Friday, 13 April 2012

The Things We Did for Love - Natasha Farrant review!

This is my twentieth review for the BBC! :)

This is a book that I won from a wonderful online community called The Spark! Launched by Faber and Faber publishers, you will adore this community if you love creativity or reading! It really is a lovely page, really refreshing and extremely professional. I am wholly honest when I say I am a huge fan! :) So thankyou to all at Faber and Faber, The Spark and Natasha for letting me read this eye-opening book, I am really grateful. Thankyou! Here is my review.

This is what the front cover of the book looks like:

I know, it's beautiful, isn't it? The colours are dark with lots of depth, though the dark blue used is really enticing and the bright hopeful ray of yellow that the title is really balances it all out, this really is a book cover that sticks in your mind, and for all the right reasons!
The black roses are also a fantastic touch to this cover, they are flowers of love so show love and compassion of war, and perhaps ourselves, and the colour black and the thorns on them also show the dark side of war and also the dark sides of ourselves, I also think that the way the black roses wrap around the bright yellow title was really clever. Like the light and dark side of the world, or then again, anything?
So yes I really love the cover for the book, not only is it extremely attractive and is really nice to look at. It's also very professional and absolutely beautiful at the same time, and I think it's really good at subtly explaining slight parts of the story (the things I've mentioned above: light and dark side of the war etc.) I even think that it's one of my favourite book covers I have seen in months! Yes, really!

The book itself is set in France 1944 - near the end of World War 2, and the Allies have landed. But that is not the only mammoth occasion that is happening - in the small village of Samaroux, Luc is returning. Arianne knew him of course, how could she forget him? As a child Luc had helped her through her mothers death  - but will Luc remember that, now a young man?
Then suddenly they fall into a deep first love - though of course things don't run smoothly. Romy - a young boy who has had a crush on Arianne since he was a child, knows of a way he may be able to get rid of his rival - whatever the cost.
And with the Germans closing in - Luc will do anything to be a hero. Will Arianne be able to make him stay? And how far will someone go to impress the woman they love? What is the price people will go to, with the things they do for love?
The Things we Did for Love is a thought-provoking tale of first love, life war, and loss. Based on a true event, this is a YA debut by a fantastic author that you will not want to miss.

Now I really liked this book. It just flowed really well, so much so that I really couldn't put it down until I finished it! Really, it only took me a few hours to complete it, which is brilliant! (I love that in a book). I think the real reason that it flowed so well was mostly because of Farrant's wonderful writing talent. It was amazing, everything was so raw and heartfelt and real - so much so that you can tell it was written from the heart, which is superb. It was as if, when reading, you just step back through time with every turn of a page - everything was just described so well and there was so much hidden mystery and depth within every chapter, is was so refreshing to read and really quite breath-taking.
I cannot believe that this is Farrant's first YA novel! She just hit the nail on the head with it, the plot was exciting and the romance very believable but not so gushy or overplayed that it would not appeal to only one sex. It ticks all the boxes, I really do hope that this isn't her only YA novel. And if she does write another YA novel, I will definitely be in line to buy it.

Another thing that really made me adore this book and really respect Farrant as a writer was the historical depth and accuracy that is in this novel. It is a rare occasion were you get a phenomenally written World War young adult novel with fantastic characters and plot that also gives you a passion to learn about World War history! The story behind the devastating ending of the novel made such a impression on me that I will definitely try my hardest to visit the village now turned museum that inspired Samaroux one day. So five stars for Farrant for this, after all, it is a rare talent to get teenagers so interested in War history! And I hope that it has inspired others to learn about World War history too.

My favourite character from this book would have to be Solange. Not only is she very strong-willed and a very fiesty person, which is always very interesting in a well-written character, as all in this novel are (I really wish I had descovered Farrant earlier!), she also has a lovely softer side, and the parts were she comforts her cousin Arianne, in a almost motherly and extremely caring way is absolutely beautiful and really pulled at my heartstrings. You also learn a awful lot more about her at the very beginning and end of the novel (not spoiling anything) so that was a really clever touch from Farrant, in my opinion, and made me adore the character even more, and I really wish she had had a better ending. Ah well.

So if you are looking for a young adult historical romance novel that will require a tissue or two at the ready but will definitely be worth the read, then this is the book for you! I have already recommended it to all my friends. Farrant really shows her talent, skill and passion with this novel, and I really hope she does well because reading this has shown me that she really does deserve it. And I really hope that she continues to write YA. I would give this book an age rating of 13+ or mature readers and a personal rating of 9/10.

Thanks for reading!
W-O-W xoxoxo
Sorry if there are any grammar mistakes, bad spelling ect. Please let me know in a comment so I can fix it! and comments & follows are hugs<3 This is all my opinion. Please no negative comments because of my opinion expressed in these reviews. Thankyou! xoxoxo

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