Title: How To Love
Author: Katie Cotugno
Genre: Young Adult meets New Adult?
Overall Emotions: In love, amazed, sad.
Rating: 5/5 Stars
Reena Montero has loved Sawyer LeGrande for as long as she can remember: as natural as breathing, as endless as time. But he’s never seemed to notice that Reena even exists until one day, impossibly, he does. Reena and Sawyer fall in messy, complicated love. But then Sawyer disappears from their humid Florida town without a word, leaving a devastated—and pregnant—Reena behind.
Almost three years have passed, and there’s a new love in Reena’s life: her daughter, Hannah. Reena’s gotten used to being without Sawyer, and she’s finally getting the hang of this strange, unexpected life. But just as swiftly and suddenly as he disappeared, Sawyer turns up again. Reena doesn’t want anything to do with him, though she’d be lying if she said Sawyer’s being back wasn’t stirring something in her. After everything that’s happened, can Reena really let herself love Sawyer LeGrande again?
In this breathtaking debut, Katie Cotugno weaves together the story of one couple falling in love—twice.
This book is beautiful, I don’t know why it took me so many years to finally pick it up. I was a huge fan of 99 Days, which I read a year or two ago and I had checked out the synopsis for How to Love but it didn’t interest me at the time. I’m glad I finally read it, I devoured it in three days.
Sereena had a plan to get the hell out of her Florida town and she was going to do it a year early. Nothing was going to stop her, that is, until she found out she was pregnant and the father has left town without even knowing of his unborn child.
I loved how Cotugno interweaved the before and after in alternating chapters and It worked perfectly. We got to see why she had fallen in love with him and why she had this burning hatred for him when he returned out of the blue.
There were so many twists and turns with this book, and I only saw a handful coming. The biggest one being Sawyer’s rock and roll lifestyle. I loved that Reena’s parents were main characters, too often in YA novels, teens do whatever and we only see their parents a scene or two. Seeing her parents, you could tell they still treated her like a silly, naive child.
Even though I loved this book and gave it a perfect score, I did have some issues:
- Occasionaly, Reena calls Hannah ‘the baby’. I have to handle the baby, the baby needs a nap. The baby is 14 months (another pet peeve of mine, your baby is one. Just one). It bothered me, it made Hannah seem unwanted sometimes.
- I felt like toward the end where the two families are together and Reena explodes in rage around everyone, I didn’t think she got the chance to say everything. Sawyer’s parents literally were non-existent like he was in his daughters life. If I were Reena, I would have made sure to let Sawyer know how they treated her. Or possibly, did Reena just push them away? We never learn that.
- Why was she even friends with Allie the shoplifter. Allie had a horrid personality and she wasn’t a great friend to Reena. She talked down to her so much!
- The ending. Yes it was happy, but I wasn’t pleased with it.
I hope Katie Cotugno can put more novels out like this, I’ve loved everything she’s done so far.