Goodreads Synopsis: The summer before Ivy’s senior year is going to be golden; all bonfires, barbeques, and spending time with her best friends. For once, she will just get to be. No summer classes, none of Granddad’s intense expectations to live up to the family name. For generations, the Milbourn women have lead extraordinary lives—and died young and tragically. Granddad calls it a legacy, but Ivy considers it a curse. Why else would her mother have run off and abandoned her as a child?
But when her mother unexpectedly returns home with two young daughters in tow, all of the stories Ivy wove to protect her heart start to unravel. The very people she once trusted now speak in lies. And all of Ivy’s ambition and determination cannot defend her against the secrets of the Milbourn past….
The synopsis sounded very interesting, but it wasn’t what I expected. Let me break this down: one of the worst contemporary novels that I read so far. I’ve been having great luck with contemporary novels so far, but this one was not worth it.
As much as I didn’t love the book, I read it much quicker than I anticipated. Anyways, this story is about Ivy, a very talented girl that doesn’t realize she has a lot of potential to be anything she wants to be. She constantly feels pressure by her grandfather and feels that she is not good enough. All the women in her family have been blessed with talents, but at the same time, all the talented women die at a young age. Ivy was raised by her grandfather since her mother abandoned her, and her father is irrelevant since he plays no role in this story.
Life seemed perfect for Ivy, until her mother reappeared into her life. Ivy has depended on herself and grandfather, she feels bitter towards her mother which is understandable. Ivy’s mother, Erika, was a terrible character. She’s probably one of the worst mothers in YA fiction. There is nothing redeemable about her. Erika is constantly bitter, and it seems she has feelings of jealously towards her own daughter. She doesn’t acknowledge Ivy as her daughter. Ivy has two half sisters that refer to her as their aunt because of Erika. Tragic. Ivy is everything that Erika was meant to be. Erika is a horrible mother, but only behaves nicely to her youngest daughter. Erika has many emotional problems, and has problems remaining sober. I would have liked if Erika’s backstory were explored more. Erika and Ivy constantly bicker, and there is a lot of drama in this book! It felt more like a soap opera to me.
Now moving on to the love interests, I wasn’t a big fan of either guy. First off, there’s Alex who is Ivy’s best friend. Alex likes Ivy, but she doesn’t feel the same for him. She feels like she’ll jeopardize their friendship if they become a couple. All her other friends root for Ivy and Alex to be a couple. Alex wants to be Ivy’s boyfriend so badly, but Ivy pushes away his feelings. The other guy is Connor, who happens to be her grandfather’s top student, and really hot. Seriously, he’s nothing more than a hot guy with a love of poetry. Connor hardly gets developed at all!! There is a love triangle, but Alex never has a chance to be with Ivy. Alex was constantly jealous, and Ivy left him for Connor, a guy that she hardly knows. If I had to pick, I would chose Alex since he’s known her all her life, though he was a major jerk. Anyways, Ivy and Connor become a couple and almost have sex…by the way, this story takes place in the span of ten days. They hardly know each other…their relationship is much more passion than anything else. I would have liked their relationship way more if the relationship was more developed.
The ending was a let down, and I definitely don’t recommend reading this book. I rolled my eyes a lot when I was reading this story. There were several diverse topics that should have been explored more. My original rating for this book was much higher, but after much thought, I will give it a much lower rating.
Final Rating: ⭐️⭐️
Release Date:May 3rd 2016