Release Date: March 4, 2014
Publisher: Entangled Teen
Review Source: Netgalley
Synopsis: (from Goodreads)
Before, Brynn had a group of best friends, a loving boyfriend, a growing talent for pottery. She had a life. And after…she had none.
When Brynn lost the boyfriend who never loved her, the friends who feel she betrayed their trust, and the new life just beginning to grow inside her, she believes her future is as empty as her body. But then Christian, the boy next door, starts coming around. Playing his guitar and pushing her to create art once more. She meets some new friends at the local community center, plus even gets her dad to look her in the eye again…sort of.
But can Brynn open up her heart to truly find her life’s own beauty, when living for the after means letting go of the before?
I always enjoy Nyrae Dawn’s writing. She has an emotional honesty to her writing, and she consistently creates characters who feel real. I loved all the characters in Searching for Beautiful: Christian and his mom, Brynn's dad, the memory of Brynn’s mom, Emory, and, of course, Brynn herself. Brynn is a girl who has had a very bad experience. She feels alone as she deals with the aftermath, and she’s a girl who is still dealing with the death of her mom at a moment when she most needs her mom.
I absolutely adored the slow change that occurs in Brynn. She’s not automatically different or better because of Christian's influence. It’s a slow burn friendship that occurs between them where I personally would have been okay with them staying friends or becoming something more. Either way I loved how Christian was there for her. He’s such a good listener, but also someone who pushes and challenges Brynn to be happy again. Most of all, he doesn't judge her like everyone else seems to.
Searching for Beautiful is a truly lovely book filled with amazing characters and a great message. While Christian is the catalyst for Brynn’s change, the important message in this book is seeing the beauty in yourself. The big change is Brynn finding value in herself again, accepting who she is and learning from her past. I highly recommend this title to all YA contemporary fans.
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