Published by Harlequin on June 1st 2016
Genres: Young Adult Fiction, Family, Orphans & Foster Homes, Social Themes, Bullying, Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance, Romance, Contemporary
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"Heartbreakingly real…a remarkable novel about the power of first love and the courage it takes to face your fears." —Kami Garcia, #1 New York Times bestselling authorFrom #1 New York Times bestselling author Jennifer L. Armentrout comes a riveting story about friendship, survival and finding your voice.Growing up, Mallory Dodge learned that the best way to survive was to say nothing. And even though it’s been four years since her nightmare ended, she’s beginning to worry that the fear that holds her back will last a lifetime. Now, after years of homeschooling, Mallory must face a new milestone—spending her senior year at a public high school. But she never imagined she’d run into Rider Stark, the friend and protector she hasn’t seen since childhood, on her very first day.It doesn’t take long for Mallory to realize that the connection she shared with Rider never really faded. Yet soon it becomes apparent that she’s not the only one grappling with lingering scars from the past. And as she watches Rider’s life spiral out of control, Mallory must make a choice between staying silent and speaking out—for the people she loves, the life she wants and the truths that need to be heard.Praise"This book blew me away, completely. Gripping from page one, I—quite literally—couldn’t put it down."—Christina Lauren, New York Times bestselling author"We’re left breathless and a little haunted and wanting more."—Danielle Paige, New York Times bestselling author"An achingly real masterpiece… Heart-wrenching, heartwarming, heart-everything."—Wendy Higgins, New York Times bestselling author
For the past few weeks, I’ve been feeling very “meh” over the books I’ve been reading. They’ve been okay, but haven’t really blown me away, and I don’t know if that was because I was so tired (I’m exhausted, ALWAYS) or because the books just weren’t exciting me. So you can imagine my utter relief that I absolutely loved and devoured The Problem With Forever. I’ve read a few of Jennifer’s books, mostly her new adult ones, actually, and she’s always impressed me with her writing, but of all the books of hers I’ve read (like three? Maybe four?) this is by far the best one (so far). I read half of it before a shift at work and the second half after I’d finished my shift, that’s how excited this book made me feel.
What Mallory and Rider go through is probably one of the worst things ever, absolutely horrifying, something that no child (or adult) should ever have to go through, but the fact that they had each other, back when they were younger was a little bit of a beacon of hope. It wasn’t fantastic, but at least they had each other, and you just know from the very beginning, from that opening chapter, back in the past, that what Mallory and Rider share is extraordinary. We never learn how they come to be fostered together, but the way Rider wanted to protect Mallory, always, shines through this book as if it’s literally right there in front of you, watermarked into every page. It’s safe to say, it’s also swoon-worthy as hell.
I just wanted to grab Mallory in the biggest hug ever and never let her go. The way her past has affected her, made me want to punch someone, and to see her so shy and nervous, but willing to go to public school was so brave and amazing. And, y’know, BONUS because Rider. But there were just times I wanted to be next to her, to help her, to stick up for her, because she said at one stage she didn’t feel normal, and that just made me so sad because she was normal. Like Rider (or Ainsley) said to her, she was just shy. If being shy makes you abnormal, then there are *NO* normal people left. I loved the way that Ainsley, her best friend, helped her though, and how Carl and Rosa were there for Mallory whatever, and then there was Rider, who was just god damn perfect, no matter what he said. Their chemistry, right from the word go, was just off the charts, I’m not even kidding you. It was palpable. My book pages were quivering with excitement, I’m almost positive.
It feels strange for me to say I loved this book immensely. That Mallory and Rider made me indescribably happy, how they just fell into their old routines, how it was like four years hadn’t passed since they last saw each other. Especially considering what goes on in the book, with one particular plot point leaving me in tears; because despite seeing it coming, and hoping I was severely wrong, it still left me stunned and sad. But The Problem With Forever had it’s happy moments, had it’s times when you forgot the bad stuff, and the vast majority of that featured Mallory and Rider in the same scenes together because it was magical. This was the kind of read that I just couldn’t stop reading, it just completely overtook me, I felt like I was there, with Mallory. This is by far one of my favourite reads of this year, and it was exactly, exactly what I needed. Thank you, Jennifer, truly.