Title: My Best Everything
Author: Sarah Tomp
Publication Date: March 3, 2015
Pages: 400 pages
Luisa “Lulu” Mendez has just finished her final year of high school in a small Virginia town, determined to move on and leave her job at the local junkyard behind. So when her father loses her college tuition money, Lulu needs a new ticket out.
Desperate for funds, she cooks up the (definitely illegal) plan to make and sell moonshine with her friends, Roni and Bucky. Quickly realizing they’re out of their depth, Lulu turns to Mason: a local boy who’s always seemed like a dead end. As Mason guides Lulu through the secret world of moonshine, it looks like her plan might actually work. But can she leave town before she loses everything – including her heart?
The summer walks the line between toxic and intoxicating. My Best Everything is Lulu’s letter to Mason – though is it an apology, a good-bye, or a love letter?
My Best Everything was not the story I was expecting or hoping for. It was an okay read, but just barely. It made me struggle to keep reading and at times I seriously considered of putting it down and marking it as DNF, something I rarely do with books.
The thing about this book was that I couldn’t relate to the story or the characters. I didn’t feel either of these two key elements, even when I tried hard to have an open mind. In a way, I understood the characters’ situations, like Lulu’s need to get out of town and move to California, but I don’t think the things she does to achieve her dreams were the right way to go. Call it desperation, but for someone who holds the flag of being a smart person, well, guess she wasn’t really one.
I’m not trying to say that the characters weren’t interesting. In fact, I really liked Lulu’s best friend Roni and her boyfriend, Bucky. They were nice supporting characters, even Mason who is Lulu’s love interest. But I would have loved to have gotten at least some character growth from them. Lulu was a lost cause right from the start, I just had that hunch from when I met her. She starts and ends off the same. It was a bit disappointing.
What I did enjoy about this book was the way it was written, though at first I wasn’t much of a fan of it. My Best Everything reads like a letter from Lulu to Mason, always referring to him as “You”. She tells the story of how she first met him, how the things at her house were going and how much his help with the Moonshine meant to her. It was an interesting way to tell the story since it has an air of mystery and keeps the reader guessing and assuming about what goes wrong and why Lulu keeps speaking to Mason through a letter. So I have to give it to the author, My Best Everything‘s writing style was pretty great.
To wrap this all up, I have to say that I am a bit bummed that My Best Everything didn’t turn out to be my kind of read. I really wanted to like it, but I guess this book and I just weren’t meant to be.
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