Popsugar Reading Challenge 2021 Book 22

Prompt: A book with fewer than 1000 Goodreads reviews

I read a lot of ARCs and new books.so this.was.always going to be an easy prompt to fill. I’ve decided to use What Beauty There Is by Cory Anderson which I’ve just read as part of a Tandem Collective readalong. It was absolutely wonderful and deserves to be shared as much as possible.

What it’s about?

Winter. The sky is dark. It is cold enough to crack bones.

Jack Morton has nothing left. Except his younger brother, Matty, who he’d do anything for. Even die for. Now with their mother gone, and their funds quickly dwindling, Jack needs to make a choice: lose his brother to foster care, or find the drug money that sent his father to prison. He chooses the money.

Ava Bardem lives in isolation, a life of silence. For seventeen years her father has controlled her fate. He has taught her to love no one. Trust no one. Now Victor Bardem is stalking the same money as Jack. When he picks up Jack’s trail, Ava must make her own wrenching choice: remain silent or help the brothers survive.

Choices. They come at a price.

What I think:

This book is simply wonderful.

It’s bleak and heartbreaking but filled with moments of joy and driven by love.

Jack is in high school. He keeps himself to himself and focuses on helping his family survive. His mother is struggling with addiction and depression and when Jack come home and find her dead he realises that he is alone in the world, expect for his younger brother Matty.

The house is about to be repossessed, there’s no money and little good, but Jack is determined to keep Matty out if foster care. So he goes in search of Hidden drug money that Sent his father to prison. In doing so he alerts other people. Very bad people.

He is helped by Ava. Quiet and resilient, Ava and Jack have a connection that is deeper than they realise. Ava has been brought up not to trust people and never let anyone into her heart. Despite the fact that her involvement with the Dahl boys could put her own life in dangers this she agrees to help Jack and Matty.

This book is dark and intense and utterly compelling. The language and description in this book is just beautiful. The friendship between Jack and Ava is heartbreakingly honest.

There were places in the story where I was genuinely on edge as the tension was so great. I was desperately willing the characters to succeed.

I can not recommend this book highly enough. It’s one of the best books I have read in a long time ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Thank you to Penguin and Tandem Collective for the gifted copy of the book.

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