Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Callum & Harper by Fisher Amelie | Updated Book Review

Official Synopsis 

Life sucks for orphans Callum Tate and Harper Bailey. Kicked out of their foster homes because they suffer the 'eighteen disease' with nothing but a hundred dollar check from the government and a pat on the back, they're forced to rely on a system that failed them miserably. So they sit. They sit inside Social Services, waiting for their social workers to call their names and offer them the miracle they know will never come but they sit anyway because they have nowhere else to go, no other options on their very literal and figurative empty plates. But as they sit, they notice the other. Although captivated, they each come to the conclusion that life is complicated enough without throwing in a boiling tension that can't ever be acted upon because they're both too busy thinking about where their next meal will come from but when their names are called and both are placed on a year long waiting list for permanent housing, suddenly relying on each other seems like a very viable plan B. And, oh, how lovely Plan B's can be. Well, except for the psycho from Harper's past that haunts her and, oh, yeah, there's the little issue that neither of them knows they're in love with the other. Needless to say, Callum & Harper's life just got a bit more complicated. “One day, you and I are gonna’ wake up and be alright. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow but one day. One day. I promise you.” - Callum Tate

Pages: 256
Published by: Fisher Amelie
Genre: mature YA/NA romance

My rating for Callum & Harper (The Sleepless, #1):

This is a story about what lengths someone will go to for love and the romance of this novel was one that tore me in half with how much I simultaneously hated and loved it. Eventually, my love for these characters and their relationship came out on top of the frustrations I had, but I'll first discuss my distaste. Callum and Harper grew to love each other super (at times eye-rollingly) quickly. Instalove at its finest. Here were two eighteen year olds, just released from the State's custody with next to nothing in life, and their attraction, trust, safety, and belonging to each other was just as bizarre as it was immediate. I was able to overlook this by keeping an open mind (because if there is such a thing as love at first sight, this duo is the epitome of it), but as the story continued and they fell harder for each other, they both made the same unbelievably ridiculous decision, which snowballed into one big lie where neither person was 100% happy. And this lasted years. This was unfathomably frustrating because if someone in real life had been in this situation, all they could have (probably would have) done is tell one little truth and all would be swell.

Another downfall had to do with Callum and Harper's values and faith. Although I admired how these often neglected topics in YA literature were discussed, these conversations seemed out of character. Callum and Harper had really crappy lives before they met. No one cared enough about them to even introduce or influence any sort of faith in their lives so I find it hard to believe that they would be so optimistic and faithful about the cards they had been dealt.

"I loved her so much I could barely see straight. I wanted her so much I could barely breathe straight. I needed her so much I could barely think straight."

In spite of the negatives, I'm thrilled I was able to work through my frustrations because Callum & Harper has become my guilty pleasure instalove. They are sweet as honey, perfect as peach, delightful as a dandelion, bright as the sun, and all those lovely metaphors wrapped into one. The unconditional love they had and showed each other was incredible. It was a such a joy to read about the small aspects of their relationship such as their daily encounters, time spent with great friends, and their efforts to build a life together. Their love filled this book and my heart. Sometimes their ridiculous snowballing decisions I previously mentioned wasn't such a bad thing either because it urged me to keep reading and wishing for a HEA. I couldn't get enough of them and their story amounted to a feel-good tale. In fact, according to my original review, the ending was so "frighteningly wonderful" I "literally sunk OUT OF MY CHAIR and onto the FLOOR". So yes, I think I was quite able to overlook its faults and love it for everything else.
"One day, you and I are gonna wake up and be alright. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but one day. One day. I promise you."
Recommended for readers who like: Fisher Amelie, instalove, love at first sight, angst, sweet relationships, not entirely realistic tales.
Sexual content: Medium - mature thoughts/feelings; the end is less conservative. I would recommend to 16+. 

Find everything Fisher Amelie and her novels HERE!

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