Thursday, April 2, 2015

Review: Between Now and Never by Laura Johnston

Between Now and Never by Laura Johnston
Release Date: March 31, 2015
Publisher:  Lyrical Press

My heart thrusts with a force that takes me by surprise. Telling me something I don’t understand. A splitting pain, a longing to slip back under. They tell me I was in a hit-and-run, but I can’t remember what happened that night. All I know is that I woke up with pictures in my pocket, a card from one of those photo booths in the mall. And I’m in the pictures. Cody Rush. Me and…Julianna.

Her brother was there that night, and my dad, the FBI agent, was the one who put her mom behind bars. What’s the connection? And why won’t Julianna talk to me now? Somehow, she holds the key to it all, and getting close–real close—to her for the answers I need will be no hardship at all…

I've never read any books by this author in the past, so I wasn't sure what to expect when I read this one.  I was very pleasantly surprised, however, and really enjoyed this book, not least of which because it was told in alternating points of view between Cody and Julianna.  I love being able to get into both characters' heads this way so that I can really get to know them both.

From the very beginning, I was drawn in by Cody Rush.  He was a sympathetic character, both before and after his memory loss.  This is a genuinely good guy, a nice guy, but with a flirty nature that just makes you fall in love with him.  After the hit and run accident, you get to see his more serious side as well, which added more depth to the character and just made you like him all the more.

Julianna had plenty of reasons to steer clear of Cody since his dad put her mom in prison, and yes, she is very wary of him.  There are so many wrong ways that the author could have handled this issue between them, some that would have been extremely cliche and would have made the book a boring, predictable read with no depth.  She surprised me though with how she chose to handle this, and with how she had Julianna handle it.  I don't want to say too much more or I'll be in danger of giving something away, but let's just say that how this aspect was handled really made you love both characters even more.

The story itself was a simple one, but interesting, a touch suspenseful, and very well written.  I pretty much flew through the pages, as she pacing was perfect and sucked me in completely.  I'll definitely be checking out other books by this author.  A very good read.

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