Friday, August 08, 2014

Review: A Little Something Different by Sandy Hall

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Review: A Little Something Different by Sandy Hall
A Little Something Different
Sandy Hall
Genre: Contemporary, Romance, YA
Publication date: August 26th 2014
by Swoon Reads

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The creative writing teacher, the delivery guy, the local Starbucks baristas, his best friend, her roommate, and the squirrel in the park all have one thing in common—they believe that Gabe and Lea should get together. Lea and Gabe are in the same creative writing class. They get the same pop culture references, order the same Chinese food, and hang out in the same places. Unfortunately, Lea is reserved, Gabe has issues, and despite their initial mutual crush, it looks like they are never going to work things out. But somehow even when nothing is going on, something is happening between them, and everyone can see it. Their creative writing teacher pushes them together. The baristas at Starbucks watch their relationship like a TV show. Their bus driver tells his wife about them. The waitress at the diner automatically seats them together. Even the squirrel who lives on the college green believes in their relationship.

Surely Gabe and Lea will figure out that they are meant to be together....
-A copy was provided by Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group for review-

Awww! What a cute and sweet read. A Little Something Different is exactly that – a romance story that is different from any I’ve read before, and one that leaves you with a silly smile on your face. The perfect rainy-day read, that’s for sure!

In short, this is a love story about two people who keep misreading each other. One is extremely shy, the other is quiet and reluctant, not realizing they’re both into each other. What makes this book unique, though, is the way it’s told. We don’t go into this story with the perspective of our main characters, but rather everyone around them, even including a squirrel and a bench who, unsurprisingly, talks a lot about butts. The number of perspectives is at a whopping 14, rotating every page or two. It may sounds like a lot, but the flow is remarkably smooth and easy to read throughout. We’re meant to keep track of the two lovebirds, not the characters whose perspectives we’re given, so it avoids being disjointing or overwhelming.

So many perspectives was actually fun in this case, too, because we got to see this romance unfolds via several point-of-views and different mindsets. So many people were rooting for them and noticing their attraction and chemistry, that it made you see it too. The downfall of not getting the main characters’ POV is that I felt as if I was kept at arm’s length – which came to no surprise. There were no toe-curling bits or anything very intense, emotionally, but it was still full of smiles and “aww” moments. There’s also a good dose of humour thrown in.

I did have a few, albeit small, gripes. This may sound like a weird one at first, but sometimes, it felt as if it was too much about the romance. And I mean, all the time. We couldn’t read even one paragraph without it being about them two; no matter the perspective, there was never any side-joke or comment that were not all about Gabe and Lea. It was obsessive-like. Some voices were also more realistic than others. Victor, for instance, was inconsistent, and he was a character used for convenience, when needed. Lastly, Gabe was built as a bit of a mysterious character with some kind of secret. One that affected his daily life and self-confidence, that much was obvious. What it ended up being was a tad underwhelming. I felt as if he made a huge deal out of nothing. Maybe getting to know him and how he personally felt about it all would have helped, but seeing as it was fixed so easily and “invisibly”, I don’t get why he waited so long.

Whenever you’re in the mood for a cute, short, and happy read, A Little Something Different is the perfect lighthearted book. It’s full of romance and teen awkwardness, and the writing style promises a fun and original reading experience!

4 Stars
4 Hot Espressos

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Canadian blogger, wife, mother, coffee lover, and sarcastic at heart! She has had a love for all things bookish since before Amazon and eReaders existed *le gasp*. You can also find her organizing tours and other fun things at Xpresso Book Tours.
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24 Responses to “Review: A Little Something Different by Sandy Hall”

  1. Carmel @ Rabid Reads

    I love it when authors manage to put their own spin on romance, and from your review I gather that Sandy Hall does exactly that. This book is cute AND short you say—now you’re talking! Happy Friday, Giselle!

  2. Nick @ Nick's Book Blog

    Everyone has been raving about how adorable this book is and I can’t wait to read it myself. I was initially worried about the thousands of POVs, but it seems to be working for everyone and I think I could really enjoy it.
    I understand why you may have been slightly frustrated though. I know you’re one reader who likes books to have a bit more than just romance. I’m like that too, so I’m going to keep that in mind.
    Lovely review, Giselle! 🙂

  3. Faye D'Social Potato

    That’s kinda disconcerting, to have romance in every chapter, every POV, every page, EVERY FRICKING PARAGRAPH! I think that would have drove my quite insane to be honest, although I am very intrigued by a romance blossoming between two introverts. A shy and a quiet one? This screams like a manga in the making, haha!

  4. Soma Rostam

    WOW! I have been hearing so many good things about this book and the bench and the squirrel are what interest me the MOST (obviously!) 😛
    I do LOVE the cover and the blurb, too. This sounds like just my type of read
    GREAT review, Giselle 🙂
    Your reader,
    Soma R.

  5. Renae @ Respiring Thoughts

    I totally love the idea of a romance told from the perspective of innocent bystanders (or not-so-innocent, in the case of the creative writing professor). That is such a cute idea, and it sounds like Hall has really managed to pull it off here.

    Although, like you said, this does sound like a LOT of romance for one book. *wrinkles nose* Still, though, it could be really fun, just for one book.

  6. Kimber @ The Book Ramble

    Been really looking forward to this book! I really thought the idea of the multiple perspectives would set it apart from other books. It’s a bit disappointing to hear that it is so romance focused and there’s not a whole lot else. But, I’m glad you think it’s still enjoyable.
    Great review!

  7. Sarah P.

    This book sounds so cute. I’ve heard of the multiple POVs and it’s such an interesting way of telling the story. I don’t think I would really mind if it was entirely about the romance, since that is exactly how the book is being marketed, but I’m kind of apprehensive that I would feel the same way that you did. Anyway, I would surely keep this in mind, whenever I need something fun and light. Lovely review, Giselle!

  8. Jeann @ Happy Indulgence

    Wow, this surely sounds like a super unique read and I love how it’s told from the perspective of things and people around them! I think I’d really enjoy this when I pick it up, it sounds adorable and refreshing. Lovely review Giselle!

  9. Melliane

    Oh I’m in love with the cover! I didn’t know this one but I’m glad that it’s as cute as it looks like it is. Thanks for introducing me to the book! Great review!

  10. czai

    cute romance + teen awkwardness + lighthearted book… I love the many perspectives and just how you talk about it really makes me more excited for this!!

  11. Emily @ Books & Cleverness

    So glad you enjoyed this one! I really liked it as well and I’m so happy that this was the first Swoon Reads book to get chosen for publication! Definitely looking forward to reading more by Sandy Hall. Great review! 🙂

  12. Kayla @ The Thousand Lives

    It seems like this is the general consensus for the book! At least all the reviews are consistent 😛 I’ll make sure to read it on a day when I want romance, and nothing else. I could use a squee-worthy book right now <3 Although the 14 POVs concerns me… but if they're done well, I think I'll get over it 🙂

  13. Amber

    I just “discovered” this book the other day and it quickly made my To-be purchased list. I think I’ll like the different point of views since that’s not very common.

  14. Chyna @ Lite-Rate-Ture

    There’s a freakin bench that has its own perspective? WOAH! Waaaay cool! I just had my local bookstore reserve me a copy so I’m looking forward to reading this book.

    I was drooling because of the beautiful cover design of the novel, it looks so adorable and the blurb gave that fluffy vibe. HAHA Great review, love.

  15. Dea S.

    I’ve been wanting to read this the fist I came across it on Goodreads. It’s exactly my type of story to read between heavy books: cute and fun and will you grinning after the last page. Your review makes me want it even more! I’m so happy liked this, Giselle! And beautiful review, as always. 🙂