainstream culture now means that there’s no place to just be a nerd among other nerds – without being reminded that you’re the nerd.”


Synopsis:

‘Everybody likes everything these days. The whole world is a nerd.’
‘Are you mad because other people like Star Wars? Are you mad because people like me like Star Wars?’
‘Maybe.’

If you broke Elena’s heart, Star Wars would spill out. So when she decides to queue outside her local cinema to see the new movie, she’s expecting a celebration with crowds of people who love Han, Luke and Leia just as much as she does. What she’s not expecting is to be last in a line of only three people; to have to pee into a collectible Star Wars soda cup behind a dumpster or to meet that unlikely someone who just might truly understand the way she feels.


“Extroverts were nothing if not dependable.”


Likes:

  • Rainbow Rowell + A short story = happy me!
  • I love Star Wars!
    • I didn’t get into it until I was in my early 20s but it is one of the few fandoms I adore! 
    • Harry Potter will always be number one though
  • Rowell has a way of making you feel like your in the line with them, waiting and anticipating the release
    • I felt the cold
    • I felt the frustration with Elena’s mum constantly checking up on them
    • I felt uncomfortable when Gabe was closed off
  • Rowell uses unconventional main characters – which I love
    • The main character is a young Vietnamese girl named Elena
  • The use of social media and showcasing its impact in such a short story
    • Cultural trend of the ‘hightlight reel’
    • Connecting with people in real life instead of being lost in the online world
  • I want to see her Star Wars dance! 
  • Troy
    • I love him! Can he just be my best friend, he is soooooo funny

Dislikes:

  • It was too short!
    • I have run out of books Rowell writes about teens…I need more! 
  • “Are you responsible for Jar Jar Binks”
    • Nooooo I must be the only Star Wars fan who actually likes Jar Jar – this makes me feel like a monster for liking him so much

“People who are jerks don’t get to decide whether they’re jerks. It’s left up to a jury of their peers.”


Overall Feelings:

I love to change up my reading every now and then with a short story. Rainbow Rowell has fast become one of my favourite authors. I thoroughly enjoyed this short story.

I love how this short story is able to touch on the cultural trend of people using social media as a highlight reel. Rowell highlights on the issue of  people feeling the need to share the ins and out of their lives with others on social media. The main character shares posts that makes her life seem better than it actually is using the #thirdinline instead of #lastinline. You see her make a conscious choice to do this.

Rowell also touches on stereotyping. Gabe has misdirected stereotyping about Elena. They both see themselves as nerds but are intimidated by each other. Gabe makes the statement that he is “forced to sit next to the cool girl for four days” yet he only knows her from a distance. It is nice to see how this preconceived idea/stereotype he makes changes over such a short story. Gabe and Elena connected so well together. Gabe was able to see the Elena is not the actions of her friends and Elena was able to see she can’t be a bystander while other people around her do the wrong thing.

I am so impressed with the themes and morals in this short story. I love a quick read with a message!


“If you broke Elena’s heart, Star Wars would spill out. This was a holy day for her — it was a cosmic event. This was her planets lining up. (Tatooine, Coruscant, Hoth.)”

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What did you think of the book?

Leave a comment below.

Rating Report
Plot
four-stars
Characters
four-stars
Writing
five-stars
Pacing
five-stars
Cover
two-stars
Overall: four-stars