Anise has lived in Santa Cruz her whole life. So when her aunt gets in a car accident, and Anise and her father need to fly out to Nebraska to take care of her cousins while her aunt recovers, Anise is a little more than out of place. While at the park with her cousins, she meets a one-armed, charismatic, skateboarder named Lincoln.
Why this book?: I follow Laura Silverman on twitter, and heard only amazing things. So when someone on twitter offered to send me their ARC, I accepted as fast as humanly possible.
More than just a “romance”
Let me get this out first. Yes, I had very high expectations, after hearing so many people rave about this book. Reading the synopsis, I knew right away that this probably wasn’t going to by my cup of tea. But I wanted to try anyways, since I had been looking forward to it, and because the author deserved all the hype she could get.
This books went above and beyond the stereotypical contemporary romance. It hit on parental relationships, family accidents, friendships, and the importance of admitting that you were, indeed, an asshole, and were sorry. All of these rocked my boat, at the same time as the slow-burn romance between Lincoln and Anise was developing. It was an amazing mixture, because even though it went into hard-hitting topics, Silverman was still able to comfort and entertain the reader with the romance.
I found myself laughing all throughout this book, especially when Lincoln and Anise were talking. So many of the characters were realistic and relatable, that I felt as if I knew them myself and that they were actual people.
I cannot implore how amazing this part was. Not only was it an amazing read, but it was also diverse to the very possible brim. Lincoln, whom I mentioned to be one-armed earlier, is also black and adopted. His father is Vietnamese. His brother, Austin, is white. Anise’s best friend, Tess, is Samoan. Cassie and Marie, more of Anise’s friends, are a sapphic couple, and I believe one or both of them are people of color.
While reveling in all of this diversity, there was also the amazing plot and storytelling. Silverman’s writing was artful yet simple, painting out her world with beautiful simplicity. Silverman went back and referenced events with a nod or a metaphor. All of these repeating descriptions and explanations held a certain connotation because of the events earlier. Silverman obviously put a lot of effort developing the characters and the book and the prose, and it was wonderful.
Something else that really hit me personally was a simple rewording in which Anise said people, instead of male/female threw themselves at Lincoln. It was very nonbinary inclusive, even if no non-cisgendered characters were featured. These little inclusions were sprinkled all throughout the book, with even a straight up talk on the stigma of being disabled and how people treat them like a ticking time bomb.
Final Rating: ★★★★★
Girl Out of Water didn’t just meet my high expectations, it blew them away. I mentioned this on my Goodreads, but I’m pretty confident in saying that this is probably one of the best contemporary romances that I’ve ever read.
Would I Recommend?
Yes, and to every single person. Even if you only like fantasy, or adult, or science fiction, or horror, or historical fiction, I seriously push all of you to read this one. Contemporary is by far one of my lesser favorite genres, and add that with romance, it’s near last. Laura Silverman and Girl Out of Water had a lot of things going against it in order for me to enjoy it, and they still managed to blow me out of the water.
Published: May 2nd, 2017
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Page Count: 320
Synopsis: via Goodreads
Anise Sawyer plans to spend every minute of summer with her friends: surfing, chowing down on fish tacos drizzled with wasabi balsamic vinegar, and throwing bonfires that blaze until dawn. But when a serious car wreck leaves her aunt, a single mother of three, with two broken legs, it forces Anise to say goodbye for the first time to Santa Cruz, the waves, her friends, and even a kindling romance, and fly with her dad to Nebraska for the entire summer. Living in Nebraska isn’t easy. Anise spends her days caring for her three younger cousins in the childhood home of her runaway mom, a wild figure who’s been flickering in and out of her life since birth, appearing for weeks at a time and then disappearing again for months, or even years, without a word.
Complicating matters is Lincoln, a one-armed, charismatic skater who pushes Anise to trade her surfboard for a skateboard. As Anise draws closer to Lincoln and takes on the full burden and joy of her cousins, she loses touch with her friends back home – leading her to one terrifying question: will she turn out just like her mom and spend her life leaving behind the ones she loves