“Before this week, I never realized that real-life romance isn’t like the movies. Things don’t have to be so serious and intense all the time. You can have intensely serious feelings for someone and be silly with them. You can go from making out to laughing, and back to making out, and that’s okay.”
Rating: 3.5/5 stars
Thank you to the author for reaching out and offering a review copy in exchange for a honest review!
After her parents’ bitter divorce, family vacations to the Big Island in Hawaii ceased. But across the miles, eighteen-year-old Tegan Rossi remains connected to local Kai Kapule, her best friend from childhood. Now, Tegan finds herself alone and confused about how she got to the Big Island. With no wallet, no cell phone, purse, or plane ticket, Tegan struggles to piece together what happened. She must have come to surprise-visit Kai. Right? As the teens grow even closer, Tegan pushes aside her worries and gets swept away in the vacation of her dreams.
But each morning, Tegan startles awake from nightmares that become more difficult to ignore. Something is eerily amiss. Why is there a strange gap in her memory? Why can’t she reach her parents or friends from home? And what’s with the mysterious hourglass tattoo over her heart?
Kai promises to help Tegan figure out what is going on. But the answers they find only lead to more questions. As the week unfolds, Tegan will experience the magic of first love, the hope of second chances, and the bittersweet joy and grief of being human.
Looking for a new book to get in lost in this summer?
Pack your bags because we’re going to Hawaii for this mystery/romance novel that will keep you on the edge of your seat from start to finish.
What I Liked
🌌Star crossed lovers. I’m usually the super intense enemies to lovers with an extra side of hate type of gal – so this was quite different then my normal romance reads but I really enjoyed it. The week Tegan and Kai get to spend together was so freaking sweet that I never wanted it to end. And knowing (or at least knowing certain parts) of how it was going to end had my heart aching from the very start. This was like childhood best friends to lovers meets star crossed lovers and I loved every single second of it. This also had me feeling super nostalgic about all my beach friends I made as a kid/teenager when my family would go on vacation every year.
🌴 The setting. A large part of me wanted to live inside this book, like dive right in and spend the rest of my life here. I mean, who really wouldn’t want to live in a book that takes place in Hawaii? The author did a great job of making readers feel as though they were right next to Tegan and Kai as they spent their week together and you can definitely tell that a lot of research went into the setting and the local culture as well.
⁉️ What really happened to Tegan? The question we all want the answer to. Unfortunately for me this was spoiled, however, I think that now that the risk of it being spoiled for other readers (see below) is gone it will be something readers really look forward to and is definitely a driving force for this book.
⚠️ Underlying themes. If you think this is just a story about a girl trying to figure out why she had a sudden case of amnesia with a dash of romance think again. This is the type of book that makes you stop and think long after you’ve finished it. It’s a bittersweet story of first love, grief, joy, the cycle of life, and so much more. In other words buckle up, my friends.
What I Didn’t Like
📉Goodreads spoiled the ending. Okay, maybe like half of the ending but it still spoiled the major twist of this story. And I’m not talking about scrolling through reviews and happening to see a spoiler-y review. I’m talking going on Goodreads to add the book to my TBR and the first sentence of the synopsis was the plot twist. Luckily, it’s no longer there but it definitely was a bit of a bummer to know the gist of what was going to happen prior to even opening the book.
💌 Kai’s letters. This is something that I think could have worked for the story had they been a little more important. I truly loved how the story went back and forth between the past and present and gave readers a lot of insight into Tegan and Kai’s relationship/friendship. With Kai’s POV added to the mix in the form of letters it just seemed a bit redundant to the plot. So, I think either the letters or the flipping between the past and present would have worked better for the story but not both.
🔚 So so on the ending. Despite having the big plot twist spoiled I still definitely wanted to stick it out and see how Tegan and Kai’s story would end. For a book that gets real and tackles some deeper themes that really make you stop and think I found the ending to be a little too perfect. While I didn’t outright hate it, I wasn’t head over heels with it either.
All in all, even with the ending getting spoiled for me I still did enjoy my time with this book. For anyone looking for a mystery with a side of romance and just a dash of fantasy elements The Best Week that Never Happened is definitely worth checking out. This is the perfect type of book to take with you to the pool or the beach and get lost in for a few hours!
Until next time,