Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Never Always Sometimes by Adi Alsaid

Never Always Sometimes by Adi Alsaid

Review by Lauren

Source: copy from Netgalley; all opinions are my own

Official Summary: Best friends Dave and Julia were determined to never be cliché high school kids—the ones who sit at the same lunch table every day, dissecting the drama from homeroom and plotting their campaigns for prom king and queen. They even wrote their own Never List of everything they vowed they'd never, ever do in high school.

Some of the rules have been easy to follow, like #5, never die your hair a color of the rainbow, or #7, never hook up with a teacher. But Dave has a secret: he's broken rule #8, never pine silently after someone for the entirety of high school. It's either that or break rule #10, never date your best friend. Dave has loved Julia for as long as he can remember.

Julia is beautiful, wild and impetuous. So when she suggests they do every Never on the list, Dave is happy to play along. He even dyes his hair an unfortunate shade of green. It starts as a joke, but then a funny thing happens: Dave and Julia discover that by skipping the clichés, they've actually been missing out on high school. And maybe even on love.

Review: When I first started this book, I was a little wary because it wasn't quite grabbing me. However, it didn't take long before I really fell for the characters and was taken on a journey with Dave and Julia. What I really loved about these two characters is their friendship and banter. Yes, Dave has been silently in love with Julia for years, but that doesn't mean they have an awkward or stilted friendship. On the contrary, they are each others' best friends. They are also each others' only friends, so when Julia decides to actually do all the things they wrote on the Never list before starting high school, it's not long before they begin to socialize with other people.

Julia is fun, outgoing, and really witty. She loves being friends with Dave and she sees the Never list as something fun to do before graduation. Dave goes along with the idea, enjoying the passion and amusement that Julia brings along on her quest to dye her hair pink and seduce her math teacher. Dave ends up meeting other people and realizing that high school was not this big cliche that him and Julia always thought. What has he missed out on? The Never list is a good thing for Dave, in the end, because it brings him out of his shell a bit and he begins to experience more. As for Julia, she seems to be enjoying the Never list, but she's not entirely ready for a big change to occur. It's more fun for her, and the difference in opinion does affect their friendship as the book goes on.

Never Always Sometimes could have followed a typical high school story cliche, the opposite of what Dave and Julia think they want, but it doesn't. Sure, there are things you could point at and say "that's a cliche" but it often just means it's true. These things happen. Overall though, I think this was a really well done contemporary novel.

Sorry for the lack of commenting! I have a few things scheduled, but I need to get a new computer soon and therefore, there might be a few days of nothing or lack of comments on my part. I will try and do my best, but if I'm a bit invisible in the next week, you now know why! Please comment though and I'll get back to you soon! Also, be sure to check out all the posts over at Let's Get Beyond Tolerance.


Erika Sorocco said...

The concept of this book sounds interesting, but I'm so over romances lately that I don't think I'll be picking it up.


Krysten Quiles said...

Ooooooh I want to read this!

Krysten @ Why Girls Are Weird

Kindlemom said...

Lots of people are loving this one, I'm glad you did as well. It does sound like it was well written and put together.
Great review!

Medeia Sharif said...

This looks interesting. I have other NetGalley books on queue on my Kindle, but I'll see if I can get this one.

Brandi Kosiner said...

Fun, outgoing and witty sounds great in the main character

Alise said...

We are review twins! Looks like we felt the same way about this one, it didn't grab me immediately but I did fall for the characters eventually.

Diva Booknerd said...

I had the same feeling about his previous book, Sometimes Never Sometimes Always I think it was, I really enjoyed it, but it was missing that emotional connection and character development for me. The premise reminds me a little of Paper Towns actually, that quirky romance type adventure. Lovely review Lauren and glad you enjoyed this for the most part <3 <3

Lindy Gomez said...

I love stories that have a strong friendship as the foundation. Dave and Julia sound like great characters as well. I'm glad that even though the story didn't initially grab you, you enjoyed it :) Great Review!

Lindy@ A Bookish Escape

Carla N said...

Aww this sounds incredibly sweet and so entertaining! Thanks for sharing, I might give this a try! :D

Lipstick and Mocha

Karen said...

I have this one on my TBR pile. Sounds like a fun one.

Karen @For What It's Worth

Adriana Garcia said...

Let the cuteness ensue. I feel like the summary should have ended with that.

I respect that Dave doesn't act weird towards Julia throughout their friendship. I don't like it when a girl doesn't want to be with a guy and they have to act like an idiot afterwards. You don't own her just because she's a girl and your friend. That might have been off topic... Anyway, this book seems to be made for me. Love it. Thanks for he review (:

Kirsty-Marie Jones said...

Glad you enjoyed this one a lot better than I did, the only thing I liked about it was the ending, pretty much saved it from being a total disaster for me. Just couldn't deal with the characters at all.