Sunday, December 14, 2014

Review: The Charlotte Chronicles by Jen Frederick


Charlotte and Nathan were supposed to be forever. They grew up together. Their families were intertwined. Charlotte was Nathan's first love. Nathan was Charlotte's first everything. 

Until they weren't. 

How do you hold on to the person you know in your heart you are supposed to be with when everything and everyone in the universe is telling you it's over? 

How many times does a heart break? 

When is enough…..enough? 

How long is forever?

My Review

If you were able to read this book in one sitting or even across a couple days, you are lucky!  I got this book one Friday newsletter at a time starting waaaaay back in October 2013. I would wake up on Friday morning and the first thing I would do was open my email to read that week's installment. Every week I would get a little more of the story and it would leave me wanting more. Talk about a slow burn.  

Having read the Woodlands series (and LOVING it) I already had a connection to both Charlotte and Nate. Nate is the son of Grace and Noah, from Undeclared (Book 1) and Charlotte is the daughter of Bo and AnnMarie from, Unspoken (Book 2).  It was nice to get a glimpse into the older versions of these characters that I already knew and loved.

The first part of the book take places while Nathan and Charlotte are in high school. From a very young age Nathan knew that Charlotte was the one for him. It isn't until they are teenagers and she gets sick and that he realizes he needs to do something about it. They become a couple, but it isn't long until they are torn apart and their relationship gets into trouble.  

The second part of the book takes place nine years later. This is the part of the book that drove me CRAZY (but in a good way). I laughed. I cried. I got frustrated when things didn't go the way I wanted them to go. I guess the upside to that was I knew how the book was going to end. The author had given us a quick glimpse into the future in her novella "Undressed," but that didn't matter. This book wasn't about the ending, but about the journey that Charlotte and Nathan had to go on to get to the ending they not only wanted, but deserved.

In this book we get to see grown up Nick, Nate's brother, who is still Charlotte's best friend. He is the one who has been there for Charlotte over the years and these two have an amazing brother/sister relationship. Nick is funny, loyal, sexy and deep down just a big old teddy bear. He is still quite the ladies man, but he has met his match in Charlotte's friend Lainey. These two are going to get their own book and I cannot wait. I think their story is going to be amazing. 

If you are a fan of The Woodlands series, this is a MUST READ. There is an epilogue that made me so warm and fuzzy inside I couldn't even stand it. All I will say is this: NATHAN AS A FATHER. 

In the first book, Undeclared, the author used letter writing as a way for the main characters to meet. In this book, the letter writing comes back in a BIG way. I will just say that towards the end of the book a letter is written that made me a lot. Here is a little sample: 

“You’ve already learned that kindness can be a way of life and that loving someone makes you stronger and not weaker. These are important lessons that it takes others a whole life to learn. 
That other boys don’t understand the way you are choosing to live your life doesn’t make your choices wrong. It only makes them different. 
I wish I’d been more like you. When I woke up and realized your mom was the one for me, I’d already squandered that first time on someone whose face I don’t even remember now. If there’s ever a thing I regretted, and I don’t regret much, it’s that she wasn’t my first. 
A boy gives his body away to anyone. It takes a man to abstain. These suckers who are hassling you are envious of your fortitude, your strength. 
You’re worth a hell of a lot, and I’m glad you realize it. Waiting because you want to find the right one to share that momentous time in your life is not only admirable but an action that shouts leadership.”

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