Hey guys! I've been really busy revising my book and travelling back and forth to Virginia recently. I hope all of you are having a great summer! Today I had the pleasure of working with Rockstar Book Tours on the book tour of Chasing Eveline. This book was such a fun read. It is the story of Ivy, a high school girl who is dealing with her mother leaving their family and her father's heart disease. She finds solace in a band, Chasing Eveline, that she used to listen to with her mother. This is the story of Ivy's quest to reunite the band for a comeback reunion concert (every fan of a band will understand the urge) and how she and her friend Matt bond through their journey together.
One of my favorite parts of this books was the music scene. The author completely captured what it is like to have a band be a huge aspect of your life. A few years ago I was very immersed in the music scene. I was Ivy- listening to music on the bus, wearing band t-shirts to school, stalking band members on twitter, attending every concert I could. This book did a great job of showing that experience, the feeling of music completely capturing what you are feeling in a moment. It took me back to high school, in a good way.
I also thought that this book handled the family dynamics really well. Illness and abandonment are two of the hardest topics to write about in YA, because each of them are so personal. They are experiences that are completely different for everyone, and broaching the subject in a way that is both touching and realistic is a very challenging thing. I've only seen it done well a few times, but Leslie Hauser managed it wonderfully.
I also loved the setting/ Irish theme. I'm Irish and I just visited Ireland for the first time. It made me miss that trip so much. Leslie Hauser wrote Ireland so well, she really captured the magic. I remember when the plane first touched down and I saw all of those fields and hills, I knew there was magic in that country, and I felt just like Ivy in that moment.
Overall, I would highly recommend this book. It is a very touching coming of age story for any music fan, or anybody in general. I would give it an overall rating of 4.5/5, and I would certainly recommend it to a friend. Thank you all for reading my review, and until next time, happy reading :)
Sixteen-year-old Ivy Higgins is the only student at Carmel Heights High School who listens to cassettes. And her binder is the only one decorated with album artwork by 80s band Chasing Eveline. Despite being broken-up since 1989, this rock band out of Ireland means everything to Ivy. They’re a reminder of her mom, who abandoned Ivy and her dad two years ago. Now the music of her mom’s favorite band is the only connection she has left.
Even though Ivy wavers between anger and a yearning to reconnect, she’s one-hundred percent certain she’s not ready to lose her mom forever. But the only surefire way to locate her would be at a Chasing Eveline concert. So with help from her lone friend Matt—an equally abandoned soul and indie music enthusiast—Ivy hatches a plan to reunite the band.
The road to Ireland won’t be easy, though. And not just because there is no road. Along the way they’ll have to win over their Lady Gaga-loving peers, tangle with some frisky meerkats, and oh yeah, somehow find and persuade the four members to play a reunion gig. It’s a near-impossible task, but Ivy has to try. If she can’t let go of the past, she’ll never be able to find joy in the present.
I am a YA writer and middle school teacher. I have a B.A. in English from UCLA and a Master’s degree in Educational Administration. I was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, and currently reside in Los Angeles, California, with my dog Mr. Darcy.
When I’m not living in fictional worlds inside my head, I run all sorts of distances, torture my body at CrossFit, and DVR entirely too many television shows. I dream of one day returning to the Midwest to live on a farm. Or perhaps owning a cookie delivery service.
My debut novel CHASING EVELINE releases in 2017 from Pen Name Publishing.