Estelle Laure - This Raging LightExpected Publication: December 22, 2015 by HMH Books for Young Readers
Genres: Contemporary, Realistic Fiction, Young Adult
Find on: Amazon, Goodreads, Book Depository
Her dad went crazy. Her mom left town. She has bills to pay and a little sister to look after. Now is not the time for level-headed seventeen-year-old Lucille to fall in love. But love—messy, inconvenient love—is what she's about to experience when she falls for Digby Jones, her best friend's brother. With blazing longing that builds to a fever pitch, Estelle Laure's soulful debut will keep readers hooked and hoping until the very last page.
Okay, I liked this, but I wasn’t blown away. I didn’t cry or anything. For a debut, it’s exceptionally well-written, which definitely should be noted. There’s even a Lifetime movie I’m quite fond of with a similar plotline. (Gracie’s Choice, anyone?)
Lucille, our MC, is thoroughly blindsided after her mother disappears, leaving only a useless note behind, thus forcing her to head the household and singlehandedly raise her little sister alone. Instead of collapsing under the pressure, Lucille tackles her problems head-on. She maintains the bills, parents her little sister, Wren, best she can, and eventually gets a job to support them both. Their father, who is sort-of a mental case, isn't too much in the picture, so Lucille divulges her inside trysts to her best friend, Eden, and her twin brother (and secret crush), Digby.
But here’s the thing. The synopsis bragged about a romance. Yes, it was cute at times. And as I said, masterly-written, but Digby cheated on his girlfriend with Lucille. Honestly, how is that justifiable? Plus, it bothered me how she was in the middle of this shit situation, yet all she wanted to do was makeout. Like, really? Get your life together. Get away from Digby’s toxic ass and take care of your sister. Damn.
For the most part, though, I did like Lucille. Her relationships with her sister, Wren, and best friend, Eden, were certainly special ones, and I liked how she didn’t become a pathetic sobby mess whenever an obstacle was thrown her way. The ending was semi-gladdening, too, despite the mild cheese.
Overall, pretty outstanding. I’ll definitely look forward to Laure’s next piece. Make sure to check this one out, though.