*I’d like to thank the Publisher for providing an ARC of this book through Netgalley*
Pippa Wyndham is a top cellist―she’d never settle for anything less. Determined to get into the nation’s most prestigious music college, nothing’s going to stand in her way . . . Until her senior year of high school when a new guy from a fancy New York conservatory transfers to her school.
Declan Brogan’s cocky, and he knows how amazing he is at the cello. He has every intention of knocking Pippa out of first chair and showing her who really belongs on top. Forced together when assigned a duet, their personal competition and mutual dislike transform into a teasing friendship.
Torn between her childhood crush and the boy who threatens her dreams, Pippa finds herself at risk of losing her best friend, her future, and the boy who makes her heart melt. Struggling to make things right, Pippa discovers that sometimes the thing you want the most doesn’t always end up being the thing you need.
It’s books like these that make me wonder if I’ve become too old for high school stories.
First things first – the cover and the synopsis made me think that music would be play an important role. I was wrong. Music was simply used as a plot device for Pippa having to spend time with Declan. It was also an excuse for Pippa’s sudden outbursts about her future and Declan being a threat to her.
Sure, we read about them playing cello and getting lost in it. Pippa tells us that music means everything to her. We also see her say that she gets lost in the music when Declan plays. Except, there’s only her talking and thinking about music. We read about her love for music, but we don’t feel it.
Look, I have no problem with music being used as a plot device. But if I am about to read about a protagonist whose whole life is about music, it’s not wrong for me to expect more than just casual and unfeeling proclamations about what music means to her, right?
Don’t even get me started on the love triangle (or triangles, rather). Pippa has a serious crush on Noah, her brother’s best friend. She starts off hating Declan, her new choir rival. And then suddenly after playing music together alone a couple of times, she starts to have feelings for him too? And we don’t even get any proper insight into what causes this shift in her feelings. No, we see her suddenly feeling jealous of her friend Quinn who goes out with Declan. So, out of the blue, we see two boys fighting for Pippa.
And then we have Quinn who is confused between Philip, Pippa’s brother and Declan, for both of whom she suddenly starts having feelings. And she shares her confusion with Pippa. The same Pippa whose brother is one of the two guys. The same Pippa on whom Quinn knows the other guy to have a certain serious crush on. These two friends sure had an interesting few weeks with their topsy-turvy feelings.
A lot of other things happen. But I think I was long past caring at that point.
Pippa was a superficial character that I couldn’t muster a single feeling for, at any point of the book. Quinn was not any better. Declan was probably the only saving grace. He was sweet and the only consistent character throughout. A waste, really.
My Rating: ★★☆☆☆