Blog Tour: Don't Ever Change by M. Beth Bloom -- REVIEW + PLAYLIST + GIVEAWAY!!!

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Don't Ever Change
by M. Beth Bloom
Publisher: HarperTeen
Release Date: July 7th 2015
Rate: 3/5 stars

Synopsis:

Eva has always wanted to write a modern classic—one that actually appeals to her generation. The only problem is that she has realized she can't "write what she knows" because she hasn't yet begun to live. So before heading off to college, Eva is determined to get a life worth writing about.

Soon Eva's life encounters a few unexpected plot twists. She becomes a counselor at a nearby summer camp—a job she is completely unqualified for. She starts growing apart from her best friends before they've even left for school. And most surprising of all, she begins to fall for the last guy she would have ever imagined. But no matter the roadblocks, or writer's blocks, it is all up to Eva to figure out how she wants this chapter in her story to end.

Perfect for fans of E. Lockhart, David Levithan, and Rainbow Rowell,Don't Ever Change is a witty, snarky, and thought-provoking coming-of-age young adult novel about a teen who sets out to write better fiction and, ultimately, discovers the truth about herself.



Everyone knows I'm such a sucker for contemporary. Writer MC? Summer romance? Highschool to college coming of age story? Yes yes yes! As expected, Don't Ever Change was such a fun, and cute read for me. Aside from it being very enjoyable, I also found the narrative very honest and real, this being the main selling point of this book. I always favor character-driven books as opposed to those that have so many things going on but have zero character development. I'm glad to say that Don't Ever Change is able to succeed with the former.

It really appealed to me how Eva is made to be so unlike-able as a character, with her up-tightness and high sense of pride,  that I actually ended up liking her. I loved how ambitious and driven she is with her writing, that she's trying hard to find her voice by creating new experiences and trying new things - and doing a lot of wrong things along the way. But hey, that's all part of the self-discovery, right? I loved how willing she is to change and learn new things, and her renewed sense of self-awareness is admirable. She may appear to be snobby and socially inept at times, but the way she improves her interaction with her peers, namely her campers, reflect her character growth as the story progresses.



In the story, Eva has two boys. There's Elliot, a random guy who Eva meets in a party. He smokes, he's in a band, and someone who's just totally different and unknown, yet Eva gets into a relationship (if you could call it that) with him. Then there's Foster, a guy who Eva has known for a while, who can be considered as somewhat of her rival in writing. He's sweet, responsible, and caring, especially with his campers. Throughout the summer, Eva and Foster become closer to each other, and a relationship starts to form. I liked the contrast between the two guys, and I think this served as a way for the main character to delve into deeper water and experiment on her experiences, something that actually proves to be a good way for her to mature.

The romance aspect of this book isn't exactly highlighted that much, which surprisingly bothered me. Normally I complain about how there's so much romance, and so few story, but with this one, I'm at a standstill. Foster is so cute, and I think I liked him too much, that I might be a bit biased in wishing for more romance - because that would mean more Foster. Hehe. The romance does tie up neatly in the end, although I really wished there would've been more cutesy moments between the two.

Another thing I liked about this book is how well written it is, which should be, since Eva is a writer. I liked how this reads more like a journal of some sort, how Eva is figuring out her own character in her own story, and that is a pretty good concept. I did find the pacing a bit slow, however, again pointing out that there isn't much that happened, so I wished it could've been better paced. I also couldn't care less about the other characters (aside from Foster of course!) which is a bit problematic. I think the book only focuses on the main character, and all the other people don't feel like real people, which is such a shame, because normally after reading a really good book, I always want to read about another character's story - but with this one, I don't even remember any of their names.

All things said, Don't Ever Change is a generally good coming-of-age story about self-discovery of a girl who thinks she's already got everything planned out in her life, but then realizes that sometimes change is not at all that bad. There are some definite drawbacks, but this is still a pretty solid book and I would recommend it to fans of contemporary and YA.

Unwritten - Natasha Bedingfield
Who Says- Selena Gomez
Breakaway - Kelly Clarkson
Brave - Sara Bareilles
Happily - One Direction
Ho Hey - The Lumineers

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M. Beth Bloom is a novelist and a screenwriter. Her fiction has appeared in StoryQuarterly and Dave Eggers's Best American Nonrequired Reading series. She is also the author of Drain You. M. Beth lives in Los Angeles.


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