Sunday, August 3, 2014

Review: Puddle Jumping by Amber L. Johnson

Puddle Jumping
Publisher: Self-pub
Release Date: July 1st 2014
Purchase: Amazon 
When it comes to love there’s no such thing as conventional.

Everyone thinks Colton Neely is special.

Lilly Evans just thinks he’s fascinating.

Once friends when they were younger, their bond is cut short due to her accident prone nature and they go their separate ways. Years later, they meet again and Lilly learns that there is something special about the boy she once knew, but she has no idea what it all means. And she’s not sure if she’s ready to find out.

When he walks through the corridor of her school the first day of her senior year, she knows that it’s time to get to know the real Colton Neely. The more she learns, the deeper she falls.

Their friendship grows into love, even as Colton does not express it in words. But one decision threatens to break down the world that Lilly has tried so hard to integrate into and she must figure out if the relationship can survive if they are apart.

Can I be won over in only a little over a hundred pages? The answer is yes, yes I can, and I just have been. This novella has something I was unaware I needed, and it pleases me to no end to have discovered this little gem among self-published books. Why? Because Puddle Jumping set my heart on fire the moment I read the prologue and it consumed me until the very last page. The rush and the giddy excitement, however, lasted beyond that. Yes, it's mostly a love story. It's also unarguably the best $0.99 I've ever spent.
"I don’t believe there’s such a thing as conventional love. Love is bending. Love is breaking. Love is constantly learning about the other person until you go crazy because it will never be perfect, but there’s no fault in trying."
This is an account of how two people who can't be more opposite found each other and fell in love. It completely centers around them; from their fleeting relationship in childhood to the time their paths crossed again as teenagers. The entirety of the story and the secondary characters are purely built around the lives of our main characters, Lilly and Colton.
There have been a lot of words to describe me over the years: precocious, hard-headed . . . indestructible.
Lilly, our narrator, is exactly those words and more. She's also constantly understanding and accepting. And more importantly, she sees Colton for what he is beneath the label he's known by most people; that he's special in every sense of the word. 

Colton is a fascinating character. He's different but he's far from being just all that. He's also a virtuoso in the arts and I admire that he tries so hard to be an even better person, and to be what he believes is worthy of Lilly's love. These two are beautiful apart, but together? they're all fireworks. Their relationship is straightforward, no one plays mind games and not once did it become suffocating.

Because this is a story with only a hundred and twenty-five pages to set itself up, there's also less chance for development in secondary characters and more room for quibbles. Besides Colton's mom, the other characters surrounding them lack growth and are essentially two-dimensional. That said, it's easily overlooked because again - this is only a hundred pages and it all boils down to how much I enjoyed everything about this. 

Amber Johnson created such a romantic, squeal-inducing and moving story that touches on the importance of compassion and having an open mind. She weaved a tale that veers away from any stereotype and depicts the challenges and tribulations of being with someone special.

I can't recommend this enough for people who enjoy a sweet romance and are in need of a lighthearted yet eye-opening and unforgettable read.

4 and a half feathers. An amazing read!

About the Author 
Amber is a full time mom, full time wife, is employed full time, and writes when she can. She believes in Happily Ever Afters that occur every day - despite the obstacles that real life serves up on a regular basis. Or perhaps they're sweeter simply because of them. She always has 2 rubber bands on her wrist, a song in her head, and too much creamer in her coffee cup that reads 'Cocoa' - because she's a rebel. If she's not at her desk, with her boys, or behind the computer, she's supporting live music with her arms raised above her head and eyes closed, waiting for the drop.

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