I just finished reading an ARC copy of Want by Stephanie Lawton. I stayed up until 2 this morning unable to put it down. I thought about it all day and rushed home after work to finish reading it. It’s been some time since I’ve been so compelled by a book that I was unable to put it down, so I’m thrilled to share this review with you.
The main character in Want is Julianne, a complex, interesting and immensely talented seventeen-year-old. She faces a horrific home life, the psychological impact of which made her a very real and believable character. Her relationships were highly complex, and with her absent-yet-in-the-house father, her mentally ill mother, and her beloved brother away at college, Juli is truly alone. Whisked into making adult decisions, she must learn to fight for herself to go after her dreams.
It was the love triangle in this book that had me turned inside out. I was enticed, frustrated, caught up, and even a bit wary, at times, of the direction things were heading. I oscillated between being on Team Isaac and Team Dave, both of whom were gorgeous in their own way. Right up to the end of the book, I wasn’t sure which side I was on, because I had empathy for both men and understood her attraction to them, despite the taboo of the age differences. I even held my breath a few times as she made some tough choices in what felt like a very intense and yet profoundly realistic story.
This story opened my eyes to how exciting contemporary YA romance can be.