These ‘about me’ sections, or even sections that inform you about blogs, have never been my forte. Much to my chagrin, I was never taught the unwritten rules of what you are supposed to say. The links at the side of the blog – Twitter and Goodreads, for example – are liable to tell you more than I could ever say in words.

Mostly, this will be a book blog. I read a lot, and I love to share my views on my most recent reads. I try to read a little bit of everything, but if you look closely you’ll notice I will occasionally become obsessed with one specific genre for a short period of time. Old books, new books, yet to be released books – I read them all. If you’re an author looking for advance readers or just wish for more reviews of a book you’ve already released, please feel free to contact me. There is a contact form at the side of my blog – if you scroll down below the Twitter and Goodreads sidebar you will find it – so drop me a message and I’ll be sure to get back to you in double time. After all, finding new authors is what makes the book world go around.

Thanks for taking your time to read this. With a little bit of luck, you will find my blog much more interesting than this mundane introductory section.

Thursday, 20 July 2017

Review: Loving Kalvin

Loving Kalvin Loving Kalvin by Siobhan Davis
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Loving Kalvin in the fourth book in the Kennedy Boys series, but it is the first book in the series to work as a standalone novel. Although you do not need to read the Kyler books (the first three books in the Kennedy Boys series), it will help you somewhat if you have read those books. The Kyler books will give you a lot more background into the characters and some of the details brought up in this story. However, the Kyler books contain a taboo romance that will not be for everyone. Should the Kyler books not be your cup of tea, this book is still a fabulous read. If you are interested and you’re unafraid to read the taboo romance, I would certainly recommend reading this series in order. Each new book in the Kennedy Boys series brings something new, and it is great to see the characters develop from one book to the next. I can assure you, you’ll be pulled into the world of the Kennedy boys and you will be screaming out for more.

In all honesty, my feelings towards Loving Kalvin are much like my feelings towards Kalvin as a character. It’s poetic, when you stop and think about it. I was super excited to grab this book (I was excited to meet all of the characters in Finding Kyler), I was interested at the start of the book but I wasn’t as crazy about it as I had hoped I would be (I was interested in his character but I didn’t really like him as much as I’d hoped I would), but as things progressed I became truly addicted and fell in love in so many different ways (as his story developed I realised what a great character he was and my feelings towards him changed). As I said, it’s rather poetic when you stop and think about the parallels between the two.

As I said, I was super excited for this book. I became truly invested in Kalvin’s storyline throughout the Kyler books and I could not wait to find out where his story was going to head in the future. Although he is not my number one Kennedy boy, he managed to work his way much higher up my list than I’d thought he would. His storyline contained so much drama, there was so much to him, and I couldn’t wait to dive into more. It should come as no surprise to hear I dived right into this with a large quantity of excitement bubbling within.

At first, I wasn’t quite pulled into the story. Yes, I was curious. Yes, things were happening. Yes, I really enjoyed the introduction of new characters and the change of scenery. However, it didn’t quite hit me in the same way other books by Siobhan Davis have hit me upon the opening chapters. This is because the book is a lot slower and more character driven. It’s not a bad thing – I’ll go on shortly to explain why this is a wonderful thing – it merely means you need to stick with the story for a little bit longer before it starts to move at a rapid pace. You’re pulled in by all the little things, but the bigger aspects of the story that leave you losing your connection to the outside world due to a disappearance into the story come at a later date.

I will admit to another element of the story threatening to leave me unsure. The book is filled with lies and deceit – it’s a very substantial part of the story. One of the elements I worked out very early on. I’m not going to say what it was, as I have no wish to spoil the story, but I feared it would be a cliché in that the detail would be kept a secret to the reader until the very end. You can imagine my joy when Siobhan Davis introduced the readers to this element of the story before the thirty percent mark. It was a wonderful change to the usual tropes in the genre, and it’s at this point that I really fell into the story. I honestly cannot explain why I loved this change of approach so much. Such details are usually written in the synopsis and there is a lack of emotional attachment, or the detail is kept hidden from the reader and this makes it difficult to connect. Siobhan Davis once again demonstrates she is more than willing to push the usual boundaries aside, taking expected elements of a story and twisting it into something new and uniquely her own. I won’t say any more on this matter – again, those pesky spoilers – but I did love the way Siobhan Davis went about this, it added so much more to the story.

Because, honestly, every detail of this story makes it an extremely emotional read. There are a lot of difficult emotions as we deal with heavy issues, but there is also plenty of light to be seen. It is your happy ever after story, but to reach that end you need to work your way through the storm. Whilst in the storm, there are also moments of lighter weather. Your emotions will be ripped raw, but there are also those moments where you’ll let out a good giggle. Honestly, I let out so many booming laughs throughout. I’ve recently moved house and I can only imagine what my new neighbours must be thinking of me from the volume of my laughter. It really is a deeply emotional book. You have the good, you have the bad, and you have everything else in between that makes a book true to live.

You really will be so invested in these characters. There is so much development for them both – both within this book and between the Kyler books and this one. There is so much drama to be found – a very different kind of drama to that faced in the Kyler books, but still plenty of drama. Along with all the other goodies that make up a Siobhan Davis books: the sweet romance, the heavier issues, and the endless addiction. With all of the heavy stuff focused upon the characters, we’re given a moving book where we truly connect with the characters. It is another fabulous read from Siobhan Davis.

I know a lot of people are labelling this her best work, their favourite Siobhan Davis read, but I’m not sure if I can do such a thing. This is not due to a dislike of the story – far from it. Merely that I had a brainwave whilst reading this. I cannot put Siobhan Davis books into the same category. Her science fiction reads have a category. Her contemporary reads have a category. Her contemporary reads can be further split up into smaller categories. Keeping Kyler was, without a doubt, my favourite of the Kyler books, but to compare Kalvin’s story to Kyler’s story is… well, I cannot even think of an analogy that fits. They’re vastly different in terms of how they feel. Kyler’s story ripped me apart and Kalvin’s story sewed me back up. They’re both great reads – all the Siobhan Davis books I have read have been great reads – but they’ve very different reads.

If you loved Kyler’s story, then you really need to pick up Kalvin’s story. It really does add so much to the Kennedy Boys series. Not only is it a great standalone novel, it also does many additional things. The biggest aspect is that it has left me super interested to read The Irish Getaway. Book three-point-five cannot come soon enough. I have so many questions about what happened and I’m so excited to receive all the details. This book also opens us up for the next book in the series – Saving Brad. I’m going to be honest by saying Brad is my least favourite of the characters (it’s an unpopular opinion, I know, and I’m sorry for this), but the little snapshot at the end of this one does have me intrigued about what will happen in his story. I feel as though there are some pretty big things to come, and I’m rather excited to see what happens.

In short, once again, Siobhan Davis has delivered a winner.

View all my reviews

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