Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Top Ten by Katie Cotugno

Top Ten
By: Katie Cotugno
Released: October 3, 2017
Source: Edelweiss
Purchase the Book: Amazon
*An advanced reader's copy was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Ryan McCullough and Gabby Hart are the unlikeliest of friends. Introverted, anxious Gabby would rather do literally anything than go to a party. Ryan is a star hockey player who can get any girl he wants—and does, frequently. But against all odds, they became not only friends, but each other’s favorite person. Now, as they face high school graduation, they can’t help but take a moment to reminisce and, in their signature tradition, make a top ten list—counting down the top ten moments of their friendship:
10. Where to begin? Maybe the night we met.
9. Then there was our awkward phase.
8. When you were in love with me but never told me…
7. Those five months we stopped talking were the hardest of my life.
6. Through terrible fights…
5. And emotional makeups.
4. You were there for me when I got my heart broken.
3. …but at times, you were also the one breaking it.
2. Above all, you helped me make sense of the world.
1. Now, as we head off to college—how am I possibly going to live without you?
(Goodreads)


The premise for Top Ten sounded so good and I couldn't wait to read it, but it fell short for me in several ways. I did really like some aspects, but I felt like I didn't start to enjoy this book until the last half.

Gabby and Ryan have been friends since freshman year of high school and now they have just graduated. Their friendship has had many ups and downs through the years and now they are about to go their own separate ways. I loved that both Gabby and Ryan were flawed and realistic characters. Gabby has anxiety and feels really uncomfortable in social situations. Whereas Ryan is the complete opposite and loves parties. The relationship between them was realistic and their differences do cause problems between them at times. However, I felt like I had a difficult time getting a grip on who these characters were and their relationship because of the way the story was told. For more than the first half of the book, Gabby and Ryan came across as flat characters to me.   

The plot was difficult for me to keep track of because of the jumping around to count down the moments of Gabby and Ryan's friendship. I thought I would love the way this story was told, but in reality, I felt really confused while reading. I had trouble piecing together the timeline and I had to keep turning back to see which year the moment I was reading was even taking place in. For the first half of the book, I just struggled to feel invested in the story and almost gave up on this book several times. However, there were a few moments in the last half of the book that I did really enjoy reading and those were the reason that I kept on reading. It was during the last half that I finally felt like the characters and their relationship were starting to click together.

Overall, I liked Top Ten. I felt like I would have probably enjoyed this book even more if it was told in a different style. This storytelling may work for others, but for me personally, it didn't.     
   

My Review:

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