If you're stopping by from the Hop, say hello so I can be sure to find your blog! This week's question comes from Elizabeth who blogs at Silver's Reviews.
When you write reviews, do you write them as you are reading or wait until you have read the entire book?
I nearly always write them after I've read the entire book. Sometimes even a few days later, but I like to do the review within 24 hours, even if I can't publish it for a while. On occasion, for the sort of book that gets a midnight release party, I'll take notes as I read (though I usually just immerse and worry about analyzing later); on occasion, I'll take notes if I'm not enjoying what I'm reading because that sometimes helps me figure out if there's a pattern, a hidden reason for my lack of enjoyment.
Earlier this month, I wondered if YA romance was really romance, because romances in YA are usually accompanied with a self-growth story that's as important as, if not more important than, the romance. I'm not trying to say that characters in adult-marketed romances don't experience character growth, just that character growth is so very vital in YA stories that I usually see that as the focus, with romance secondary, or because I don't usually see the self-growth serving the romance in such a focused way as an obstacle, as an adult romance might use it.
Between then and now, I read I Now Pronounce You Someone Else by Erin McCahan (Scholastic - Arthur A. Levine), and it's probably one of the closest-to-romance-as-in-adult-marketed-romances I've read. Bronwen Oliver wishes she'd find out that she's Phoebe Lilywhite, switched and birth and someday to be reunited with her real family. At least she'll be getting away soon to go to college. But the summer before senior year, she starts dating college senior Jared Sondervan, and they're engaged before she goes back to school. It's perfect: his family is perfect for her, and Jared is--mostly--a loving and lovable boyfriend. Bronwen's senior year goes by in a blur, and she is focused like a laser on her love and her wedding plans, even to the detriment of her friendships.
This plan, to live in wedded bliss near Grand Rapids, Michigan, works for her. (I understand that this captures the people and area pretty well.) When Jared changes the game, will Bronwen play by the new rules, or will she have to leave true love behind to follow her dreams? Yes, there is a part of this story that focuses less on romance and lots on Bronwen finding out who she is as a person who exists as part of and separate from her family, but it's bookended with romance. And I'm not going to spoil the ending! I thought this worked as a romance, definitely.
Have you read it? What did you think?