Love & Luck by Jenna Evans Welch
Simon Pulse, 2018, 299 pages
Content Warnings: Discussion of photo of partial nudity being shared without consent, moderately strong language
About the Author: “Jenna Evans Welch was the kind of insatiable child reader who had no choice but to grow up to become a writer. Her first novel, Love & Gelato, was a New York Times bestseller, a 2017 YALSA’s Teens’ Top Ten title, a 2016 Goodreads Choice Award nominee for Best Young Adult Fiction, and a selection for the 2017 Texas Lone Star Reading List. It is currently being published in more than eighteen countries. When she isn’t writing girl-abroad stories, Jenna can be found chasing her babies or making elaborate messes in the kitchen. She lives in Salt Lake City, Utah, with her husband and two children.” (Bio taken from the end of Love & Luck.)
Hashtags: #loveandluck #loveandgelato #loveandolives #loveandotherdetours #jennaevanswelch
Addie should be happy. She’s in Ireland for her aunt’s destination wedding, but she’s heartbroken from a relationship ending badly and frustrated with her brother Ian’s constant pestering about it. After a fistfight between the once-inseparable siblings during the wedding, Addie thinks her summer can’t get any worse…that is, until their travel plans change. Suddenly, Addie, Ian, and Ian’s Irish friend Rowan find themselves on a whirlwind trip through Ireland, desperate to keep their parents from finding out. With the help of an unusual guidebook Addie finds and a growing bond with Rowan, Addie’s vacation might just turn out to be what she needs to heal her shaky relationship with her brother and her broken heart.
In a time where traveling to other countries has been put on hold, this book was exactly what I needed to cure my wanderlust. It’s a great mix between fun adventures and moments of growth. Addie is an extremely relatable character with both flaws and strengths that readers will be able to recognize in themselves. The sibling bond between Addie and Ian was one of my favorite elements of the book. As an only child, I’ve always wanted a sibling who knows me inside and out, and even though the relationship between these two characters is tenuous at times, their love for each other still shines through. And speaking of love, Addie’s growing connection with Rowan was enjoyable to read. Everyone in the story is extremely well-developed, and Addie’s talent for fixing cars is a wonderful addition to her character. With surprising twists and amazing messages, this book is perfect for those who enjoy the magic of traveling, family bonds, and falling in love.
PRR Writer, Wendy Waltrip