Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Publication Date: December 31, 2013
Rating: 3/5 stars
Get it: Amazon | B&N
Wren Caswell is average. Ranked in the middle of her class at Sacred Heart, she’s not popular, but not a social misfit. Wren is the quiet, “good” girl who's always done what she's supposed to—only now in her junior year, this passive strategy is backfiring. She wants to change, but doesn’t know how.
Grayson Barrett was the king of St. Gabe’s. Star of the lacrosse team, top of his class, on a fast track to a brilliant future—until he was expelled for being a “term paper pimp.” Now Gray is in a downward spiral and needs to change, but doesn’t know how.
One fateful night their paths cross when Wren, working at her family’s Arthurian-themed catering hall, performs the Heimlich on Gray as he chokes on a cocktail weenie, saving his life literally and figuratively. What follows is the complicated, awkward, hilarious, and tender tale of two teens shedding their pasts, figuring out who they are—and falling in love.
I was hesitant to read The Promise of Amazing due to all the mixed reviews that kept popping up. Upon finishing the book, I realized that though the novel did not live up to the title of amazing, it did not crash and burn either. I found parts that I wasn’t a fan of and I also found parts that I liked tremendously as well.
The Promise of Amazing was spilt into two points of view between Wren and Grayson. I related more to Wren because she was smart and quiet; a very good person at heart. Grayson, on the other hand, was very hard to like because he started off being an asshole and a playboy, someone who stirred up trouble. Grayson did grow on me the more I read and got to know him and the more he wanted to change for himself and for Wren. These two character were different in almost every sense, but the same in wanting to change for the better. Wren wanted to be more than average, someone who wasn’t quiet and Grayson wanted to get his act together. They inadvertently helped one another to see their lives differently and I liked that part about them.
I liked Grayson and Wren’s relationship and the complications they had to go through that kept them apart or brought them together. However, I was not a fan of how quick these two fell in love. It was nice seeing them fight for one another and seeing how they handled their problems individually though. They had a great connection that felt authentic and I thought they were super adorable together. I just wished the L word didn’t come out so quickly.
I didn’t mind the slow pacing of this storyline, but I thought that some of the twists were more forced than it should have been. A lot the things that were mentioned weren’t really expanded on and others were explained all in one sitting that it felt more like info dump and I didn’t really enjoy that. I also thought that some moments weren’t really necessary and felt more like fillers to draw things out. The upside of the dual points of view was being able to experience the characters feelings and reactions at first hand, but the downside was the lack of elemental surprise of knowing everything before the other character did. The ending was rushed and a little bit anticlimactic after what happened between Wren, Grayson, and the other characters.
Overall, The Promise of Amazing had great potential to be totally awesome, but it sort of fell through bit by bit. Not to say that it wasn’t an ok read in the least because I was fond of the main characters.
*Thanks to Harper Teen/ Blazer + Bray for sending a copy for review
I was not compensated for my opinion.