I think I’m going to love this young adult book series. I just read the first book in the Willow Creek series, Last to Know by Micalea Smeltzer. There’s no cliffie, but it definitely left me wanting to one click for the next book, which isn’t out until this April!? Ugh. First a quote to get you going….
“Loving you is my greatest adventure. Nothing else means anything without you.” Maddox Wade #Swoonworthy
The story starts with Emma and her bestie Sadie going to a fair where the band, Willow Creek, is playing. Sadie is is super excited to see them and Emma couldn’t care less. Sadie is bubbly, flirtatious, and a bit unreliable. She’s into popular music and partying. Emma is the opposite. She loves to read (hmm….I like this girl!) and listen to classical music. She’s not outgoing and is pretty much a home body. While Sadie runs off to watch the band, Emma stays behind in another spot at the fair and reads. She’s shy and just generally is trying not to be noticed. Sadie kinda disappears. The concert ends and she never comes to get Emma. Thus, the unreliability factor I spoke of at the top. Along comes a boy named Maddox (he’s 19 and Emma is 17) and he strikes up a conversation. He’s sweaty, good looking and very charming. Emma can’t quite figure him out, and why he’s talking to her of all people. She’s attractive and smart, but has never thought of herself as someone that gets that kind of attention. They, in an awkward way, hit it off and she agrees to a date. The plot thickens…
We should all have a Maddox in our life! Maddox is perfect. Really. Perfect. I hope the future Mr. Booknista has his finer qualities. He commences on giving Emma the absolute best summer ever. They have a picnic on their first day and get arrested for swimming in a duck pond. Trust me, it’s funny and quite the adventure. They ride a motorcycle, they go “swimming” in a pool filled with plastic balls and they skydive. They fall in love. Hopelessly, sweetly, and in the best possible way they are soul mates. Now, Emma is the daughter of a single mom. Her dad was an angry alcoholic and left them years ago. Maddox has a twin brother, Matthias, and they were abused before being placed in a loving foster family. Matthias is a challenge…as my favorite teacher would say. He’s cranky, mean and generally a real downer. So, you get it…Maddox and Emma are both a bit damaged and have that in common. Throughout their dating, Maddox makes it clear that music is a big part of his life. Emma, as it turns out, is actually an amazing musician and plays the piano. She was something of a child prodigy. He plays the drums, sings a little and writes songs. He has a group of guys he hangs out with, including his brother. Something feels off to Emma but she’s not sure what. She’s in love, but can’t quite figure out why the guys don’t seem to have jobs and always wear hats when they go out and get all weird when she mentions the band Willow Creek. #Baffling
On Emma’s 18th birthday, Maddox surprises her with an entire night of presents and sweet moments. They admit that they love each other (WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD).
Emma gives him her virginity and she has no regrets. Let me say, it was really beautiful. The scene itself was not too detailed and it was clear that they had something special. And, I swooned again.
You get it, they have this amazing date and the future looks bright and happy. The next day Sadie shares a celebrity magazine with Emma and inside there is a picture of Maddox and Emma together. Because, unbeknownst to Emma, Maddox is a big time rock star with the band Willow Creek. The same band that headlined at the fair. Sadie is a huge fan of their music and is pissed that Emma didn’t tell her who she was dating. Emma didn’t know. Oops! Maddox left out that tiny detail during all of their crazy fun adventures and smexy times. She feels betrayed. He lied to her. And well, you can imagine how used she feels. She breaks up with him in true dramatic fashion. He has one of the best groveling scenes of all time. I would’ve forgiven him ASAP. I’m a sucker for the deep soul wrenching apologies and declarations of love. But, not Emma. #HeartOfStone
And that’s where I’ll leave it. You’ll have to read the book to see the conclusion. I liked Maddox a lot. I feel like guys should read this book to get some pointers on how to win over the girl of their dreams. He’s funny, sweet and there’s a hedgehog that plays a prominent role. Intrigued? Right up until the lying part, I was all in. I was totally #TeamMaddox. I liked the guys he was friends with and am excited to read their future stories. The only thing that didn’t ring quite so true with me was the sort of insta-love attraction he had with Emma at the fair. He literally just saw her and stuck to her, really poured on the charm. She wasn’t so interesting to me at the beginning. Not in a way that would attract the attention of this guy. Also, she was SO innocent. Blushing and nervous with him, not admitting that they were dating, when so clearly they were. I just don’t see most girls acting that way. It’s a minor thing, and didn’t detract from the story. I still devoured it. I wish the next book was coming out sooner. I can’t wait to read about brother Matthias. #Impatient
I give this an A! Grab it for .99 now. Great bargain for a great book.