This was one of those books that received so much hype that I didn’t know whether or not I should read it. Every time I saw it pop up on social media sites I always went to goodreads to read the summary. After I read it I turned the book away. It just didn’t seem to grab me. Perhaps I wasn’t as much of a big trend-follower as I thought. I don’t know what got me to cave and to buy the book, and the novella Sweet Little Thing, but from the first chapter, no, from the prologue, I knew this was going to be a different kind of touching love story.
Growing up we have plenty of time to decide what we want and who we want to be. Some people need more time than others. Other people have their future laid out for them. Graduating from an Ivy League school, she struggles with her future, wondering whether to put her business degree to good use, or to purse her love of music. After Mia’s father unexpectedly passes away, she’s the one that has to pick up the pieces and move to New York to take care of his affairs. While in New York she meets Will, an up and coming musician who’s almost if not just as talented as she is. He’s sweet, gorgeous, charming, extremely talented, and soon goes from being her friend to her roommate, maybe even a little more. But Mia can’t bring herself to open up to him. She wants a steady and stable future and isn’t sure if Will’s musical career is enough to keep her going and to pay the bills.
In a lot of ways Sweet Thing reminds me a lot of The Sea of Tranquility. (Please, before any haters feeling like arguing this, or disputing it, it’s my opinion.) The Sea of Tranquility had a lot of depth and emotion from start to finish, but Sweet Thing had…something special, something realistic about it all the way through. Different emotions set off inside me that resonated like TSOT, which is why I made the comparison.
I really didn’t know what to expect when I picked up this book. All I knew is that there was a musician, and his name was Will and that it was a love story. Three of my all-time favourite things. I really didn’t expect this book to have as much of an effect on me as it did, and was surprised with how the way it moved and touched me.
I felt like I could relate a lot to Mia, or at least could admire her tenacity, and her ability to uproot herself, start over, and try to figure out what she wanted in life. I find myself like her, wanting stability rather than taking a leap of faith. Stability might be safe but it won’t necessarily make you happy. As much as Mia frustrated me with the decisions she made and the way she was acting, I couldn’t help but sympathize with her, which is sort of rare. She speaks her mind, sometimes doesn’t think before speaking, and overall makes her seem very human in the sense that “if I was in her position this is probably how I would react”. I could see where she was coming from, turning Will away, not sure if his lifestyle was going to be enough for her. And from a third-person perspective it would be obvious to use that Will is clearly in love with her right from the get-go and she’s the one stalling. But like the saying goes, “we don’t know what we have until we lose it.”
It’s definitely at the end where this book touched me the most. I was SO CLOSE TO TEARS, choking them back and trying not to cry from the overwhelming waves of emotion I felt. The story really does come full-circle and in the end Mia does get her happily ever after. It’s just that sometimes, like in real life, it takes us a long time to really figure out what we want and who we need to be with in order to be happy.
“You have to teach your heart and mind how to sing together…then you’ll hear the sound of your soul.”
Now, as much praise as I give the story and the characters and the romance, there is something I found a little off about the book. The pacing seemed odd and disconnected sometimes, and often times there were big time jumps between events. There was little to direct the reader into really connecting with the event or the passage, as it quickly jumped from one scene to another. I found there to be little character interaction between Mia and a lot of the characters; most of the story taking place in her head. I have to admit there were times were I was tempted to put the book down, but at the same time I needed to see the story through to the end and see where it was going to go.
Before this review gets any longer, I’d just like to take this moment to talk about Will Ryan. Who I wish was real and wish he was mine because he’s what I need this exact moment. OFF TOPIC FOR A SEC. Can there be like….a service, where you hire guys to be your boyfriend for the day…or for the night, and you know pay them. I don’t even mean just sex I mean just to have someone to hold your hand, give you physical contact and cuddle you while you sleep, I mean is that so much to ask? (Obviously there would have to be a female equivalent for this to work, but you know what I mean).
I think Will is the epitome of PERFECT BOYFRIEND MATERIAL and am insanely jealous of Mia. Sure, I hate her for some of her poor life choices, but I defend her a lot. Will is just, amazing, talented, charming, sexy, he’s damn playful, responsible, and even though he isn’t sure of his future he’s not a deadbeat. He doesn’t just sit around and do nothing, he has a plan, he knows what he wants and wants to work for it. More to the point he wants someone in his life to share the dream with him and to be with him every step of the way. Where are guys like these? Seriously, where are they? Can I please move? Cause this is ridiculous.
There is no doubt in my mind that Carlino is EXTREMELY TALENTED. Her characters are believable and her emotions capture the real feelings of loss, heart-break, and completely being able to find yourself. Sweet Thing has definitely become one of my favourite books, and will probably rank higher upon extra re-reads.
4/5 Hearts of Love