Under the LightsSeries: The Field Party #2
by Abbi Glines
Published by Simon & Schuster, Simon Pulse on August 23rd 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult
I received this book for free from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Willa can’t erase the bad decisions of her past that led her down the path she’s on now. But she can fight for forgiveness from her family. And she can protect herself by refusing to let anyone else get close to her.
High school quarterback and town golden boy Brady used to be the best of friends with Willa—she even had a crush on him when they were kids. But that’s all changed now: her life choices have made her a different person from the girl he used to know.
Gunner used to be friends with Willa and Brady, too. He too is larger than life and a high school football star—not to mention that his family basically owns the town of Lawton. He loves his life, and doesn’t care about anyone except himself. But Willa is the exception—and he understands the girl she’s become in a way no one else can.
As secrets come to light and hearts are broken, these former childhood friends must face the truth about growing up and falling in love…even if it means losing each other forever.
I’m just going to get this out of the way first:
This story has a love triangle that isn’t a love triangle.
There is an obvious couple who is meant to have their happily ever after.
Phew, now that that’s out of way, I can say that I’m really liking this series from Abbi Glines. It is not your typical touchy feely, goo-goo eyes young adult romance. Both this book and it’s predecessor, Until Friday Night, have substance to them, a real plot behind the romance. Although at times, Under the Lights reminded me of a teen version of the 80’s soap-drama “Dynasty”. It was still a satisfying read for me. Here’s why…
Ms. Glines writes great characters with immense depth. First we have Willa. She hasn’t had an easy childhood (thanks, Mom) but on top of that, she’s made a few mistakes that have landed her in the wrong place at the worst possible time. She’s takes her punishment and then runs to hide with virtually the only person who loves or listens to her, her grandmother (aka Nonna).
When Willa moves in with Nonna, she is reunited with the boys she used to play with when she stayed at her Nonna’s house before. Gunner is the son of the family where Nonna has been the housecleaner and cook for years. Brady is his best friend. They are two very different personalities who come from two very different families. Gunner’s family is rich and full of nasty drama. Brady has an awesome family, as we saw in the first book 😉
It’s funny, I went into this story thinking it was about one character at the center of it all and it turned out to be something completely different. I really liked that little twist. I’m sensing a theme here…
And believe me when I say, I would have been happy had Willa not ended up with either guy. The story turned into being about finding healing and understanding more than the romance.
But there was a romance. There was always a clear choice for Willa (in my head) because “he” was definitely more mature. The other guy has a long way to go in life and learning what’s important.
The story is classic Abbi Glines, its well written and well paced. There’s beaucoup drama. And if you’re fine with that, and perhaps enjoy escaping for a day, I would check this one out. In my opinion, you don’t need to read the first book to enjoy this one. But you’d be missing out… I’m just saying…
Teens over the age of 14 and adults that enjoy young adult drama.