Wednesday, 11 June 2014
Review: Blue by Lisa Glass
Format: Paperback / eBook
Released: June 5th, 2014
Surfing is sixteen-year-old Iris's world, and when the ultra-talented Zeke walks into her life, it soon becomes her passion. Over one amazing summer, as she is drawn into his sphere, she experiences love, new friendships, but also loss, with an intensity she never dreamed of. But is Zeke all he seems? What hides beneath his glamorous and mysterious past? When Iris decides to try for her own surfing success, just as her ex-boyfriend comes back into her life, she will test her talent, and her feelings for Zeke, to the limit...
Blue immediately caught my eye when I saw the cover. It screams summer, sea and romance, and that's exactly what you get within its pages. I fell in love with it after only a couple of chapters and soon found myself swept away like a rogue wave. I'm not at all interested in surfing or travelling, but Blue made me actually care about these things and now I might even be tempted to one day visit the featured locations!
Set in Newquay in Cornwall, England, Blue is the perfect YA summer romance. There's blue skies, surfing, blonde-haired boys and all the glitz and glamour associated with living by the sea. Iris is sixteen-years-old and a keen surfer, just about to leave school and working in a shop on the side. At a yoga class she meets Zeke, blonde, tanned and a lot more than meets the eye. His entire life is surfing, until he meets Iris and a whirlwind romance consumes them both.
Iris and Zeke are both brilliant characters, Zeke especially. He's not your typical perfect beach boy, and he has an awful lot going on both in the background and in his past. He's dealing with a lot of difficult, mature stuff and trying to be a normal teenager at the same time. The kind of teenager who falls for a girl and gets to be who he wants to be with her, rather than somebody else's perceived notion of the real Zeke. Iris gets him, just like she gets surfing and how it can take over your life. She understands Zeke's flaws and his fears, and she helps him just as much as he helps her. It's an eye-opening summer for both of these two, and both change throughout the course of their time spent together. It's pretty realistic actually, which is always a relief - there's no insta-love here, instead there's a long, arduous cycle of events that ultimately lead to two people making changes and sacrifices and figuring out their next steps.
It's rare that a YA romance this good ends up being written by a UK author - the US always seem so much better at this genre of fiction - but Blue completely made me eat my words and is quite possibly the best British book of its kind. It reminds me of Julia Green's novels, with the summery settings and layered, deep characters that draw me in and wish I liked the sun.
Blue surprised me, it really did. I thought I'd like it but I had no idea I'd like it as much as I did. It consumed me for the day I spent reading it, and I'm still wishing I could read the sequel right now. Instead there's a long wait until it's published in 2015, but I'm hoping that Lisa Glass will pull off yet another brilliant YA read. If you like good romantic, escapist YA fiction, not to mention a hot boy who surfs, then Blue needs to be on your bookshelf as soon as possible. Now is the perfect time to visit Newquay and its sun, sea and surf!