18 October 2016

Review #538: The Boy Is Back (Boy, #4) by Meg Cabot

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

“The course of true love never did run smooth.”

----William Shakespeare

Meg Cabot, #1 New York Times bestselling author, is back with her popular Boy series and yet once again the author has successfully enlightened the spark between two old flames in Cabot's signature style flair, complete with laughter, humor, a bit of pain and lots of emotions, that only ensure that whoever picks up a copy of her book is sure to have a good time. The Boy is Back is centered around a celebrated golf player who returns back to his hometown following a scandal about his parents and there he once again come face to face with his first love, who he has been avoiding for the past 10 years.


In this brand-new novel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Meg Cabot, a scandal brings a young man back home to the small town, crazy family, and first love he left behind.

Reed Stewart thought he’d left all his small town troubles—including a broken heart—behind when he ditched tiny Bloomville, Indiana, ten years ago to become rich and famous on the professional golf circuit. Then one tiny post on the Internet causes all of those troubles to return . . . with a vengeance.

Becky Flowers has worked hard to build her successful senior relocation business, but she’s worked even harder to forget Reed Stewart ever existed. She has absolutely no intention of seeing him when he returns—until his family hires her to save his parents.

Now Reed and Becky can’t avoid one another—or the memories of that one fateful night. And soon everything they thought they knew about themselves (and each other) has been turned upside down, and they—and the entire town of Bloomville—might never be the same, all because The Boy Is Back.

Reed Stewart is back in Bloomville, the small town in Indiana, which he painfully left 10 years ago in order to forget about his heart break and also he was kicked out by his father following a tragic accident. Reed is all set to save his parents' name and also to move them to a retirement facility where they can be taken care of, following an awkward scandal that has apparently gone viral on the Internet. Although Reed is backed by his brother and his sister-in-law, he is bit scared to come across his old love whom he left behind all those years ago to become a professional golf player.

Becky Flowers has managed to make her heart understand that Reed is gone and that it is time to move on. Although she is in a stable relationship with a wine shop owner, yet her heart still holds back the sweet memories that she shared with Reed. And not to mention, when Reed's sister hires Becky to help her in laws stuffs to relocate, Becky jumps at the opportunity, who herself has inherited her father's business of moving and relocating household goods and stuffs. Little did Becky had any idea on how to react in front of Reed, when she comes face-to-face with him, all the while her emotions are running wild. But no matter what, Becky needs to maintain a professional contact with Reed, even though she is constantly being forced by her sister, mother and her best friend to rekindle the spark between Reed and Becky. But can they?

Meg Cabot is a queen when it comes to creating some cheesy melodramatic chick-lit stories that are hilarious and extremely heart touching. Unfortunately, The Boy is Back is mildly funny, moreover, it feels like the fun is force-fed by the characters, who also try to be weird and hilarious in a dramatic way. The one unique thing about this book is the way the story has been unfolded by the author through text messages, email threads, online reviews and journal entries, sometimes images too show up amidst the light heart-hearted communication among the characters. Cheesy drama aren't my forte yet I grabbed this book on the pretext that I'm gonna have a good time, no matter what. After all, sometimes, clichés are necessary to make the readers have faith in fairy tales, otherwise, fairy tales would fade into nothing.

The author's writing style is simple, articulate and something easy to comprehend with, perfectly laced with emotions, hilarious remarks and moments to reflect a sweet and romantic flair. The narrative is often sketchy, as the story is unfolded in the form of text messages and emails, hence the scenes that have already happened are narrated or discussed among the characters, which will give a brief idea to the readers about such scenes. Hence descriptions are lacking from the scenes, and also the depth is missing from those, that will leave the readers pretty clueless about the importance of the events and the scenes. The pacing is swift, as it is very easy and quick to read the book through short sentences.

And if any reader is looking for cheesy romantic story, then he/she must grab a copy of this book, as when Meg Cabot creates a magical romance between two old flames. The spark between the two central characters is well concocted by the author as they rediscover one another after a decade, where they learn new truths and secrets about one another, all the while forgiving one another for their broken past. The emotional flow among the two characters is strong, evocative and extremely compassionate, that will make the readers fall for the idea of love all over again. So on a long, lonely afternoon, this book can be your companion that holds the power to feel for your lost love yet one more time. The feelings are very much real and the readers will find it easy to contemplate with the demeanor of the two characters, who in the beginning feels scared to re-approach one another with their honest feelings.

Although the characters lack realism, layers and shades from their behavior thereby leaving them look vague in the eyes of the readers. The characters fail on being trying to look funny, yet somehow the love story will beg the readers to stay glued to the story line. The main characters are crafted out someone who is very plain, straightforward and okayish type, without much flair, passion or diversity in their demeanor. The character development lacked terribly.

So to sum up my review, I would not highly recommend this novel to anyone, yet anybody who enjoys reading clichéd love stories can easily find this novel delectable and compelling enough to keep themselves engaged through out the story line.

Verdict: A sweet, tender and a bit clichéd and typical Cabot-styled love story.

Courtesy: Thanks to the publishers from Harper Collins India for giving me an opportunity to read and review this book.

Author Info:
Meg Cabot was born on February 1, 1967, during the Chinese astrological year of the Fire Horse, a notoriously unlucky sign. Fortunately she grew up in Bloomington, Indiana, where few people were aware of the stigma of being a fire horse -- at least until Meg became a teenager, when she flunked freshman Algebra twice, then decided to cut her own bangs. After six years as an undergrad at Indiana University, Meg moved to New York City (in the middle of a sanitation worker strike) to pursue a career as an illustrator, at which she failed miserably, forcing her to turn to her favorite hobby--writing novels--for emotional succor. She worked various jobs to pay the rent, including a decade-long stint as the assistant manager of a 700 bed freshmen dormitory at NYU, a position she still occasionally misses.
She is now the author of nearly fifty books for both adults and teens, selling fifteen million copies worldwide, many of which have been #1 New York Times bestsellers, most notably The Princess Diaries series, which is currently being published in over 38 countries, and was made into two hit movies by Disney. In addition, Meg wrote the Mediator and 1-800-Where-R-You? series (on which the television series, Missing, was based), two All-American Girl books, Teen Idol, Avalon High, How to Be Popular, Pants on Fire, Jinx, a series of novels written entirely in email format (Boy Next Door, Boy Meets Girl, and Every Boy's Got One), a mystery series (Size 12 Is Not Fat/ Size 14 Is Not Fat Either/Big Boned), and a chick-lit series called Queen of Babble.
Meg is now writing a new children's series called Allie Finkle's Rules for Girls. Her new paranormal series, Abandon, debuts in Summer of 2011.
Meg currently divides her time between Key West, Indiana, and New York City with a primary cat (one-eyed Henrietta), various back-up cats, and her husband, who doesn't know he married a fire horse. Please don't tell him.
Visit her here

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