[Blog Tour] The Art of Lainey by Paula StokesWednesday, May 21, 2014
Title: The Art of Lainey
Author: Paula Stokes
Genre: YA Contemporary
Format: Paperback, 384 pages
Release Date: May 20th 2014
Source: ARC received from publisher for Blog Tour in exchange for an honest review
Amazon | Indigo | TBD | Goodreads
Soccer star Lainey Mitchell is gearing up to spend an epic summer with her amazing boyfriend, Jason, when he suddenly breaks up with her—no reasons, no warning, and in public no less! Lainey is more than crushed, but with help from her friend Bianca, she resolves to do whatever it takes to get Jason back.
And that’s when the girls stumble across a copy of The Art of War. With just one glance, they're sure they can use the book to lure Jason back into Lainey’s arms. So Lainey channels her inner warlord, recruiting spies to gather intel and persuading her coworker Micah to pose as her new boyfriend to make Jason jealous. After a few "dates", it looks like her plan is going to work! But now her relationship with Micah is starting to feel like more than just a game.
What's a girl to do when what she wants is totally different from what she needs? How do you figure out the person you're meant to be with if you're still figuring out the person you're meant to be?
Lately I have been on such a contemporary kick that they all seem to blend together. I have found myself reading so many of these books that seem to break me at every turn, their characters are damaged and in need of "fixing" in some sorts so when I started reading The Art of Lainey I was so relieved that this book would put a smile on my face from page one.
What I think made me love this book more than others was the subject matter and how it came to be. Basing a story on another piece of literature is something that I adore. Being someone who reads a lot I find it not only interesting but enlightening as well. The Art of Lainey deals with the main character reading The Art of War and applying it to her failing relationship. I loved this aspect of the story because not only did it cause a lot of great situations for all of the characters, but it also allowed me to become familiar with The Art of War, a book that I have not read, but now feel like I have.
Characters in contemporary YA fiction are extremely important because they are at the center of the story. It is different with other genres because the world building takes up a lot of the spotlight, but in contemporary there is none of that, just the characters are their connections to the reader. The Art of Lainey has a great narrator, a girl that grows with the reader. I will admit that I did not like Lainey as much in the beginning because I felt that she focused on the wrong things in her life, like who her boyfriends was and how her life would change without him, and who she would be without him and how horrible that person would be. But as the story went on, and the more people she hung out with, like Micah (swoon!) she began to see who she really was outside of the bubble she created. And that person was not as bad as she thought.
The secondary characters were just as amazing in this book. Micah was my favorite because he was just so sweet, but not too perfect because if he was you would think it was too good to be true. He made mistakes along with Lainey and their journey together was a great read. Micah was juxtaposed to Jason, Lainey's ex, and I thought that these two guys were so different from each other, but honestly they think the exact same at times. That was the interesting part for me was to see two guys, who like the same girl, try and win her. And honestly there is a clear winner and if you read the book you will know right away who wins :)
The Art of Lainey is a lighthearted fun read that you will finish in a day (honestly!). This book combines the heartache of a first love with the discovery of oneself. Lainey not only discovers who she is but discovers that being alone is something that is okay and not something to be ashamed of. I loved that this book was lighthearted but also dealt with a lot of issues that many teenagers and some adults deal with as well. This is a book for all contemporary lovers because you will fall for Lainey and the cast of characters she surrounds herself with.