Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Release Day Review: What Light by Jay Asher

Title: What Light 
Author: Jay Asher 
Publisher: Razorbill 
Source: Publisher 
Published: October 18th, 2016 
Purchase: Amazon  |  B&N 

Summary: Sierra's family runs a Christmas tree farm in Oregon—it's a bucolic setting for a girl to grow up in, except that every year, they pack up and move to California to set up their Christmas tree lot for the season. So Sierra lives two lives: her life in Oregon and her life at Christmas. And leaving one always means missing the other. 

Until this particular Christmas, when Sierra meets Caleb, and one life eclipses the other.

By reputation, Caleb is not your perfect guy: years ago, he made an enormous mistake and has been paying for it ever since. But Sierra sees beyond Caleb's past and becomes determined to help him find forgiveness and, maybe, redemption. As disapproval, misconceptions, and suspicions swirl around them, Caleb and Sierra discover the one thing that transcends all else: true love.

What Light is a love story that's moving and life-affirming and completely unforgettable.


Jay Asher captured my heart with Thirteen Reasons Why, so I was beyond thrilled to read What Light; and even though I knew from the summary that it would be a different kind of read, I was curious to see how it measured up to the novel I adored so much. Unfortunately... it didn't. It actually breaks my heart that I wasn't able to love this book. Asher's writing is still wonderful; but hard as I tried, I simply could not connect with the characters or the storyline.

This seemed like such a great concept for a story; Sierra gets to leave home every Christmas to sell trees and has a completely separate life in another state, but it's a tradition that might soon be cut short. While I love the image that paints, I was hoping for a little less fluff and a bit more depth. There was some predictability, but I was more concerned with the unbelievability, especially with the MC's parents. Speaking of the main character, Sierra annoyed me a bit, but it was her friends back home that truly frustrated me. I actually would probably prefer hanging out with the seemingly shady love interest instead of Sierra's overly dramatic teenage friends. (I know what you're thinking, but no, we're not ALL overly dramatic. Mostly.) I did, however, enjoy some of the secondary characters, namely Heather and Devon.

Even with the love interest's dark past and the fear that this could be Sierra's last year doing what she loves, this book was still a little too light for me. I recommend this for younger teens who enjoy lighter reads and are fans of contemporary romance.

Thank you to the publisher for sending me this book in exchange for my honest review. 

© at A Belle's Tales



  1. Wow. I am glad I didn't get a copy, I was kind of bummed, but after reading your review, I know this won't work for me. I have struggled big time with YA lately and to hear that this one has some annoying characters and it stretches believablity, I think it is a pass for me. So sorry you didn't love it more, McKenzie, but I appreciate the honest review.

  2. OHHHH NOESSSS.... its the worst when a book disappoints especially when you loved the authors previous work. I'm not one for lighter YA contemporary reads (give me darker tones please) so I don't think this is one for me. Still a great review!

  3. Sorry you didn't enjoy this one more. I do love the cover. :) Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

  4. Aw, I'm sorry you didn't enjoy it. This one I'll be passing over.


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