Review #5: Fiction
A Little Something Different by Sandy Hall
Disclaimer: I received this as an advanced reader’s copy at a panel while attending Book Expo American in New York in May.
Right off the bat, I love the concept of how this book came to be. Swoon Reads is the first of its kind, providing an internet forum for writers to post, share, and comment on others’ work. Essentially the staff at Swoon Reads monitors this site (where authors are uploading the manuscript of their books and readers are reading, commenting on, and rating the work) searching for the best stuff. Based on their own interest and the feedback from the crowd, Swoon Reads selects titles they want to work with and publish through the traditional publishing house platform. A Little Something Different is the first book to be selected and will be published and available in print (as well as ebook formats) this coming August.
I thought it was extremely cute and that it had a really unique and fresh concept with the multiple points of view, none of which were the view of either of the main characters (and some were even inanimate objects or animals). It really was something a little different and endearing in its simplicity start to finish.
However, it definitely read like it was crowd-sourced; it felt a bit underdeveloped, and that might change before it’s fully published, but maybe not. I felt the characters at times were a bit juvenile for the age group they were supposed to be representing. It felt like it should have been a high school story rather than a college one, and it was a bit choppy. I did like the points of view, but some (like the squirrel, the bench, and the Chinese delivery guy) should either have been utilized more or removed–those sections seemed a bit like they existed purely for the sake of having more perspectives rather than truly adding to or enhancing the story. The ending felt very “10 Things I Hate About You” which worked for me. It was a grand, public, and poetic declaration of love, and I am always one to enjoy gestures like that.
Overall it’s a quick, cute read and I think a really good debut for Swoon Reads.
My rating: 3.5 stars out of 5.
*cover art from Amazon.com