Title: The Promise of Amazing
Author: Robin Constantine
Genre: YA Contemporary
Publication Date: December 31, 2013
Format: Hardcover, 371 Pages
ISBN-10: 0062279483 (HarperTeen)
ISBN-13: 978-0062279484 (HarperTeen)
Reviewed by: Bridget
Wren Caswell is average. Ranked in the middle of her class at Sacred Heart, she’s not popular, but not a social misfit. Wren is the quiet, “good” girl who’s always done what she’s supposed to—only now in her junior year, this passive strategy is backfiring. She wants to change, but doesn’t know how.
Grayson Barrett was the king of St. Gabe’s. Star of the lacrosse team, top of his class, on a fast track to a brilliant future—until he was expelled for being a “term paper pimp.” Now Gray is in a downward spiral and needs to change, but doesn’t know how.
One fateful night their paths cross when Wren, working at her family’s Arthurian-themed catering hall, performs the Heimlich on Gray as he chokes on a cocktail weenie, saving his life literally and figuratively. What follows is the complicated, awkward, hilarious, and tender tale of two teens shedding their pasts, figuring out who they are—and falling in love.
Quick & Dirty: The Promise of Amazing was an adorable story with a good blend of humor and seriousness. It is just one of those stories that you can’t help but fall in love with and thoroughly enjoy reading.
Opening Sentence: “None of you are going to Harvard.”
Wren Caswell is tired of being average. She has always been on the shy side and never really outspoken, but that never seemed to be a problem until now. It is her junior year and it is time to start looking at the future. But when she gets ready to apply for college, she realizes that there is nothing that really stands out about her, nothing that will set her apart from all the other kids applying to college. Her one relationship that she has been in did not go the way she planned and she has decided that it is time for a change. Being the quiet and passive person that she is, all she knows is that stepping out of her box is a lot harder than she ever expected.
Grayson Bennett is your all-around popular guy. He is the star Lacrosse player, a total ladies man, and super smart. But that was all taken away when he was expelled for selling term papers to his fellow students. Now his future doesn’t look quite as perfect as he hoped, and he has a lot of making up to do if he ever wants it to start looking better.
One fateful night they meet when Wren performs the Heimlich maneuver on Grayson, saving his life. She is the girl that never steps out of her box and he is the wild boy that doesn’t think twice about his decisions. But together they grow and become something totally amazing.
Wren is just an all around sweet girl that has let life pass her by. She has never really put much effort into anything really and it has finally caught up to her and she is not happy with the results. I found that Wren was really easy to sympathize with. She has always been a good kid, and usually good behavior is rewarded. But in Wren’s case, it has backfired pretty badly. She starts out as average but as the story unfolds she becomes so much more than average and I loved reading her story.
Grayson is a confidant guy and everything has always come really easy for him. Then when everything comes crashing down it makes him take a step back and look at what he had become. What he ended up seeing was disappointing and now he is ready to make a change. When he meets Wren she catches his interest like no one else ever has. She is such a good person, and Grayson’s not sure if he deserves her. He doesn’t have the best track record, but he is willing to do whatever it takes to make things work with Wren. I loved Grayson, he was a complex character that was easy to fall for.
Everything about this book screamed adorable to me, from the cute cover to the fun synopsis, and let me tell you it did not disappoint. This book is one of those stories that just make you sigh and giddy because it is so cute. It was also full of humor that helped to lighten the tone, when serious issues were brought up. The pacing of the book was spot on and I pretty much flew through the whole thing in one sitting. I really enjoyed Constantine’s writing and I am looking forward to reading whatever she comes out with next. There were a few times I thought there was unneeded drama, and the plot was a little too predictable, but overall this was a very entertaining read. I would highly recommend this to anyone that is looking for a fun contemporary romance.
For his next trick, he threw two weenies in the air at once and successfully caught them in his mouth, to the delight of his rapt audience. This time, when he brought down his chin, he wasn’t grinning. The rest of the hot dogs fell from his hand, and he gestured frantically toward his neck.
No one in the group thought he was choking for real. The brown-suit man pounded his fist against a nearby table and chanted, “Gray. Gray. Gray.” Gray’s face blossomed into a bright shade of red, and drool spilled out of the corner of his mouth. My first thought was that if he would go to those lengths for a joke, he must be a real asshole. I was about to leave when I saw the animal-like panic in his eyes.
I dropped my tray and wrapped my arms around him from behind. The words fist, thumb in, right above the navel came out from the recesses of my brain, and I squeezed upward several times to no avail. Someone yelled for help. There was desperate movement around me, but I continued pushing my fist into Gray’s abdomen until I felt his body release. Just as the band finished playing ”The Girl from Ipanema,” a gooey mass tumbled out of his mouth and landed with a splat on the cocktail table in front of him. Someone groaned, gray gripped the table, head down, and coughed. Sound. A good sign. My arms fell from around his waist, and I stepped back.
FTC Advisory: Balzer + Bray/HarperTeen provided me with a copy of The Promise of Amazing. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.
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