BOOK REVIEW and GIVEAWAY: REGRETTING YOU by COLLEEN HOOVER @colleenhoover

Posted on December 16, 2019 by Nadene in 2019 Audio Book Challenge, 2019 New Release Challenge, 4.5 stars, Audio Book Reviews, Colleen Hoover, Giveaway, Montlake Romance, Netgalley / 10 Comments

Title: Regretting You
Author: Colleen Hoover
Publisher: Montlake Romance
Genre: Women’s Fiction, YA, Contemporary
Format: eArc/Audio
Source: Netgalley/Kindle Unlimited
Release Date: December 10, 2019
BUY: Amazon
Reading Challenge: 2019 New Release Challenge, Audio book Challenge, Netgalley and Edelweiss

Q&A with Author Colleen Hoover

Question: You are ‘label-less’ in the fact that you write in several genres. Readers never know what to expect next. If someone asks, how do you label yourself?

Colleen: When I self-published my first novel I had no idea what genre to put it in. I thought I had written a drama but it turns to that I had written a romance. I’ve learned a lot since then, but I still don’t put a lot of weight in genre when I write. When your best friend is begging you to read a book, it’s not going to matter what genre it is when someone you trust is passionate about the story.

Question : To keep all of your stories and characters straight, you must be very organized.

Colleen: I’m the most disorganized person you will ever meet! I have no schedule. I can’t wake up before nine in the morning. I probably don’t go to bed until like three in the morning. I usually work about 16 hours a day.

Question: What happens if you get blocked when you are writing?

Colleen: If I get stuck writing, I go for a drive and play music. Music really helps me plot. I love The Avett Brothers, X Ambassadors, Airborne Toxic Event…I could go on and on.

Question : What can you tell readers about your latest release Regretting You?

Colleen: I would spoil it if I told you about it! Most of my books are like that. I can’t say what they are about or it spoils it. But I can say that Regretting You is told from a dual point-of-view centered on the inner lives of both a teen and adult protagonist.

Question: Sounds like lots of different types of readers will be interested!

Colleen: Absolutely. I wanted to write a book that bridged the gap between young adult and contemporary romance so that mothers can read with their daughters. I think it’s exciting to see people sharing reading experiences.

This book left me breathless. This is my fourth time reading Hoover, and she is a word maestro. Her stories, which I have read so far, elicited a wide range of emotions, which varied from screaming, crying, laughing and smiling. Her latest novel Regretting You had the same effect.
The story started out with a glimpse in the lives of four teenagers two of whom were related by blood. They appeared to be happy, but things were not as they seem.  A life-changing event occurred that changes the whole dynamics of their relationship. Fast-forward seventeen years later, two of the four teens, Morgan and Chris were married and they have a daughter named Clara. Everything thing appeared to be going well, but then tragedy struck and Morgan and Clara’s life would be forever changed.
One moment I wanted to scream at Morgan and Clara and next I found myself sympathizing with their plight. Morgan refuses to be forthright with her daughter, and Clara’s rebellious streak reared its ugly head.  This led to a breakdown in their relationship. Their actions, however, were a product of the tragedy that had invaded their lives.  The situations they faced daily proved more than they could handle and they ended up making choices, which hurt each other.
Told from alternate POVs the story propelled me into the minds of Clara and Morgan. Their pain resonated within me, which allowed me to understand the reasoning behind their actions, not that I agreed with them all.
The author introduced an element of romance, which I enjoyed watching develop. However, I took issue with Clara’s actions in navigating her new relationship. There was one particular thing she did that made me angry, all because she wanted to get back at her mother. I found her actions irrational and irresponsible. Regarding Morgan’s relationship, I am glad she got her second chance.
Morgan was the epitome of what a good mother should be. Everything she did was out of love for Clara. She sacrificed her happiness to ensure that her daughter never made the mistakes she did.
Conclusion/Recommendation
Regretting You is a poignant story of infidelity, betrayal, grief, sacrifices, love, healing, forgiveness, honesty, friendships and family.  It was beautifully written and one I would recommend to adults and young adults.

Narration
I received an ARC, but when I discovered it was available through Kindle Unlimited with an option for audio, I jumped at the chance to listen to the audio version.
I had a great time listening to the voices of Tanya Eby and Lauren Ezzo. They handled the emotional scenes well. I thought Lauren did an excellent job with Clara’s character. I loved how well she portrayed Clara’s tantrums. Overall, it was a good listen.


Excerpt

Despite knowing I just pissed my mother off by being half an hour late for curfew, I still can’t stop smiling. That kiss with Miller was worth it. I bring my fingers to my lips.

I’ve never been kissed like that. The guys I’ve kissed in the past all seemed like they were in a hurry, wanting to shove their tongue in my mouth before I changed my mind.

Miller was the opposite. He was so patient, yet in a chaotic way. It was like he’d thought about kissing me so often that he wanted to savor every second of it.

I don’t know that I’ll ever not smile when I think about that kiss. It kind of makes me nervous for school tomorrow. I’m not sure where that kiss leaves us, but it felt like it was a statement. I just don’t know what exactly that statement was.

My phone buzzes in my back pocket. I roll over and pull it out, then fall onto my back again. It’s a text from Miller.

Miller: I don’t know about you, but sometimes when something significant happens, I get home and think of all the things I wish had gone differently. All the things I wish I would have said. 

Me: Is that happening now? 

Miller: Yes. I don’t feel like I was entirely forthcoming with you. 

I roll onto my stomach, hoping to ease the nausea that just passed through me. It was going so well…

Me: What weren’t you honest about? 

Miller: I was honest. Just not entirely forthcoming, if there’s a difference. I left a lot out of our conversation that I want you to know. 

Me: Like what? 

Miller: Like why I’ve liked you for as long as I have. 

I wait for him to elaborate, but he doesn’t. I’m staring at my phone with so much intensity that I almost throw it when it rings unexpectedly. It’s Miller’s phone number. I hesitate before answering it, because I rarely ever talk on the phone. I much prefer texting. But he knows I have my phone in my hand, so I can’t very well send it to voice mail. I swipe my finger across the screen and then roll off the bed and head to my bathroom for more privacy. I sit on the edge of the tub.

“Hello?” 

“Hey,” he says. 

“Sorry. It’s too much to text.” 

“You’re kind of freaking me out with all the innuendos.” 

“Oh. No, it’s all good. Don’t be nervous. I just should have said this to you in person.” Miller inhales a deep breath, and then on the exhale, he starts talking. “When I was fifteen, I watched you in a school play. You had the lead role, and at one point, you performed a monologue that went on for like two whole minutes. You were so convincing and you looked so heartbroken I was ready to walk onto the stage and hug you. When the play was finally over and the actors came back out onto the stage, you were smiling and laughing, and there wasn’t a trace of that character left in you. I was in awe, Clara. You have this charisma about you that I don’t think you’re aware of, but it’s captivating. I was a scrawny kid as a sophomore, and even though I’m a year older than you, I hadn’t quite filled out yet, and I had acne and felt inferior to you, so I never worked up the courage to approach you. Another year went by, and I continued to admire you from afar. Like that time you ran for school treasurer and tripped walking off the stage, but you jumped up and did this weird little kick and threw your arms up in the air and made the entire audience laugh. Or that time Mark Avery popped your bra strap in the hallway, and you were so sick of him doing it that you followed him to his classroom, reached inside your hoodie, and took off your bra and then threw it at him. I remember you yelling something like, ‘If you want to touch a bra so damn bad, just keep it, you perv!’ Then you stormed out. It was epic. Everything you do is epic, Clara. Which is why I never had the courage to approach you, because an epic girl needs an equally epic guy, and I guess I’ve just never felt epic enough for you. I’ve said epic so many times in the last fifteen seconds—I’m so sorry.”

He’s out of breath when he finally stops talking.

I’m smiling so hard my cheeks ache. I had no idea he felt this way. No idea.

I wait a few seconds to make sure he’s done; then I finally respond. I’m pretty sure he can hear from my voice alone that I’m smiling. “First of all, it’s hard to believe you were ever insecure. And second, I think you’re pretty epic, too, Miller. Always have. Even when you were scrawny and had acne.”

He laughs a little. “Yeah?”
“Yeah.”

I can hear him sigh. “Glad I got that off my chest, then. See you at school tomorrow?”

“Good night.”

We end the call, and I don’t know how long I sit and stare at my phone.

Morgan Grant and her sixteen-year-old daughter, Clara, would like nothing more than to be nothing alike.

Morgan is determined to prevent her daughter from making the same mistakes she did. By getting pregnant and married way too young, Morgan put her own dreams on hold. Clara doesn’t want to follow in her mother’s footsteps. Her predictable mother doesn’t have a spontaneous bone in her body.

With warring personalities and conflicting goals, Morgan and Clara find it increasingly difficult to coexist. The only person who can bring peace to the household is Chris—Morgan’s husband, Clara’s father, and the family anchor. But that peace is shattered when Chris is involved in a tragic and questionable accident. The heartbreaking and long-lasting consequences will reach far beyond just Morgan and Clara.

While struggling to rebuild everything that crashed around them, Morgan finds comfort in the last person she expects to, and Clara turns to the one boy she’s been forbidden to see. With each passing day, new secrets, resentment, and misunderstandings make mother and daughter fall further apart. So far apart, it might be impossible for them to ever fall back together.

Author Biography


Colleen Hoover is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of several novels, including the bestselling women’s fiction novel It Ends with Us and the bestselling psychological thriller Verity. She has won the Goodreads Choice Award for Best Romance three years in a row—for Confess (2015), It Ends with Us (2016), and Without Merit (2017). Confess was adapted into a seven-episode online series. In 2015, Hoover and her family founded the Bookworm Box, a bookstore and monthly subscription service that offers signed novels donated by authors. All profits go to various charities each month to help those in need. Hoover lives in Texas with her husband and their three boys. Visit www.colleenhoover.com.
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