Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Bright Side by Kim Holden (4.5 stars)

About Bright Side

Everyone has one. 
Some are bigger than others. 
And when secrets are revealed, 
Some will heal you ... 
And some will end you. 

Kate Sedgwick’s life has been anything but typical. She’s endured hardship and tragedy, but throughout it all she remains happy and optimistic (there’s a reason her best friend Gus calls her Bright Side). Kate is strong-willed, funny, smart, and musically gifted. She’s also never believed in love. So when Kate leaves San Diego to attend college in the small town of Grant, Minnesota, the last thing she expects is to fall in love with Keller Banks. 

They both feel it. 
But they each have a reason to fight it. 
They each have a secret. 

And when secrets are revealed, 
Some will heal you … 
And some will end you. 

More information on Goodreads

Buy it on Amazon


For a young woman, Kate has faced more than her fair share of heartache. But through it all, she's had her best friend, Gus, by her side. He calls her Bright Side, because she doesn't just believe in happiness; she lives there. When Kate heads to college, she and Gus talk almost every day. He's on tour and she's pursing her goals.

But she has a secret. 

She meets Keller, who has his own secret, and they fight a mutual attraction until they no longer can. Love is the last thing either of them expected.

I'm not sure where to begin. Should I tell you that by the end I was reading a few lines and looking away to breathe, to calm the flowing tears, so I could read the next few lines and repeat the process? Would that deter you from an incredible story? I hope not. Because there's a bigger theme that rises from the ashes of the extreme sadness at the end.

Kate is a beacon of hope to anyone who knows her. She's not perfect; everyone has their moments. But, she's determined to enjoy the life she's been given. She loves two men, but in very different ways. They both need her and love her.

No spoilers here. I wouldn't ruin the experience of this book for anyone. I don't like books that play with your emotions. This didn't feel that way. It left me feeling empowered... brave (and that word will mean so much more after you read the book). More than that, I was inspired by one of Kate's much-repeated mantras... Do Epic!

You can't have happiness without sadness. In this story, you get plenty of both. After the last page, you'll wipe away your tears and vow to live your life to its fullest. To enjoy every single second. I know I did.

One more note: it did take me a few chapters to get into the story. Don't give up. Once you get to know Kate, you'll be the better for it.

Rating: 4.5 stars

About the Author

Some of my favorite things:

Reading (YA or New Adult), writing (especially on a productive day), the two coolest guys on the planet (my husband and son), my bicycle (hand built by my husband), Facebook (it’s an addiction at this point), iced coffee (hazelnut from McDonalds), and music (LOVE Sunset Sons, the 1975, Dredg, the xx, Balance and Composure, Teenage Bottlerocket, Manchester Orchestra, and 30 Seconds to Mars).

I also love dreaming. Big. Writing a few years ago was an elusive dream until I grabbed a hold of it with both hands and refused to let go. Keep chasing YOUR dreams.

Want more? Find me on Facebook or Goodreads.