Disclaimer: I received this ARC for free from the publisher Harper Collins in exchange for an honest review. However, this fact does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Bettina Vasilis can hardly believe it when basketball star Brady Cullen asks her out, and she just about faints when her strict father actually approves of him.
But when school starts up again, Brady changes. What happened to the sweet boy she fell in love with? Then she meets a smoldering guy in his twenties, and this “cowboy” is everything Brady is not—gentle, caring, and interested in getting to know the real Bettina.
Bettina knows that breaking up with Brady would mean giving up her freedom—and that it would be inappropriate for anything to happen between her and Cowboy. Still, she can’t help that she longs for the scent of his auto shop whenever she’s anywhere else.
When tragedy strikes, Bettina must tell her family the truth—and kiss goodbye the things she thought she knew about herself and the men in her life.
Leslie Connor has written a lyrical, heartbreaking, and ultimately hopeful story about family, romance, and the immense power of love.
I haven’t heard anything about this book, but the summary intrigued me and thus, I requested it because I was in the mood for a contemporary romance.
Well, it wasn’t one of these cute and fluffy novels that you read just for entertainment, but I knew that, because the synopsis implied that the story would be heartbreaking. Still, I wasn’t expecting that ending, not at all.
I just thought that some secrets would be revealed, that Bettina would have to choose between ‘Cowboy’ and Brady, but the story dealt with so much more.
The Things You Kiss Goodbye deals with physical abuse in the first place, and I definitely didn’t expect that. It also deals with death and with what it means to have parents who are overprotective and old-fashioned.
Thus, the novel is so much more than just a cute romance because it discusses such heavy topics. Of course there’s also romance in it – the friendship between Bettina and ‘Cowboy’ is really sweet and I really liked how it evolved.
I really liked the characters in this book, but I just couldn’t understand why Bettina didn’t fight back. However, since I haven’t been in such a situation, I cannot say what I would have done in her place because one behaves differently in various situations.
The ending wasn’t to my liking because it was sad and I really didn’t understand why the author has chosen to end her story in such a way.
Nonetheless, I still enjoyed The Things You Kiss Goodbye because it dealt with serious matters and I really like it when books discuss such issues since it makes you feel for the protagonists and it makes you think about certain things. The novel is very emotional and sad, and it deals with so much more than just first love.
3.5 out of 5 stars
Note: I would like to thank Harper Collins for sending me this exciting review copy!