Title: Under a Million Stars
Author: Rita Branches
Format: Ebook (Review Copy)
Series: Stand alone
Genre: Young Adult | Romance | Contemporary
Can a beating heart bleed from the shattered pieces?
Her heart cracked when her best friend walked away; it completely shattered when she lost her family in a tragic accident.
Now orphaned at seventeen, Charlotte Peterson is forced to live with her former best friend, Jacob Parker. Charlie, a talented pianist, desperately wants their loving friendship back, but something is holding Jake back. The more she spirals into the darkness of depression, the more she needs him.
Jacob vowed to stay away from her—no matter how much he still loved her. Armed with secrets that would have destroyed both of their families, he chose to end their friendship and walk away, which nearly killed him. As he watches the girl he once knew begin to fade away, however, he realizes that their relationship is more important than the truth he’s hiding.
Now it’s up to Jacob to put the pieces of Charlie’s broken heart back together—even if it means revealing the secrets he so desperately wants to protect her from.
Will Jacob find a way to bring back the carefree, talented girl he once knew, or is it too late for both of them?
I was hooked by the story without even realizing it and I didn’t know why or how!
The story revolves around Charlotte Peterson, a very talented pianist who lost her family in a tragic accident, and how she deals with depression caused by her loss. She is forced to live her former childhood best friend, Jacob, who ended their friendship years ago for no apparent reason. Even given Charlotte’s situation, Jacob still refuses to make up. But why? How big is that reason for him not to be swayed by Charlotte’s loss? Finding out the reason why is what kept me hooked with this novel. And most probably will be the reason why you will, too.
The plot is so good. It jogs your memory about If I Stay but, it’s what happened after the incident, and how the protagonist picks up her broken pieces together, slowly, until she has glued herself back together again. The story reminds us about the importance of family and loved ones. In fact, there were actually part where I actually teared up! The thing between Charlotte and Jacob went along with the plot as well.
And the character development!
The protagonist had a really really really wonderful character development. I loved how the author showed the protagonist’s growth and how she handled the depression caused by her loss. We can actually see Charlotte’s self- healing progress in each chapter. How she lost total interest in socializing and the things she used to love, but as the story developed, so did she.
The only thing bugging me about the two protagonists is Jacob and his mood swings. One minute he shows great compassion and love for Charlotte, the next, he’s ignoring her and complaining about her. But! Eventually, when the reason was finally, shown, I understood why he acted that way.
Rita Branches’ writing style is also really comfortable to read. I could easily visualize the scene she was trying to tell and felt the feels she wanted me to have. I just have a small problem with the repetition of scenes. Like how this certain scene given from Charlotte’s point of view is shown again but now it’s in Jacob’s POV. I perfectly understand the reason for this, but I just don’t like it. Although there may be some other readers who are more comfortable with this type of writing but, it’s just not for me.
All in all, this has been a really wonderful read. The plot was good. I loved the character development most of all. The writing style is really comfortable to read. And to top it all, the book cover is just gorgeous. If you’ve read and loved, If I Stay by Gayle Forman, then I definitely recommend this book to you.
Plot – 25%
Characterization – 20%
Writing style – 18%
Book Cover Relevance – 4%
Feels – 15%
Shareability – 10%
TOTAL – 92%