Author: Jennifer Echols
Publisher: MTV Books
Release date: July 10th 2012
Genre: Contemporary YA; romance
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High school senior Leah Jones loves nothing more than flying. While she’s in the air, it’s easy to forget life with her absentee mother at the low-rent end of a South Carolina beach town. When her flight instructor, Mr. Hall, hires her to fly for his banner advertising business, she sees it as her ticket out of the trailer park. And when he dies suddenly, she’s afraid her flying career is gone forever.My rating: 4 out of 5 stars
But Mr. Hall’s teenage sons, golden boy Alec and adrenaline junkie Grayson, are determined to keep the banner planes flying. Though Leah has crushed on Grayson for years, she’s leery of getting involved in what now seems like a doomed business--until Grayson betrays her by digging up her most damning secret. Holding it over her head, he forces her to fly for secret reasons of his own, reasons involving Alec. Now Leah finds herself drawn into a battle between brothers--and the consequences could be deadly.
Everyone else seems to turn into a fangirling mess every time someone mentions Jennifer Echols, but I have a bit of a love-hate relationship with her books. I loved Going Too Far, but the other Echols books I've read just did not work for me. Still, I've continued to read her books in the hopes that some day, I would love one as much as I loved Going Too Far. And with Such a Rush, it finally happened - it's replaced Going Too Far as my favorite Jennifer Echols book!
I've noticed that the characters in Jennifer Echols's books always have a somewhat unusual interest, and in Such a Rush, it's flying. These unusual interests don't always work for me, but in this case, it totally did. The concept of a girl pilot is just so awesomely kickass. To say I don't know much about flying and piloting would be an understatement, so I was a little worried I wouldn't get that part. But Jennifer Echols made it so relatable! I totally understood flying and what it meant to Leah. I love how that whole idea contributed to the novel!
Even asides from the flying thing, Leah is an all-around kickass character. She's not the usual MC you read about. I don't even know how to describe her; she doesn't fit any of the YA character stereotypes. I'll just say that I loved her, even though we're really different. I liked reading about her family situation, too - such a unique set-up for contemporary YA! I really enjoyed seeing Leah try to get out of that situation and take care of herself.
And then there's the romance. Oh, the romance. It is SO GOOD. There's really nothing else to say; the romance in Such a Rush just made me ridiculously happy. The description makes it sound like your typical good-boy/bad-boy love triangle, but that's not the case at all, for one because I'm not sure I'd even call this a love triangle. Grayson blackmails Leah into dating Alec but won't tell her why. Usually, storylines like that are disappointing for me; the secret often turns out to be some tiny thing, making the whole story unrealistic and melodramatic. But that's not the case in Such a Rush - Grayson's reasons really do make sense! And the romance is so good! Jennifer Echols is the master of sexual tension and realistic, mature relationships, and Leah and Grayson are no exception. I loved these two together.
My only complaint is the ending. I know it's the kind of ending lots of people love, but I just... don't. I just found it a little too sweet to be realistic.
But, really, I didn't even care; Such a Rush wasn't about the little things for me. It was just about the feeling of loving to read! I haven't been reading that much lately, but Such a Rush made it so easy to get lost in the story; it made me want to scream and shout my love for bookish things. Such a Rush is my new favorite Jennifer Echols book, and one of the best books I've read in a while!