Hey, look, it’s one of those rare reviews of a book I actually bought. Shocker, I know. But I was really surprised by this book and wanted to write something on it.
So here we go!
Beach Read by Emily Henry follows January. A writer of ‘women’s fiction’ her books are filled with romance and happy endings but after finding out about her Father’s affair at his funeral, January is struggling to write her happy endings. Introducing Gus, literary fiction writer extraordinaire, college rival and her neighbor in the house her Dad left her. After an argument, they make a bet to try writing each other’s genre to see if that helps and that’s where the shenanigans begin.
First and foremost, this book made me want to write. The talk of those words coming easily in the past, of drafting, research and finding characters… I loved it so much. It’s felt like I’ve been in a writing drought for so long and I was just starting to slip out of it when I picked this book up and it made me want to write at 2AM when I should’ve been sleeping.
Though this book is a romance, it was a single character perspective. Plus the issues being shown including for other characters gave it an almost chick-lit edge. And, yes, chick-lit can have very emotional and sometimes dark issues so I stand by that. This book could be labelled like January’s own books and I’m okay with that. I will admit to skimming over the smut rather than reading it. I only needed to twice so that wasn’t too bad but I’m sure for people wanting to read smutty scenes it’s great. I’m just really not in the mood.
I did love the characters in this book. January and Gus, yes. But also Shadi, Pete and Maggie. Even Dave seemed kind of sweet. You’re given a lot of reasons to love these characters and they’re super supportive. I love that the moment January said she needed Shadi, she was there. Had to travel but she was going to be there for her best friend. Seeing scenes like that in books makes me so happy. Friendships are just as important as romance and you see that in this book.
However, if this book wanted me to feel at all sorry for her Dad or Sonya, it failed. They both knew the affair was wrong and moving on and apologising? Doesn’t make it better in a case like this. I’m still mad thinking about it.
I did enjoy the romance between January and Gus though. I’m a big fan of the roasting and bickering. I laughed quite a bit and that always helps me support a couple more. You want to be able to laugh with them during the light times.
Overall, I really enjoyed this book and will definitely check out Emily Henry again!