I received an ARC of this book through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5
A few weeks ago, I was browsing through NetGalley and I saw that Beach Read was available for request. Not only did the title make it sound like exactly the type of book i’d been wanting to read, but i’d also seen a few people online reading it, so I decided to test my luck and request it! I’d been getting a few rejections so I really wasn’t hoping for much, but a few days later an email popped up telling me Emily Henry’s upcoming book was available for me to read! WOOOOO! First book I got approved for!
Let’s talk some more about that title, will you ? What makes a Beach Read ? For me, it’s a book that you can’t put down (perfect to spend hours on the beach), and makes you swoon (who doesn’t want to dream on holidays) while still teaching you some life lessons (gotta have something to talk about after summer, right?). And Beach Read filled all those boxes perfectly!
The book follows January Andrews as she spends the summer in the house her dad left her when he died. Which she learned about at his funeral when his secret mistress approached her and shattered all her illusions about her parents’ love story. Which, you might understand, isn’t very helpful for a romance novels writer. January has a book to deliver to her publisher and she already spent most of her advance, so when she breaks up with her long term boyfriend, she has no choice but to go to that house and try to understand her late father. Things take a turn when she finds out that her new next door neighbour is none other than her college nemesis and fellow published author (though not of romance at all) Augustus (Gus) Everett. He too is facing a bad case of writer’s block, and they strike a deal to teach each other about their respective genres.
Through the book, January deals with so much more than romance. She learns how to face family secrets and how to maybe forgive her dad for not being perfect. She opens herself up to a completely different world, and most of all, she finds herself to be much stronger and resourceful than she thought herself to be. Meanwhile, Gus learns to let people in and to see himself as more than damaged.
Just like any beach read, this book will surprise you by how serious and dark it can sometimes be, while still making you smile and swoon. And if you’re like me, will make you ignore all your responsibilities until you’ve finished reading it. If this doesn’t become everyone’s favourite summer 2020 book, I don’t understand.