Literally by Lucy Keating + GIVEAWAY!

4/5 Stars
Published by HarperTeen
Published April 11th, 2017
Hardcover, 256 pages

Synopsis: A girl realizes her life is being written for her in this unique, smart love story that is Stranger Than Fiction for fans of Stephanie Perkins.

Annabelle’s life has always been Perfect with a capital P. Then bestselling young adult author Lucy Keating announces that she’s writing a new novel—and Annabelle is the heroine.

It turns out, Annabelle is a character that Lucy Keating created. And Lucy has a plan for her.

But Annabelle doesn’t want to live a life where everything she does is already plotted out. Will she find a way to write her own story—or will Lucy Keating have the last word?

The real Lucy Keating’s delightful contemporary romance blurs the line between reality and fiction, and is the perfect follow-up for readers who loved her debut Dreamology, which SLJ called, “a sweet, quirky romance with appealing characters.”

Lucy Keating immediately impressed me with her debut novel Dreamology, coming onto the scene with a fresh voice, creative storytelling, and immersive writing. With Dreamology being one of my favorite contemporary novels ever, I knew I was in for a treat when she announced Literally. This book is so unlike anything I have ever read before. Lucy Keating has a unique writing style that I adore. It is simplistic, but commands the page. She has an excellent way of setting an elaborate scene and keeping you involved in the atmosphere. Just as the synopsis says, Lucy Keating is able to blur the line between reality and fiction, creating an intriguing storyline that has you really feeling for the characters and getting caught between what is real and what is fiction. Once again, Lucy Keating has stunned me with her writing. 

The most exciting thing about this book is that you are able to physically detach the characters from their storyline and understand them through the fictional Lucy Keating's perspective. Throughout Literally we follow Annabelle, the main character of fictional Lucy's upcoming novel. Annabelle is snarky, incredibly organized and hard-headed, but relatable in a naive, sweet sort of sense. As her life unravels from the inside out, she soon realizes that fictional Lucy Keating has been planning out her life all along - the unseen misfortunes, her friends, the cute boy who magically appears in school. Instead of allowing this to stop her from living, Annabelle decides for herself that it is up to her to write her own story. Along with Annabelle comes Will Hale, aka the new boy in school, who is supposed to be the dreamiest, most perfect boy for Anna. However, I must say that Elliot, her brother's best friend, has him beat. This love triangle, for the most part, was a little unkempt. I believe  within the first few chapters Anna and Elliot have a little moment, but then fictional Lucy Keating introduces Will for her own professional gain (as she is writing Annabelle's life for her, ya know). I understand that this supports the claim of fictional Lucy basically rewriting AB's life for her and by all means the two romances are incredibly fluffy and cute, but I thought the exposition of this love triangle could have been better.

The primary reason as to why this book hit it off with me so well, is that I read it during a time where I was unsure of what I wanted to pursue in life. Annabelle is going through an extensive internal and external problem where everything she knew is being flipped upside down on her head. She's lost, alone, unsure of what is coming next or if she's going to lose the life that she knows. Instead of letting all these situations get to her, she makes the ultimate decision in the end that no one is allowed to take charge of her life except for herself. To me, during my little existential crisis, this meant a lot. I realized how important it is to make decisions about my future and my story on my own. While Literally is an incredibly light, cute contemporary romance, it teaches you the importance of writing your story. Fictional Lucy Keating made all these decisions for the Annabelle and the people in her life, but quite a bit of them were able to fight against the urges and rewrite what was already plotted out.

If you are ever in the mood for sweet contemporary romance that is a quick read, this is the perfect book for you. The premise for the plot is so interesting and if that synopsis didn't lure you in, then I am here to tell you that you need to read this book. It was a lot of fun to read, brought me tons of happiness, and even made me chuckle. With the creativity, imagination, and talent Lucy Keating has, I cannot wait to see what she conjures up for us next.

About the Author

Lucy lives in San Francisco, California. She grew up in Boston, Massachusetts, attended Williams College in the Berkshires, and still misses the East Coast very much.

When she's not writing, Lucy can usually be found obsessing over the latest music, inventing new flavors of ice cream, or having what she feels are perfectly acceptable conversations with her dog, Ernie.

You can follow Lucy on Instagram @lucy.keating, and Ernie The Dog @ernsboberns

Author Links: Website | Twitter | Goodreads | Instagram

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