Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Review of Flat Out Celeste by Jessica Park

Leia's Review:

In a literary world overcrowded with billionaire CEO’s and powerful alpha males, Flat-Out Celeste was a breath of fresh air.
As an avid Jessica Park fan, I have been in love with Celeste since Flat-Out Love.  Finding out that she was going to get her own book had me running around like a lunatic. I am so happy to report that in no way, shape, or form did Mrs. Park disappoint! This book was brilliant!

Flat-Out Celeste begins with Celeste as a senior in high school.  Even at 18, Celeste still has her oddities.  Although she is no longer carrying around Flat Finn, she has closed herself off from interaction with other students.  Submersed in her studies and planning her attendance to an Ivy League School, socializing isn’t something that is on the top of her priority list – especially considering prior events of not-so-nice students.

Celeste receives an email from Justin, the reach-out student for Barton College – a no name college in San Diego that isn’t even on her radar.  After an inbox overflow of random emails from Justin, Celeste decides to respond.  This sparks a back and forth “pen-pal” relationship between the two.  Celeste deems this relationship safe since she has no plans of ever meeting the mysterious Justin….but when he shows up unannounced surprising both family and her suppressed teenage tendencies, Celeste and Justin embark on one of the most loveable romances I have ever had the pleasure of reading.

There are so many reason why I love this book, it would be impossible to list them all.  But just for a minute, I want you to think back – to when you were 15, 16, 17…. however old….. and remember the innocence of just – dating – the butterflies and constant smiles. The immense happiness you experience when hearing or seeing your crush’s name.  The swoonworthy moments you remember, even now as adult.  That is how this entire book felt to me.  It was steady smiles and absolutely heartwarming moments. Pure beauty.

“Why are you nervous?”
“Because I’m going to kiss you, and I better do a good job because I want you to like it.”
“I feel sure that I will.”“How could you know that?” “Because it is you.”

This isn’t just a story of Celeste and Justin’s romance though.  It is so much more.  There is more Matt and Julie – which made my heart swell with joy.  It’s also about Celeste as a person.  Her growing into a beautiful woman and learning to accept the things about herself that society has told her are all wrong.  That’s a hard lesson for anyone to learn.  And I think on some level, everyone experiences that – trying to figure out where you belong and how to be accepted for who you are.  It’s wonderful to see an author celebrate the things that make us different, the things that make up our individuality – whether society accepts them or not.

5 stars just doesn't seem like enough for a book that impacted me so deeply.  I’ve said it before and I will say it again, Jessica Park’s writing is so subtly brilliant.  You don’t even know when it happens, but you soon realize that you are so invested in the lives of these characters that you won’t be complete until they are happy.  I loved every moment of Flat-Out Celeste and I would recommend this series time and again to anyone who would listen.

5 Flat-Out Brilliant Stars!

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