Friday, February 7, 2014

Review on Waiting on the Sidelines

I've been in the mood for a good contemporary romance. The magic, the creatures, the spells, are all very exciting, but sometimes you want a break. Sometimes you just want a normal human-human relationship with drama and parent troubles. I recently read an awesome contemporary novel. Wanna know what it is?

Waiting on the Sidelines by Ginger Scott

Waiting on the Sidelines (Waiting on the Sidelines, #1)
Format: E-book
Pub. Date: November 13th, 2013
Nolan Lennox had things figured out. Named after a baseball legend, she enjoyed being the Tomboy, her closet filled with her brother’s hand-me-downs, cut-off jeans and soccer shorts. But when her first trip to high school results in a broken heart from the first boy to ever make her heart flutter and cruel words from an older girl she once thought a family friend, Nolan starts to question the very person she thought she was and wonders if her humble upbringing can compete with the afforded luxuries of her privileged peers.

Throughout the next four years, Nolan struggles to maintain herself throughout her path of discovery, learning just how cruel teenagers can be through the pressures of underage drinking, sexuality and class. And despite how life seems to continue to work against her, she still manages to listen to her heart, falling deeper and deeper for the guy the entire town adores, even if he only sees her as a friend. Can Nolan strike a compromise between her own integrity and the boy she loves? And can she make him notice her before it’s too late?

Reed Johnson came to Coolidge High School with a lot of fanfare. The son of a hometown football legend and the brother of a local football hero, Reed wore all the pressures of carrying a town without hope into the spotlight. Thankfully, he had the talent to back it up. But when he meets a girl who makes him think twice about exactly what being a hero means, he starts to wonder if following in his brother’s footsteps might be all wrong.

Nolan Lennox was everything that was opposite of expected. She didn’t flirt, she didn’t drink and she didn’t sleep around. Nothing about her was easy, but something about her made Reed want to try harder. Though she didn’t look the part, she seemed to be spending a lot of time in Reed’s thoughts, and he wondered if she could be the one who made it all worthwhile. But could Reed handle letting her down? And would breaking her heart break him beyond repair?

Waiting on the Sidelines explores young love to its fullest, exposing how real young heartbreak and passion is and how important it is to discover yourself and hold onto your own identity. The story follows two young characters as they deal with mature situations, including the prevalence of bullying and promiscuity in today’s high school setting. Ultimately, Waiting on the Sidelines is a story of hope, honesty and those powerful, first true loves—the ones worth holding onto at any cost.

My rating: 5 out of 5 footballs!
My recommendation: Anyone who likes contemporary novels about a girl learning how to grow up and be herself.
My review:
My copy was provided to me by Netgalley.
This isn't your average romance book. This book takes place over four years, beginning with Nolan's freshman year at high school, ending with her graduating. While this book was mainly about Nolan's romantic troubles, this book was all about Nolan growing up.
At first, Nolan considered herself an awkward, tomboy who wasn't pretty or girly enough to be liked by guys. Yet she had her friends and the sports that she loves. But over the years, Nolan begins to truly appreciate herself and allows herself to open her heart. She begins to see with new eyes her own beauty, both her outside and her inner beauty.
Nolan's relationship with Reed spans for years. She fell in love with him by just glancing at him for the first time. But it isn't the stupid insta-love that's built on nothing. Nolan has actual feelings for Reed and even though he came off as a jerk as first, her feelings are true and invincible. But Reed didn't see it, not at first.
He just thought of Nolan as a friend at first and Nolan was okay with that, at least, that's what she told herself. But her feelings keep growing and evolving and after years, Reed finally begins to notice her back.
This book was so heartfelt and full of feels. It made me almost cry at several parts and the ending definitely made me release a few tears. Nolan suffers through so much heartbreak, so much pain, but to her, it's all worth it in the end.
As well as dealing with romance, this book focuses on topics like alcohol and bullying. But this book makes things like alcohol the enemy, makes alcohol the reason for so many problems. The author successfully leads the reader away from alcohol. And the bullying just made me want to beat up the bully myself, but Nolan just dealt with it and kept it a secret. But that's what actual people do. They keep their feelings locked inside so no one can ever find them.
This book was just so real. The characters acted like normal people would in every day life. Reed makes several stupid mistakes, he gets jealous, he gets drunk, just like a normal guy does. He dealt with some pretty bad stuff and he tried to deal with this stuff the best he could, even though by doing this lead him on the wrong path on several occasions.
At times I didn't like Reed with his stupid mistakes and how he continuously went back to drinking and partying. Yet he was filled with emotions that tormented him everyday and he just couldn't find a way to get them out.
Nolan is what every girl should act like. Sure she has insecurities and wants to give up, but who doesn't? She's like an actual person with feelings and doubts. Nolan had real worries about college and her grades, but she never let the things going on in her life impact her future in a negative way. She was always true to herself, never giving in to peer pressure and standing up for herself and her friends. She was always there for her friends whenever they needed help. Nolan was even there for people who hated her. No one I know would ever do that for an enemy.
The characters aren't perfect. They all have their flaws, but the flaws are what makes someone who they really are. I loved this book and I would definitely read it again.
Be prepared for feels when you read this book. You might even want a box of tissues next to you the whole time. And be prepared to root on Nolan, no matter what.

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