Title: First Love
Author: James Patterson and Emily Raymond
Genres: Romance, Young Adult
Publication date: December 30th 2013
Number of pages: 277
Axi More is the kind of girl that one would normally consider to be a “good girl”. She scores excellent grades, never misses a class and is a bit of a know-it-all. In spite of that, Axi is not your everyday typical “goody-two-shoes”. She has plans; plans for a great escape and the only person she wants to take with her is her best friend Robinson who she also happens to be irreversibly, secretly and head over heels in love with. Together they embark on a roller coaster journey, were they discover new places and fulfill desires that she had only dreamt of fulfilling. Things however do not always turn out the way you expect to be and unfortunately Axi has to learn that the hard way. Her journey takes a couple of unexpected and undesirable turns.
Would it all be worth it in the end? Is leaving the safety of Klamath Falls to venture of into the unknown really the best idea for both of them?
I must warn you in advance. This review might be quite biased because I have an undying love and admiration for James Patterson novels. I have made it my life’s mission to collect and read his books. I will try my utmost to keep this review objective. James Patterson is well renowned for his action-packed thrillers namely the Alex Cross and the Women’s Murder Club series so if you are into mystery and murder then these are the books for you.
“First Love” however, as indicated from the title, is all about the mushy teenage romance. Through the use of first person narration we are able to view the world through the eyes of Axi. What I particularly love about his writing is his way of getting you attached to the characters.
This book is dripping with humour and wit. It had entertained me to no ends. Alongside the fun and excitement felt, the feeling of dread came about. Here we have two teenagers running away on an adventure causing mayhem wherever they go and it has the readers thinking that “yeah, this is bound to go wrong at some point”. But just like Axi’s adventure, what goes wrong is not what we expect it to be and it might have us being slightly mad at James Patterson for subjecting us to such torture. To all the weak hearted, please place a box of tissue paper beside you because yes, this can turn out to be quite an emotional read. *Queue the feels*
There is more to this novel than the teenage romance and the reckless behaviour. To me it is about taking chances, chasing your happiness, making the most of what you have and of course, living. It is Axi’s journey of self-discovery. There’s this particular quote that really stuck to me while reading and even now I can’t seem to forget it. “It wasn’t enough but yet it has to be.” This pretty much sums up life and its moments.
It is a well-written and captivating love story. This is not your toe-curling, sizzling romance kind of book but instead it is sweet, heart-warming and at one point it will have you smiling to yourself and whoever’s nearby watching you will probably think you are insane. My sister surely thought so. And ladies, you are also bound to fall in love with Robinson. It is inevitable. Apart from him being a natural charmer and possessing the swoon-worthy boyish looks (at least in Axi’s eyes since she is in love and all that), he has a fire in his soul and a thirst to live that makes his character all the more colourful.
Now for a tinge of negativity 😦
To some this book may come off as dry and unsatisfying in terms of the romance. Some might find it lacking and consider it a poor depiction of a “First Love’. Their journey can indeed be quite unbelievable, but hey if you can read about vampires and werewolves, why not believe in two teenagers traveling across the US with limited funds whilst “borrowing” vehicles. This admittedly, is not one of his best romance novels. I find that his novel “Suzanne’s letters to Nicholas” to be more suitable. I noticed a lack of excitement and enthusiasm when writing this review and concluded that I expected more from the book. Although I was surprisingly satisfied with the ending since these kinds of books tend to leave me in a constant state of denial.
But let that not dissuade you from flicking through the pages of this book. Take a chance, my dear readers and give this book a go. It certainly has my stamp of approval.