Once and For All by Sarah Dessen
Louna, daughter of famed wedding planner Natalie Barrett, has seen every sort of wedding: on the beach, at historic mansions, in fancy hotels and clubs. Perhaps that’s why she’s cynical about happily-ever-after endings, especially since her own first love ended tragically. When Louna meets charming, happy-go-lucky serial dater Ambrose, she holds him at arm’s length. But Ambrose isn’t about to be discouraged, now that he’s met the one girl he really wants.
Sarah Dessen’s many, many fans will adore her latest, a richly satisfying, enormously entertaining story that has everything—humour, romance, and an ending both happy and imperfect, just like life itself.
Spoiler Free Section
I gave this book five stars and absolutely loved it. I was really apprehensive before going into this books because I hadn’t read anything by Sarah Dessen in almost 10 years so I really didn’t know if I would like it as much as I did before just because my reading tastes have changed but I should not have worried at all! If anything I enjoyed this book even more now than I did when I was a teenager.
The writing style completely sucked me in and kept me reading. I was reading this book as part of the try a chapter challenge in a read-a-thon and wasn’t expecting to continue with this story but once I started it I just couldn’t stop reading and ended up reading the whole thing in one day, which is unheard of for me. The story just flowed so effortlessly and kept you engaged the whole time.
All of the characters in this book were fantastic, they were all really interesting and I loved seeing their interactions. I really enjoyed the cynicism that came from Louna’s mother and William as well as the unfailing optimism that came from Ambrose. These characters created so many interesting and hilarious moments and I really enjoyed reading them all.
I really enjoyed being in this world of wedding planning, I knew that weddings could be stressful and dealing with high strung brides was entertaining. I love how it was all just boiled down to an art of getting through the stages of the wedding. There were also so many intricacies that I had never even thought about that were just organised to death in this book and it was really cool to see.
The thing that I think really made me keep reading was the mystery surrounding Ethan. I loved the flashback scenes and how we got to see the full prefect day that Louna and Ethan spent together over the span of the whole book. They were definitely some of my favourite parts. Their relationship was so sweet and effortless and just made me so incredibly happy to watch. When we get to the part where Ethan dies I was in tears, I don’t often cry in books but this one just really got to me, they were so in love and happy and then everything was just over in an instant.
I really enjoyed seeing Louna and Ambrose’s relationship, they couldn’t be more opposite, Louna with her cynicism about love and very organised life and Ambrose who was so carefree and open to love wherever it came from. I really enjoy seeing relationships that start out with hate and turn to love, it just shows so much more depth to me and the people really get to know each other and really see who they are.
I will definitely be picking up the other Sarah Dessen books on my shelf soon and I am hoping to love those ones as well. Sarah Dessen is definitely my favourite contemporary author and I would recommend her books to anyone who likes this genre.
Thank you for reading!