Published by Bloomsbury Publishing USA on April 4th 2017
Genres: Young Adult, Love & Romance, Social Themes, New Experience, Computers & Digital Media
Finding the perfect lip gloss? Easy. Finding your way in the world? A whole lot harder . . .
Who would have thought that a teenager could have a successful career creating makeup tutorial videos on YouTube? For Lacey Robbins, this dream has been her reality. An up-and-coming YouTuber, she has thousands of fans and can't wait for the day when her subscriber count reaches the one million mark. And when she is offered a high school internship at On Trend Magazine, she figures that this could be the make it or break it moment.
But sometimes your dream job isn't all that it seems. Her editor is only interested in promoting junk products, and her boss in the Hair and Makeup department introduces her to the larger world of makeup artistry, making her wonder if making tutorials online is all she is meant to do. To top it all off, when the magazine's feature subject, musician Tyler Lance, turns his broodingly handsome smile her way, falling for him could mean losing her fans, forcing her to make a decision: her YouTube life or her real life?
Fans of Zoella's Girl Online will fall right into the world of this YA The Devil Wears Prada and stay hooked from the first blush to the last glossy kiss.
At First Blush is one of the cutest reads of the year, and it’ll take a mighty, mighty book to beat it for me. It had everything I love in a book – it’s contemporary which is an automatic yay, YouTube which I love because let’s be real: a lot of things go down on YouTube so it’s only right that we can read about YouTuber’s in books, which isn’t really happening too much AND it’s a love story with a rock star. CAN I GET A HURRAY? I absolutely love books about famous people. Some will scoff and say as if a normal girl can fall in love with a rockstar BUT IT HAPPENS ALL THE DAMN TIME. Famous people are, at the end of the day, just people, too. *Swooning*
At First Blush is also about make-up, of which I know diddly squat. I’m learning all the time, and I have more make-up now at 26 than I’ve ever had in my life, and I’m learning how to contour and conceal and all that other stuff to make you look good and even though I am literally no good at it, I like it. I like how make-up makes me look so what the hell? I admire girls like Lacey, who can put on make-up like it’s no big deal – I see all these crazy make-up photos on Facebook and I just have the most insane amount of envy because I can’t even do the basics. I suck at liquid liner! But I know it takes practice, it still doesn’t stop me from wanting Lacey with me every second of every day as my own, personal make-up guru.
I absolutely loved Lacey. She’s the perfect narrator – she has her head screwed on – you have to! To get to so many subs on YouTube, to get an internernship at hot magazine On Trend, and I really liked her. She came across was warm, smart, funny, and a tad naive. Because she does tend to let people walk all over her – her parents needed a real dressing down for everything they put on her shoulders, but the good thing is that IS addressed. Her best friend Cynthia gets on her own internship and forgets Lacey exists, but, again, it IS addressed. So a lot of my issues with Lacey’s character were addressed, but also, I kinda understand them because I am Lacey in lots of ways. I don’t like confrontation, I actively AVOID confrontation, in fact. So I could see why she let people run over her, because it’s SO easy to, when you don’t know how to stand up for yourself.
The whole Tyler/Lacey thing made me so indescribably happy. I read a review that says Tyler is basically a fictional Justin Bieber. Oh, please. As if. That is so incredibly inaccurate. Tyler is a bit of a jerk, at first. Come on! You’ve grown up with everyone catering to your every whim, you’re going to be a teensy bit spoilt, but the more we got to know the real Tyler, the better he became and he was just incredible. All of his scenes with Lacey made me indescribably happy, because they were just so cute! The chemistry was dripping off the page, and I was just shipping so hard for them, man. It’s why I LOVE romance because if an author does it right (as Beth Ellyn Summer has), it can be incredible.
Probably the best bit about At First Blush, excluding anything involving Tyler/Lacey because that’s automatically the best, was the look into the life of a YouTuber. It isn’t all fantastic. It can be time-consuming, as any hobby can. But that added pressure, of reading comments from subscribers? That’s tough. I couldn’t do it. So I appreciated seeing how YouTube changed Lacey’s life, good and bad. It’s tough. I struggle just to type up my reviews, through sheer laziness, never mind shooting, editing and uploading videos three or five days per week. That takes some serious dedication, and it’s not all rosy. I liked how we saw Lacey grow up, as the book progressed, how that Glass Cube contract maybe wasn’t the answer to all of Lacey’s prayers, like she thought it would be.
I genuinely loved this book so hard. It just had everything that I love, all wrapped up in a delightful package. The romance, the plot, the whole peeking behind the scenes of what it is to be famous, the characters, it all just added up to such a brilliant read. So much so that I put off finishing the book for a day, just so I could be with Tyler and Lacey and Kendall and Cynthia for that little bit longer, even though I knew the worst was likely to come, in terms of the plot. I just wanted to be wrapped up in this book for that extra day. Beth Ellyn Summer is a brilliant new YA writer, she just gets what it’s like to be a teen and I freaking lapped it up.