By: Katy Upperman
Published Year: 2019
Publisher: Swoon Reads
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. This in no way shape or form influenced my opinion of this book.
Summary (Provided by Goodreads): Since her sister’s tragic death, seventeen-year-old Callie Ryan has basically given up. Her grades have plummeted, she’s quit her swim team, and she barely recognizes the people her parents have become.
When she returns to her aunt’s run-down coastal Victorian one year after Chloe’s death, Callie resigns herself to a summer of guilt and home renovations. She doesn’t expect to be charmed by the tiny coastal town or by Tucker Morgan, a local boy brimming with sunshine.
But even as her days begin to brighten, Callie’s nights are crowded with chilling dreams, unanswered questions, and eerie phenomenon that have her convinced she’s being haunted. Will Callie be able to figure out what her sister is trying to communicate before it’s too late?
Oooooo! Summery! This would be a perfect book to read at the cabin! Pretty much exactly what went through my mind when I saw the cover. I was excited to get the opportunity to participate in the book tour hosted by The Fantastic Flying Book Club. If you are interested in checking out other stops on the tour, you can see the entire tour schedule here.
What I thought
Not what I expected, but ended up really enjoying it!
Callie is sentenced to spend the summer helping renovate her Aunt’s new Bed & Breakfast after a year of getting high and failing school. Last summer, she and her younger sister were at her Aunt’s together, until her sister died. While there, Callie unexpectedly connects with a boy named Tucker, and with her sister Chloe’s ghost.
I think I must’ve tuned out of the synopsis before getting to the paranormal portion. I was a bit surprised when I started reading that there was a ghost storyline and that it was a pretty significant portion of the book. At first, it irritated me because I had been expecting a sweet contemporary YA romance, but then it grew on me. I started to like the mystery aspect of not knowing the full story behind how Callie’s sister Chloe died and learning about it through their interactions.
Tucker, of course, was great. He had his own issues he was dealing with, but I loved that they didn’t stop him from connecting with Callie and from being there for her. I was a bit surprised by how quickly he seems to open up to her emotionally, but it was nice to see. I think I’m used to seeing young male characters be a bit stand-offish in their expression of their feelings and it was nice to see that he didn’t bullshit or play games.
I also liked the slow growth that Callie had. It was a nice balance seeing her fight with her guilt and her grief and seeing her start to get back to her old self. I also liked seeing the contrast between her interactions with her Aunt Lucy versus her interactions with Tucker.
Another aspect I appreciated was that every character in this story had flaws, both the adults and the teenagers. One of the things that I think a lot of adults forget is that young readers need to have adult characters that have flaws and can work on them. I think as a teen I would have appreciated seeing that her parents had issues too and that they started to work on them, not just that they wanted Callie to work on her issues.
Also, the blog tour that I’m a part of has been generous enough to offer a Giveaway for a copy of How the Light Gets in! If you’re interested, you can enter by clicking here.