You gotta have one on standby: that perfect summery read for a lazy afternoon in the garden, or on the beach. And even though I would urge you to read Morgan Matson’s ‘The Unexpected Everything’ anytime, anywhere, it really is a great book for this season.
I’ve not read a Matson book before this one and I’m easily made a into a convert. And there’s dogs. Dogs are going to give any book that extra edge, right?Like I said, I’ve not read anything by this author before and I wasn’t sure I was going to gel with her writing style. It’s always a worry when you’re taking on something new, especially when they’re already so popular. Nobody really wants to anything else to add to the “unpopular opinions” tag.
Thank eff that Matson and me are a good match. What instantly struck me was how Dessen-esque the read was. And that is most definitely a compliment. Sarah Dessen is a contemporary queen, so anything to fill the whole between her books is most welcome.
What did I really enjoy about this book?
Dogs – Yup. Let’s get this out of the way. I loved that there were dogs in this story. I loved it even more that Bertie the big ol’ fluff ball had quite a big part for a supporting character. I want a Bertie.
Andie – Made for a good protagonist. I particularly enjoyed how her relationship with her dad was explored and portrayed. Daddy-daughter relationships always get me in books. Analyse that, Freud.
Plot – Plodded along at a steady pace. And this is actually quite a long book at 528 pages, so a well timed plot was key to keeping my interest.
The writing – It was just so easy to sink into. Not much effort required on my part to decipher things, or to read between the lines. The story just washed over me and took me on a pleasant journey.
Mood/tone – I think this book does deal with some important issues. I’m in my twenties and I still don’t really know what to do with myself except that I want to be an author, and I’m forever feeling conflicted over plans I may have already made that fall through, or I change my mind about. So it was really nice to see that kind of conflict in the main character too. That worry about the future thing. But despite that, ‘The Unexpected Everything’ has such a refreshingly light and cheery mood throughout. It was a real delight to read.
What would I have done differently, if it were me?
Names – It’s just a small thing really, but I have this thing about character names. What are the chances, seriously, that you would have a friend group where everyone had an exotic or totally bonkers name? There’s never a “Jane” or “Claire”. It’s like there’s some unspoken competition to have the weirdest names in fiction. Of all time. And it’s not like it makes them any more memorable because sitting here right now I can’t remember for the life of me what Andie’s friends were called. But I remembered “Andie”. Sooo… having a weird name is better than NO name, I guess.
All in all a fab read. Light, summery and very sweet. Just enough angst hanging around the edges to pull on my feels, and a very satisfying end. I enjoyed myself very much and I would recommend this book to anyone! If you’re a contemporary fan that there’s no way this will fail for you.
A very healthy 4/5.
(I also reviewed this book for Maximum Pop! Which can be found right here. Book received from Simon & Schuster with many thanks. Opinions all my own, yo)