Review: What If by Rebecca Donovan

What If by Rebecca Donovan
Release Date: September 16, 2014
Publisher: Forever
Pages: 352
Source: book provided by NetGalley for review



What if you had a second chance to meet someone for the first time?
Cal Logan is shocked to see Nicole Bentley sitting across from him at a coffee shop thousands of miles from their hometown. After all, no one has seen or heard from her since they graduated over a year ago.

Except this girl isn’t Nicole.

She looks exactly like Cal’s shy childhood crush, but her name is Nyelle Preston and she has no idea who he is. This girl is impulsive and daring, her passion for life infectious. The complete opposite of Nicole. Cal finds himself utterly fascinated-and falling hard. But Nyelle is also extremely secretive. And the closer he comes to finding out what she’s hiding, the less he wants to know.

When the secrets from the past and present collide, one thing becomes clear: Nothing is what it seems.

Review: This is one of the best books I have read in a while. I couldn’t put it down until I found out the answer to my main question, “Why?”.

Just like Cal, I couldn’t wait until Nyelle was mentioned again. For many people, Nyelle will be a very relatable character. I knew people like her growing up and several of them have her personality today. She is by far my favorite character in this book. I fell in love with her personality and her kind heart. Poor Cal can’t figure out why he is so obsessed with her. He swears that she is his childhood crush. When secrets are exposed, the truth comes out and it won’t be what you expect.

At first, the flipping from past to present every other chapter was aggravating to me. When I read further into the book though, I realized there was really no other way to organize the chapters. It made the story more powerful by not knowing the history of the characters first. The whole story kept me intrigued and wanting to know more. Also, I’m really glad that the main character, Cal, was the one telling this story. Throughout the book, you see the other characters as children and see how they thought and felt but you never see their current ones. It really added to the story. My heart broke for the characters, every single one of them. I was left crying my eyes out at the end.

What If will leave you valuing your friends and family more than you already do. The ending was not what I expected at all. I can’t wait to re-read it because I feel like knowing how it ends will completely change the story. It is a very emotional story filled with love, friendship, mystery and a few laughs.

Favorite Quote: “Then… let the stars take it away and make everything better. And when the sun comes up, and those stars disappear, they take all the hurt with them.”