January 19, 2012

The Big Crunch - Pete Hautman

Young Adult
Pages: 288
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Release Date: January 1, 2011

June and Wes do not "meet cute." They do not fall in love at first sight. They do not swoon with scorching desire. They do not believe that they are instant soul mates destined to be together forever.
This is not that kind of love story.
Instead, they just hang around in each other's orbits...until eventually they collide. And even after that happens, they're still not sure where it will go. Especially when June starts to pity-date one of Wes's friends, and Wes makes some choices that he immediately regrets.
From National Book Award winner Pete Hautman, this is a love story for people not particularly biased toward romance. But it is romantic, in the same way that truth can be romantic and uncertainty can be the biggest certainty of all.

I love realistic and romantic fiction. This would have been a wonderful story for me to read. In fact, I even liked the story. But, imagine for a moment a fresh teen romance story that you were so eager to read... Now imagine that story being told by a ROBOT.

I could not tolerate the third person distant weird storytelling. It drove me nuts. I felt like my 5 years old daughter was methodically telling me what happened in a movie. It was just so emotionless, dull and utterly frustrating narration that it ruined the book for me.

Such flat narration even flattened out the characters that were actually a tad more thought-out characters than I would have expected from this writing. Had it been told in first person alternating povs, I would've probably devoured it, but sadly, it's not. I feel like realistic teen fiction should stick to first person narration, and that might be just me but I'm willing to bet a lot of readers agree.


  1. I love realistic and romantic fiction too...too bad the narration didn't work so well.

  2. I expected this book to "wow" me too, but I am in the same boat as you. I wish the characters had a little more spark to liven them up; it was hard to become invested in their romance otherwise.

    Thank you for the honest review. I think most YA is in first person, and it generally works better that way - especially if the voice is full of personality. (I am also having a hard time with coming up with more 3rd person books that I enjoyed)


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