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A Love Hate Thing

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When theyre stuck under one roof, the house may not be big enough for their hateor their love. When Tyson Trice finds himself tossed into the wealthy coastal community of Pacific Hills, hes ready for the questions, the stares and the feeling of not belonging. Not that he cares. After recovering from being shot and surviving the rough streets of Lindenwood, he doesnt care When they’re stuck under one roof, the house may not be big enough for their hate…or their love. When Tyson Trice finds himself tossed into the wealthy coastal community of Pacific Hills, he’s ready for the questions, the stares and the feeling of not belonging. Not that he cares. After recovering from being shot and surviving the rough streets of Lindenwood, he doesn’t care about anyone or anything, much less how the rest of his life will play out. Golden girl Nandy Smith has spent most of her life building the pristine image that it takes to fit in when it comes to her hometown Pacific Hills where image is everything. After learning that her parents are taking in a troubled teen boy, Nandy fears her summer plans, as well as her reputation, will go up in flames. Now with Trice living under the same roof, the wall between their bedrooms feels as thin as the line between love and hate. Beneath the angst, their growing attraction won’t be denied. Through time, Trice brings Nandy out of her shell, and Nandy attempts to melt the ice that’s taken Trice’s heart and being. Only, with the ever-present pull back to the Lindenwood streets, it’ll be a wonder if Trice makes it through this summer at all.


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When theyre stuck under one roof, the house may not be big enough for their hateor their love. When Tyson Trice finds himself tossed into the wealthy coastal community of Pacific Hills, hes ready for the questions, the stares and the feeling of not belonging. Not that he cares. After recovering from being shot and surviving the rough streets of Lindenwood, he doesnt care When they’re stuck under one roof, the house may not be big enough for their hate…or their love. When Tyson Trice finds himself tossed into the wealthy coastal community of Pacific Hills, he’s ready for the questions, the stares and the feeling of not belonging. Not that he cares. After recovering from being shot and surviving the rough streets of Lindenwood, he doesn’t care about anyone or anything, much less how the rest of his life will play out. Golden girl Nandy Smith has spent most of her life building the pristine image that it takes to fit in when it comes to her hometown Pacific Hills where image is everything. After learning that her parents are taking in a troubled teen boy, Nandy fears her summer plans, as well as her reputation, will go up in flames. Now with Trice living under the same roof, the wall between their bedrooms feels as thin as the line between love and hate. Beneath the angst, their growing attraction won’t be denied. Through time, Trice brings Nandy out of her shell, and Nandy attempts to melt the ice that’s taken Trice’s heart and being. Only, with the ever-present pull back to the Lindenwood streets, it’ll be a wonder if Trice makes it through this summer at all.

30 review for A Love Hate Thing

  1. 5 out of 5

    Berit☀️✨

    Whitney D. Grandison has written a compelling debut. This was kind of a mash up of the friends to lovers/enemies to lovers trope. Tyson Trice has just gone through a major tragedy and the loss of his beloved Pops. Five months away from turning 18 he goes to live with old family friends who live in an affluent area of Southern California. When they were little Trice and Mandy were the best of friends, but now Mandy is not quite certain of Trice because of his background. You dont need to be a Whitney D. Grandison has written a compelling debut. This was kind of a mash up of the friends to lovers/enemies to lovers trope. Tyson Trice has just gone through a major tragedy and the loss of his beloved Pops. Five months away from turning 18 he goes to live with old family friends who live in an affluent area of Southern California. When they were little Trice and Mandy were the best of friends, but now Mandy is not quite certain of Trice because of his background. You don’t need to be a rocket scientist or a romance aficionado to figure out where this one’s going. Even though this story was predictable and somewhat clichéd I still enjoyed the story. Trice, (Who prefers to go by his last name rather than his first name, because he was named after his father) was a lovable sympathetic character. Although he was constantly contradicting himself, there were some definite conflicts between his words and his actions. Then there was Mandy, what a spoiled entitled princess she was. I grew up in Southern California somewhere between these fictional cities of Linderwood and Pacific Hills. This is such a diverse checkerboarded area that I really doubt anyone would automatically assume someone was a “thug“ just because they were from a bad neighborhood. Well that is with the exception of dear Mandy. Even though we were constantly told what a sweet person she was I never saw that through her actions. I honestly thought Trice could’ve done much better for himself, possibly with her best friend. But I guess the heart wants what it wants. The story was told from both characters perspectives and I really got quite annoyed when I was in Mandy’s head. While I appreciated the diversity in the story I thought occasionally it was a bit stereotypical. I guess this is all to say I’m a little conflicted on this one. On one handI thought the characters were very vivid and well drawn, but on the other hand I really was not rooting for this couple. I was definitely wanting the best for Tyson, but I could’ve cared less what happened to Mandy. So I guess the title is super appropriate, it was kind of a love-hate thing! this book in emojis. 📱 💰 📓 🎵 🏖 🎧🎧🎧 The audiobook was narrated by Adenrele Ojo and Barrie Buckner. I thought both these narrators did an outstanding job and really added the perfect voice to these characters (even that Mandy). *** Big thank you to Harlequin and Harper Audio for my gifted copy of this book. All opinions are my own. *** For more of my reviews and bookish thoughts please visit my blog

  2. 4 out of 5

    Kayla Brunson

    DNF. I cant read anymore of this. Its 2020, can we please have books about black teens where the characters arent stereotypical. DNF. I can’t read anymore of this. It’s 2020, can we please have books about black teens where the characters aren’t stereotypical.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Ms. Woc Reader

    When I first heard about this book I was excited. The cover was beautiful and I was on the prowl for a YA contemporary romance featuring black teens. I thought I would adore this book but it might be my biggest disappointment of 2019. As I read I was transported to those Kimani Tru books(also published by Harlequin) of my young teen years. This book had all the same dated slang and similar trite writing. Except this book is set in 2020. You'd never be able to tell with all the references to the When I first heard about this book I was excited. The cover was beautiful and I was on the prowl for a YA contemporary romance featuring black teens. I thought I would adore this book but it might be my biggest disappointment of 2019. As I read I was transported to those Kimani Tru books(also published by Harlequin) of my young teen years. This book had all the same dated slang and similar trite writing. Except this book is set in 2020. You'd never be able to tell with all the references to the early 2000s from movies to tv to music. People who are 17 in 2020 were not jamming to B2K as kids, watching You Got Served, or The Proud Family and Static Shock. All of that was popular when they were too young to be tuned in to pop culture. It's like the author wrote this book back when she was a teen and used this story to try and relive her glory days. Has she spoken to teens in 2019? This book needed a black editor or at least black beta readers so badly! Dated dialogue and pop culture references aside this book was simply not entertaining. It floundered on and on with no real purpose and more than halfway through this lengthy story I found myself skimming to the end. Tyson was so laughable. One minute he's a wannabe thug. He's a bad boy but not really bad. His friends are the bad ones and he just tags along with no refusal but he's not really into what they do. At one point he talks about an annoying neighbor he had as a child. And his friends going out of their way to set her off. Then he says one night she was robbed and killed. He wondered if his friends did it. But he just let it go. He's also a hotep who reads Roots and The Color Purple for fun, preaches about back when black people were kings and queens, and tries to school Nandy in black culture. Why is he is the first one to introduce Nandy to the origin of her name instead of her parents? Nandy is a prissy rich girl who is supposed to be root worthy. She's more annoying than anything else. She spends a chunk of the time looking down on Tyson until she decides she's in love with him. Then despite having a boyfriend acts possessive over Tyson. Even to the point of being rude to her best friend who is showing an interest in him. Why did this black love book have me almost rooting for the white girl to take him away? Our author keeps trying to sell this idea of Nandy and Trice having been in love since 7 years old. At one point Nandy reflects on Trice being her first kiss and heartbreak back when they were 7. It's a little creepy. And this idea that they held a flame for each other despite not seeing each other in 10 years is ridiculous. One minute there would be meaningful dialogue and discussion like Tyson and Nandy expressing their thoughts on the term African-American and their feelings as black Americans. The next we got nonsense like this, "This ain't the hood, Tyson We do not braid hair on the front step," I said." This story had potential since it put black teens in an environment we usually don't read about them in but unfortunately it just fell flat. I received an ARC from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. https://womenofcolorreadtoo.blogspot....

  4. 5 out of 5

    Nursebookie

    "A LOVE HATE THING" BY Whitney D. Grandison I thoroughly enjoyed this heartwarming read about Tyson Trice and Nandy Smith. Tyson who has a protective shell he has built around him from living in a tough neighborhood and now have undergone a terrible family tragedy and now will need to live in Pacific Hills an upscale and rich neighborhood. A huge change for him coming from Lindenwood. Nandy Smith has a reputation to uphold having lived in Pacific Hills her life. Now will she risk her reputation "A LOVE HATE THING" BY Whitney D. Grandison I thoroughly enjoyed this heartwarming read about Tyson Trice and Nandy Smith. Tyson who has a protective shell he has built around him from living in a tough neighborhood and now have undergone a terrible family tragedy and now will need to live in Pacific Hills an upscale and rich neighborhood. A huge change for him coming from Lindenwood. Nandy Smith has a reputation to uphold having lived in Pacific Hills her life. Now will she risk her reputation for her family taking in a troubled boy Tyson. I found the story to be heartfelt and emotional. I enjoy a the to love relationship where the attraction is undeniable. I found that over the time reading this lengthy book, I did form an attachment for the characters especially reading about Tyson's troubled past. Overall, I was satisfied with the ending and this was a great love story that Grandison was able to execute. I enjoyed this read very much!

  5. 4 out of 5

    Fanna

    As a fan of the hate-to-love trope, I'm ready for a book that has both 'love' and 'hate' in the title.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    All these opinions are my own. I personally did not enjoy this book, maybe others will but I'll list the pros and cons I had with this book below. Pros: - The concept of two black people from different walks of life falling in love is rare to have especially highlighting two intelligent black teens. - I liked how the female relationships were not affected by the boys. - The representation of adaption was beautiful! - The family bonds displayed were amazing - Loved that most of the men/boys handled All these opinions are my own. I personally did not enjoy this book, maybe others will but I'll list the pros and cons I had with this book below. Pros: - The concept of two black people from different walks of life falling in love is rare to have especially highlighting two intelligent black teens. - I liked how the female relationships were not affected by the boys. - The representation of adaption was beautiful! - The family bonds displayed were amazing - Loved that most of the men/boys handled women with respect Cons: - Black trauma was a huge plot point and it was not handled in a way that I could appreciate. Due to the characters treating Trice as "better then other guys" it criminalized everyone else. Everyone else in that neighboorhood also had a rough upbringing but Trice was the only one worthy of a good life? Also, they claim this neighborhood to be middle class and not bad but spend most of the time talking poorly about it and the need to escape it. - The stereotyping of Nandy and Trice was apparent. Both characters stereotypical black people either in being sassy or scary. The story never broke down those stereotypes. Nandy was selfish and rude for most of the book painting black teens as "hysterical." I understood that appearance meant a lot to her but the way she treated her friends and family did not show a loving person, except a few rare moments she thought beyond herself. - There were a lot of contradicts where a character would say it's okay to cry but then later call it weak. Or Nandy would say she's not judgemental but turn around a judge everyone, even her closest friends. - There was a HUGE lack of fun/loving/joyful moments. Most of the book the angst was Nandy avoiding her feeling due to jealousy. - The dialogue was cringey. This book was trying to tackle too much and I hope in the future we can have black love stories without exploiting black trauma. I would not recommend

  7. 5 out of 5

    Last Book Marauder

    I am so sad that this book just did not work for me. It had everything going for it: beautiful cover, enemies-to-lovers, young adult. However, in spite of all of that, it felt like a chore to finish this. Nandy is one of the worst characters I have ever read. She is a selfish, entitled, spoiled, rich girl and I never really came around to liking her. The reader is told many times that Nandy is actually very sweet and welcoming and incredibly involved in her school and her neighborhood - but we I am so sad that this book just did not work for me. It had everything going for it: beautiful cover, enemies-to-lovers, young adult. However, in spite of all of that, it felt like a chore to finish this. Nandy is one of the worst characters I have ever read. She is a selfish, entitled, spoiled, rich girl and I never really came around to liking her. The reader is told many times that Nandy is actually very sweet and welcoming and incredibly involved in her school and her neighborhood - but we never see that. We only see her whine about every tiny thing that doesn't go exactly her way. (view spoiler)[Nandy also becomes incredibly possessive over Trice even though she has a boyfriend and her best friend likes him. (hide spoiler)] She does become slightly more tolerable after the first half of the book, but she never lives up to this character she was painted to be. If she has all these amazing qualities, as I reader, I want to see her exhibiting them. The writing also felt a little inconsistent to me. Several times the author wrote absolutely beautiful paragraphs about race, adoption, and friendships. Then have her seventeen year old characters say things like "jump street" or complain about being embarrassed because Trice was having his hair braided outside and her house "ain't the hood." (view spoiler)[Trice and Nandy's relationship was also super strange to me. They have this pretty intense connection from when they were kids, then she is a massive brat to him when he comes to stay with her family, they patch it up and become friends for, like, a page, then she hates him again and is even more bratty, and then they are in love. It was just too much. (hide spoiler)] Plus, the actual plot if the book was unoriginal and pretty bland in a majority of the book. The minor conflicts were incredibly repetitive and the major conflict was just glossed over. There is also a lot of mentions of religion, but for no real purpose. It doesn't play a real role in the story, but is referenced many times. I kept expecting it to mean something in the end... but, no. With all that said, I did like several things from this book. I already mentioned that parts of the writing were done well. I loved that the author touched on boys dealing with their emotions, loss, and abuse. I also really enjoyed Trice's character. Learning about his past and watching him grow and heal was done very well. I loved his appreciation for his heritage and sharing that with the Smith's. ***Copy received from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review***

  8. 5 out of 5

    rae ✌️

    You were my Neverland. I received an ARC from Netgalley and Harlequin TEEN in exchange for an honest review. wow whitney grandison, way to come out swingin' with your debut! this was an absolute roller-coaster ride start to finish, and lowkey felt like i was watching a season of a delicious teen drama (and now reading the acknowledgements and seeing grandison was greatly inspired by the OC, it totally clicks!) this love story is about two teenagers from completely opposite worlds. trice was You were my Neverland. I received an ARC from Netgalley and Harlequin TEEN in exchange for an honest review. wow whitney grandison, way to come out swingin' with your debut! this was an absolute roller-coaster ride start to finish, and lowkey felt like i was watching a season of a delicious teen drama (and now reading the acknowledgements and seeing grandison was greatly inspired by the OC, it totally clicks!) this love story is about two teenagers from completely opposite worlds. trice was born and raised in lindenwood, the place where boys like him are destined to die. but trice isn't like the others; after getting shot by his father and almost dying, he gets a second chance to escape fate by living with a wealthy family in pacific hills, and reconnect with a girl who he thought lost to him almost ten years prior. nandy is said girl, and she's everything trice is not. obsessed with looking right in front of her peers and dating the most popular guy in school, nandy is less than pleased to be letting a lindenwood boy into her preciously upkept life, even if said boy is her first love from years ago. the title a love hate thing perfectly sums up their relationship. they hate each other. they love each other. they hate each other again. the cycle continues, on and on and on, until eventually walls break down, revelations are found, and a long-lost love can't stay hidden any longer. grandinson perfectly takes the love-hate trope and pulls the best aspects from it, leaving you on the edge of your seat as you wonder if trice and nandy will ever get their acts together. put that against the luscious backdrop of a california summer, and you've got yourself one hell of a story. even though i absolutely adored this though (the character work is truly amazing, and the side characters are equally as loveable as the main ones), my one gripe is that this is about 100 pages too long. the story easily could've been told in a shorter amount of time, and when half of the action is kids partying at nightclubs, it can get old fast. but, that's literally the only thing i was annoyed with. everything else was amazing, and i can't wait to have everyone else read this when it releases. pick it up if you like enemies to friends to lover romances, teen drama, and steamy romance.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Jessica | Booked J

    Blog | Twitter | Instagram | You can find my review here. As always, a copy of this book was provided by the authors in exchange for my honest review. This does not effect my opinion in any way. We are always taught to never judge a book by its cover. Still, you have to admire that gorgeous and colourful illustration set up on A Love Hate Thing. While part of my interest was sparked by its gorgeous artwork, the majority of my interest came on after reading the synopsis. It definitely had the Blog | Twitter | Instagram | You can find my review here. As always, a copy of this book was provided by the authors in exchange for my honest review. This does not effect my opinion in any way. We are always taught to never judge a book by its cover. Still, you have to admire that gorgeous and colourful illustration set up on A Love Hate Thing. While part of my interest was sparked by its gorgeous artwork, the majority of my interest came on after reading the synopsis. It definitely had the air of something special. Fortunately for us: Whitney D. Grandison's debut is what YA contemporary dreams are made of, and is highly enjoyable and maybe a little nostalgic. Taking my time with A Love Hate Thing was difficult. It is the kind of novel you want to read in one sitting. Once I met these characters, I was quick to want to know everything. While there were moments in the narration that I felt 'meh' about, mainly choppy use of stereotypes and some incoherent and outdated references (as another reviewer before me has already stated), there was far more good to A Love Hate Thing than bad. But, let's focus on the basics. The first I noticed about this debut was that Grandison's prose is addictive and easy to slip into. As a reader, I like writing to be witty and sharp to the point. Add in characters that are developed to be complex, flawed, and undeniably youthful, and you've got the perfect balance of archetypes. Bonus points if you sprinkle in romance that features tropes I adore. A Love Hate Thing offers up many tropes that are frustratingly indulgent, angsty and intriguing. If you are like me and are a sucker for childhood friends who meet again later in life, you will definitely appreciate this novel. Not only does it feature the use of this trope, there is a specific hate-to-love vibe to the romance at the center. Ultimately, A Love Hate Thing proves to be a fun contemporary that will surely give readers an array of emotions.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Beth

    * I received an arc of this from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review * Neither of these characters were redeemable to me. The relationship felt forced and fake. The internalized racism was hard to read and didnt seem to get any better as the book went on. Out main character, Trice, has to move in with a random family that his parents were friends with, after his family all passed away. Turns out it was a family that he went to visit for two years between the ages of 5 and 7 while his * I received an arc of this from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review * Neither of these characters were redeemable to me. The relationship felt forced and fake. The internalized racism was hard to read and didn’t seem to get any better as the book went on. Out main character, Trice, has to move in with a random family that his parents were friends with, after his family all passed away. Turns out it was a family that he went to visit for two years between the ages of 5 and 7 while his grandpa worked for them. This tried to be an enemies to lovers. Trice hated Nandy because she was rich. Nandy hates Trice because he was from ~Lindenwood~ which automatically made him a fugitive, thug, drug dealer etc etc. It took until about 77% into the book for Nandy to stop referring to Lindenwood as anything but a cesspool of awfulness. From the very start, she thought Trice was a bad guy and saw the worst in him and it didn’t really get any better. Oh but then they both suddenly realized that they loved each other at the age of 7 and the only reason Nandy hated Trice is because he “left her”. And Trice never hated Nandy. So then they fell back in love and everything is perfect. Right? Wrong! At every possible turn, Nandy still found ways to not trust Trice, to look down on where he’s from, to treat him like he was below her. There were absolutely no redeeming qualities to Nandy and I didn’t find Trice that interesting. So unfortunately this is a pass for me.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Becca

    Thank you to Netgalley & Inkyard Press for providing me with a copy of A Love Hate Thing in exchange for an honest review! Nandy Smith: Lets get the elephant out of the room real quick Nandy Smith is officially on my list of least favorite fictional characters. It would be completely different if she started off as a spoiled and entitled brat, and gradually changed throughout the read but theres not one point where I felt her character was redeemed. Sure, theres a time where she, I guess, Thank you to Netgalley & Inkyard Press for providing me with a copy of A Love Hate Thing in exchange for an honest review! Nandy Smith: Let’s get the elephant out of the room real quick — Nandy Smith is officially on my list of least favorite fictional characters. It would be completely different if she started off as a spoiled and entitled brat, and gradually changed throughout the read — but there’s not one point where I felt her character was redeemed. Sure, there’s a time where she, I guess, tries to be nicer, but the moment Trice says anything that upsets her, she goes back to being the Nandy that we met at the beginning. She also has huge jealousy issues and wants Trice to herself & this is while she has her boyfriend, Chad. The moment her best friend showed that she had an interest in Trice, and Trice seemed decently happy for once — Nandy made sure to swoop in and ruin it. & then we have her judgment of Trice. She freaked out when he was sitting on her steps getting his braided hair because apparently that’s not a thing they do in Pacific Hills. Throughout the read, she continued to look down on him; mainly because of him being from Lindenwood. Tyson Trice: I’m not going to speak too much about the stereotyping that occurs in this book (& wow, it’s a Mess), but please check out other reviews on here that discuss it! In the end, he was the only lead I cared about. & granted, there were times when he drove me insane as well. However, I did root for him throughout the read & he is the only thing making this book okay. Nandy & Trice: If it wasn’t already clear with my Nandy opinions, I did not care for this ship at all. It was incredibly off-and-on & kept going back between love-and-hate, which okay I get it, it’s in the title of the book, but holy heck did it switch to hate over the smallest & dumbest things. They were constantly triggering each other throughout the read. Plus, there is 0 chemistry at all. & no, I don’t care that they ‘loved’ each other at the age of seven. It’s weird and I hate it. Religion Mentions: There’s a lot of mention of God in A Love Hate Thing, which cool — total respect, dude. However, it was pointless & in the end, didn’t even mean anything at all. After what Trice dealt with, he ended up losing his faith, and now everyone wants to tell him that they hope he finds his way back. It just felt so incredibly out-of-place in this book. Cringe Dialogue & Pop-Culture References: To put it simply, the dialogue is le cringe. As for pop culture references, I was here for it. But that was because I’m pushing 30 & know perfectly well what they’re referencing. But, y’all???? If I was the age that this book was marketed for, I probably would have been so lost. But I would like to give the shoutout to both leads musical tastes because I too love Kendrick Lamar and Lana del Ray. A Drag: My final complaint & note on A Love Hate Thing is that it felt incredibly too long. I almost DNF’ed multiple times.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Lorrea - WhatChaReadin'?

    When Tyson Trice reappears in Nandy Smith's life 10 years after she had last seen him, she knew right away, he wasn't that same seven year old boy she used to play with. Trice is coming to live with the Smith's after the tragic death of his parents. He is angry and hurting and this is the last place he wants to be. But will he be able to come out of his funk and find the friendship he once had with Nandy? Will he be able to step away from his old life and try to build a new one with these people When Tyson Trice reappears in Nandy Smith's life 10 years after she had last seen him, she knew right away, he wasn't that same seven year old boy she used to play with. Trice is coming to live with the Smith's after the tragic death of his parents. He is angry and hurting and this is the last place he wants to be. But will he be able to come out of his funk and find the friendship he once had with Nandy? Will he be able to step away from his old life and try to build a new one with these people who are nothing like him? Thank you to NetGalley and Harlequin for the opportunity to read and review this book. I could not put this book down. I read it all of the time. I stayed up late, I got up early. Just when I thought I knew what was going to happen, I was shocked by what actually did happen. This is a story about young rekindled love. Trice and Nandy first meet each other when they are seven years old. Trice's grandfather does yard work in the neighborhood where Nandy lives and Trice plays with her while he does his work. Trice let's Nandy boss him around and they have a little puppy love. Then all of a sudden the visits stop and Nandy doesn't hear from Trice again until he's 17 and a very different person. Did you ever have someone in your life when you were a kid that you played with all of the time and just knew you were going to be friends forever. But something happens and they are no longer a part of your life. You always wonder what happened to them and what would have happened if there were to stay in your life. What would you do if you had the opportunity to have them in your life again? Do you think you would rekindle old feelings or would you have moved on by then? I really enjoyed this debut book by Whitney Grandison. I hear she has been writing quite a bit on Wattpad, so I may have to jump over there and check some more of her writing out. I hope this is a first of many books I get to read of hers.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Tori

    Tyson Trice, you deserve happiness and a love more consuming than the deepest ocean ❤ Review to come. EDIT to include review - Sept 21, 2019 It was eminent. It stood against time. The love I felt for Queen was the closest I would ever feel for another person next to my mother. Looking into Queen's dark eyes, I felt peace and calm. I had found my kingdom. I was home. CW: murder, domestic violence/abuse, child abuse, classism, racial stereotyping Wow. It's been a while since I read a teen romance Tyson Trice, you deserve happiness and a love more consuming than the deepest ocean ❤️ Review to come. EDIT to include review - Sept 21, 2019 It was eminent. It stood against time. The love I felt for Queen was the closest I would ever feel for another person next to my mother. Looking into Queen's dark eyes, I felt peace and calm. I had found my kingdom. I was home. CW: murder, domestic violence/abuse, child abuse, classism, racial stereotyping Wow. It's been a while since I read a teen romance that connected with me and touched me on such a deeply emotional level. I not only felt the love the leading characters, Tyson (aka Trice) and Nandy felt for one another, but I felt rooted in their core selves. A Love Hate Thing follows the story of Tyson Trice, a 17 year-old black teen from Lindenwood, California (often stereotypically viewed by outsiders as "the hood"). Tyson is sent to live with the family of his childhood friend, Nandy Smith, after surviving a shooting. Nandy, also 17, is a black teen from Pacific Hills, California (a suburb like Bel-Air or Beverly Hills aka where rich folk live). I grew to love Nandy's character. Although she was extremely classist toward Tyson in the beginning, as the story progressed you see where her actions stemmed from. She was rich and spoiled but was often described by other characters as kind, friendly and welcoming (she reminded me of a more clever version of Hilary Banks from Fresh Prince of Bel-Air or Whitley from A Different World ). These traits become more visible to the reader as her character grows throughout the novel. I loved that Nandy was described as dark-skinned with dark eyes and was often regarded as the "most beautiful" and "popular girl" in Pacific Hills. While beauty and popularity are obviously not character traits, it's so rare that a black girl (and a dark-skinned black girl at that) is described in such a way. Nandy also had a pretty diverse and amazing group of friends. The girl power and female empowerment among her friends was so strong and it felt like they were my own group of friends! I absolutely LOVED Tyson. There's one description of him from Nandy that really resonated with me and summed him up perfectly: "His strength and gentleness were two contrasts that made me admire him to my core". Tyson was, indeed, strength and gentleness wrapped into one. He didn't always recognize his true strength but instead masked his deeply ingrained grief with indifference and a hard exterior. Tyson was a beautifully crafted character - he was incredibly intelligent, honest, respectful and loyal. I loved the author for writing Tyson as basically the opposite of every stereotype associated with the black man. He wasn't a "baller", a "gangsta" or a "thug" - he was a survivor. Nandy and Tyson both struggled with their vulnerabilities and letting their guard down with each other (and even themselves) and it was beautiful to watch those walls crumble as the book progressed. Nandy became humbled and a pillar (but not a savior) for Tyson and Tyson became more open with his feelings, emotions, and grief. The element of friendship was also strong throughout this novel. Nandy's relationship with her friends was honest and un-sugarcoated, albeit strong and understanding. There was a part where Nandy and her friend, Shayne, were on the outs but I admired the way they were able to resolve the issue and still stuck by one another. Nandy tried to get Tyson to be a part of her "in" crowd in Pacific Hills, but Tyson marched to the beat of his own drum and befriended the less "cool" guy, Kyle, and the "trouble-maker", Travis. The growth among these characters and their friendships (especially with Tyson and his friends) was incredibly strong and heartwarming to witness. We also see the element and hard lesson of letting go of old friendships and loyalties in order for one's self to grow and become a better person. From start to finish, I found myself extremely connected to this novel. From the language throughout, Nandy and Tyson's relationship with one another and their personal growth, to the mention of music sprinkled throughout - I almost felt like I knew the author (I don't lol), through her characters and writing. Nandy and Tyson's story (especially Tyson's) is one that I'm so honoured to have had the privilege of reading and will stay in my heart for a long time <3. Thank you, Whitney D. Grandison (wheadee), for writing a story about our people with so much heart and growth and including our rich history - I very much look forward to your future works! Thanks to NetGalley and Harlequin TEEN for this ARC in exchange for an honest review.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Hristina

    Read my spoiler-free review and an exclusive excerpt on my blog, illbefinealone reads. This was an exceptionally enjoyable read for me. I really liked the characters. Trice was so perfectly developed and brought to the page. Nandy seemed to be set as an opposite to Trice, and I really liked their interactions. A lot in this book was well executed. I really enjoyed the dynamics between the characters, as well as the writing. The plot was okay, but the connection I felt to the characters allowed me Read my spoiler-free review and an exclusive excerpt on my blog, illbefinealone reads. This was an exceptionally enjoyable read for me. I really liked the characters. Trice was so perfectly developed and brought to the page. Nandy seemed to be set as an opposite to Trice, and I really liked their interactions. A lot in this book was well executed. I really enjoyed the dynamics between the characters, as well as the writing. The plot was okay, but the connection I felt to the characters allowed me to keep reading. I have to note though that the pacing didn’t work for me, it felt a bit inconsistent. However, I liked the story, and I really wanted to see how it would turn out in the end. *Copy received through NetGalley *Rating: 4/5 stars

  15. 5 out of 5

    ♛primadonna♛

    My emotions are all over the place. First read of 2020 and it's a 5 star read that's gonna be hard to top in the YA/Romance department.! THIS is what I call a NOVEL.! A Love Hate Thing reads like a movie. I could see it all in my head. Nandy and Tyson. just. ugh. Love. It's not love at first site. It's a slow burn. It's hate to love. And I know that's so many people's favorite thing, but it's never been mines. But if more hate-to-love stories are done like this?! I'm all in. A beautiful, tragic, My emotions are all over the place. First read of 2020 and it's a 5 star read that's gonna be hard to top in the YA/Romance department.! THIS is what I call a NOVEL.! A Love Hate Thing reads like a movie. I could see it all in my head. Nandy and Tyson. just. ugh. Love. It's not love at first site. It's a slow burn. It's hate to love. And I know that's so many people's favorite thing, but it's never been mines. But if more hate-to-love stories are done like this?! I'm all in. A beautiful, tragic, emotional love story that tugged at my heart strings and totally Blew Me AWAY.! I was shocked, blown away, laughing, in tears, just all over the place.! Everytime I put it down I was drawn right back in because I just had to know what happens next?! (I Know it's a Really good book when I start telling people around me about it and I was shouting about A Love Hate Thing from the rooftops nearly.!) Every character was fleshed out. Even the side characters got complete stories and personalities. And I just loved so many characters in the end. I need More.! I need this to be a movie that I can watch over and over again and again.! Yes to diversity.! Yes to being honest and real about teen's sex lives.! As I said before, Yes to fleshing out All the characters.! Yes to Tyson's entire life story.! Yes to Travis being so friggin hilarious and awesome (he's my favorite.!) Yes to so many inspirational quotes throughout.! Yes to two POV's.! And Yes to having a playlist in the back that I'm gonna keep on repeat for awhile especially whenever I think back to Trandy. My ARC copy of the book was provided by the publisher and the author through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Sharonda Isadora

    This book is a terribly, stereotypical written book. And that is sad considering that there are two black teenagers as the main protagonists in this story. Tyson Trice was written as the stereotypical hood boy who loses everything and is moved into an affluent white space even though the family he now lives with is black. Tired plot. Nandy, sigh. I didnt like this girl. Spoiled rotten judgmental heffa. She reminded me of that black girl that was on Doctor Phil Im not like the rest of those This book is a terribly, stereotypical written book. And that is sad considering that there are two black teenagers as the main protagonists in this story. Tyson Trice was written as the stereotypical “hood” boy who loses “everything” and is moved into an affluent white space even though the family he now lives with is black. Tired plot. Nandy, sigh. I didn’t like this girl. Spoiled rotten judgmental heffa. She reminded me of that black girl that was on Doctor Phil “Im not like the rest of those negroes”....just ugh. Didn’t like Tyson from jump but somehow he was supposed to love her so easily because she was the it black girl. Tired plot. I thought by accepting this book for review, I was finally going to get a happy sensible story with black teens. I got trash. It is 2019 people, lets not do this to our children. They deserve better. I wouldn’t recommend this book to anyone...at all.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Whitney

    3.5 rounded up! A Love Hate Thing tells the story of a boy and girl, both friends at a young age, but 10 years removed from one another and on completely different paths. Nandy has grown up privileged and her life is filled with cotillions and popularity. Trice on the other hand has grown up in Lindenwood, a rough and tough urban city with a bad reputation. As far as Nandy is concerned, everyone from Lindenwood is a hardened criminal and thug who can't be trusted. This means that she is both 3.5 rounded up! A Love Hate Thing tells the story of a boy and girl, both friends at a young age, but 10 years removed from one another and on completely different paths. Nandy has grown up privileged and her life is filled with cotillions and popularity. Trice on the other hand has grown up in Lindenwood, a rough and tough urban city with a bad reputation. As far as Nandy is concerned, everyone from Lindenwood is a hardened criminal and thug who can't be trusted. This means that she is both upset and confused when her parents tell her that Trice will be moving in with them permanently. She has no clue why he's here, but she knows it's going to ruin her entire summer. She's not completely wrong. While her summer isn't ruined, Trice arriving causes a definite shake up in her summer and her life. She's faced with the boy who she hasn't seen since she was 7 and he's different that she remembered, just like she's different for him as well. He remembers a sweet bossy girl who loved to have fun, but now she's just a stuck up princess. She remembers a sweet boy who followed her around, but now he's full of hurt and anger that she doesn't understand. It won't be easy for them, but who said love or hate was ever easy right? Overall thoughts on this is that it was a great story. Whitney Grandison touched on love, hate, family and self applied pressures, grief, abuse, and so many other things with this one book. The best part of this story for me wasn't the love interest, but the story of grief and healing. I'll be honest and say that I found Nandy's character pretty much insufferable. She was needy, selfish, irritating, and completely naive. That's not to say that she's the first teenage girl in the YA world to be that way and certainly there are girls that reflect that in real life, but it was really hard for me to find redeeming qualities in her. I understand that things are tough and she's been sheltered so she has a lot to learn, but I found her getting on my nerves more than not. Her boyfriend Chad was equally insufferable. I think my biggest issue with the Chad Nandy dynamic is that Chad is made to seem redeemable because Nandy THINKS he is, when in fact he's a complete douchebag. Nandy refuses to see it and even when Chad does obvious bone head things, she may call it out but still writes it off just as how he is. I know the story isn't about Chad, so I'll let it go, but....yeah no he's a jerk and an asshole. Trice's story was an interesting one and it drives the entire plot. For most of the time he's stuck between making this new life in the Hills and being drawn back to his old life in Lindenwood. He struggles with the grief of losing two parents to one incident, making it out of that incident alive, trying to overcome some bad choices and abuse. For most of the story he fights his new life because he doesn't think that he deserves it. It's hard to start fresh when everything you know is gone and your inner voice is telling you that it's unfair that you made it out and others didn't. In the meantime, he has Nandy making his life very complicated. He's scared to let anyone in, but she seems to be the person who may just break down his walls. Like I said, I loved how this book approached grief and getting a second chance at life more than I loved it for the romance piece, but it was great to see two black teenage characters in a book like this one. While the romance just didn't do it for me, Trice and his character development did and that's definitely a story that I can get behind.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Bridget

    Whitney D. Grandison writes very enjoyably about friendship and love in this coming of age story. After recovering from being shot, seventeen-year-old Tyson Trice finds himself living with the well-off Smith family Maxine (Max) and Parker their daughter, Nandy and adopted Thai son, Jordy. Having spent most of his life, so far, surviving the rough streets of Lindenwood, Trice, as he likes to be known, doesnt care about anyone or anything. Meanwhile privileged Nandy has spent most of her young Whitney D. Grandison writes very enjoyably about friendship and love in this coming of age story. After recovering from being shot, seventeen-year-old Tyson Trice finds himself living with the well-off Smith family – Maxine (Max) and Parker their daughter, Nandy and adopted Thai son, Jordy. Having spent most of his life, so far, surviving the rough streets of Lindenwood, Trice, as he likes to be known, doesn’t care about anyone or anything. Meanwhile privileged Nandy has spent most of her young life concerned about her image and status, in her hometown of the Pacific Hills, California. Having just discovered that her parents are bringing a juvenile delinquent into the family home, Nandy fears for her summer holiday plans, as well as her well-cultivated, golden girl reputation. With the two of them living under the same roof, will the house be big enough for all their hate and love? A Love Hate Thing is told from the alternative viewpoints of Nandy and Trice, an approach that generally works very well for me in this type of story. I anticipated having some problems identifying with both of the main characters, not being a part of the intended audience or target group, although I was surprised to find that this wasn’t the case. It was fascinating to learn about Trice and Nandy’s former close friendship when they were both aged nine. Both Nandy and Trice face real prejudices as they get to know each other again. I found that protagonist Trice’s viewpoints in particular, were a revelation both in the trauma of his past and the way he believes himself to be undeserving of better things. Whitney D. Grandison’s portrayal of loyal and intelligent Trice being catapulted into Nandy’s world of the über-rich is engrossing and poignant, especially as image and conventionality in Pacific Hills are everything. Trice’s strength and gentleness is arresting as is the need to hide his ingrained grief with impassiveness and a hard exterior. I gradually grew to enjoy the character of Nandy. Although she displays class prejudice towards Trice in the beginning, I understood where her opinions stemmed from. Her friendliness, kindness, and welcoming nature gradually shone through. I really relished reading about Nandy’s diverse and congenial group of friends which was a very strong element of the novel for me. Nandy and Trice each struggled with their vulnerabilities and it was interesting to watch them let down their guards as the story progressed. A Love Hate Thing is a gritty character driven story about the potential for change. It is about love, acceptance, friendship, loyalty, trust, and second chances. It also takes a good look at the problems society has with race and social status. From the first chapter till the last, I found myself connecting with this compelling story. From Nandy and Trice’s personal development to their relationship with one another, I felt as though I knew them personally. Read A Love Hate Thing if you are partial to a good coming-of-age story full to the brim with interesting characters, strong on bittersweet and sugarcoated friendships and plenty of angst. Thanks to NetGalley, Harlequin-Inkyard Press and the author, Whitney D. Grandison for the complimentary copy. This is my honest and totally voluntary review.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Glorimar Irizarry

    Reviewed for a Book Nerd, a Bookseller, and a Bibliophile ARC received through Netgally. SO Whitney D. Grandison just gained a new fan, I am all about Tyson Trice and Nandy Smith! This was such a great story of a young man rebuilding himself after suffering such tragic events. In the beginning of this book Nandy annoyed the hell out of me and my heart broke for Tyson, but this is what had me hooked and I needed to know why was Nandy so mean to Tyson and what had Tyson gone through that he Reviewed for a Book Nerd, a Bookseller, and a Bibliophile ARC received through Netgally. SO Whitney D. Grandison just gained a new fan, I am all about Tyson Trice and Nandy Smith! This was such a great story of a young man rebuilding himself after suffering such tragic events. In the beginning of this book Nandy annoyed the hell out of me and my heart broke for Tyson, but this is what had me hooked and I needed to know why was Nandy so mean to Tyson and what had Tyson gone through that he literally didn't care if he lived or died. What I appreciated about the book that it was a love story about a young black man and a young black women from two different worlds and I think we definitely need more love stories like these in our book shelves. I loved that their friends were multicultural, I loved that Whitney showed that you can't judge a book by it's cover, and I especially loved how she highlights the struggles that young men go through to express their emotions because it's considered a sign of weakness. I am not sure if Whitney will have "A Love Hate Thing" be a standalone but I would appreciate her writing about the whole Pacific Hills crew. I need to know if Travis Catalano ever finds love!!! I need to know if Shayne ever gives Kyle a chance!! I am here for all of this YA drama so Whitney what's good???!!!! Congrats on this Debut and though some reviewers may not get your references or your genre of romance just know that this reviewer does understand and can relate to everything you depicted in this story.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Lacey

    I received this book as a part of the Winter 2020 Harlequin Trade Publishing Blog Tour for Inkyard Press! Thank you to Kelly deVos, Harlequin Books, Inkyard Press & NetGalley for a copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review. There was a lot about A Love Hate Thing that I enjoyed and a lot that I was just so/so about. To start, Trice was a character that I was very much able to feel emotions for. His story was extreme and tough to hear, and I'm glad that I was able to see his I received this book as a part of the Winter 2020 Harlequin Trade Publishing Blog Tour for Inkyard Press! Thank you to Kelly deVos, Harlequin Books, Inkyard Press & NetGalley for a copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review. There was a lot about A Love Hate Thing that I enjoyed and a lot that I was just so/so about. To start, Trice was a character that I was very much able to feel emotions for. His story was extreme and tough to hear, and I'm glad that I was able to see his development throughout the story. On the so/so side, I could not get into Nandy's character at all. Her development wasn't enough for me and even by  the end of the book, I still could not see her as a character I would like to know. By the time we started to see any type of interest between Nandy and Trice, I was over her and her attitude, so I couldn't get into that aspect in the slightest. I think that the story was definitely believable and could've been authentic. The differences between Nandy's world in Pacific Hills and Trice's world in Lindenwood were shown perfectly and I really could understand where they came from in both zip codes. I think Whitney Grandison did a fantastic job blending the people and both cities to show what was good and bad about both.  Lastly, I think that the writing could've been a little better. I understand that this is a debut novel, and I'm not knocking it for that. I'm just saying that in this book, there should've been a little bit more of an editing process or something like that. There was a point where it skipped a month I believe and I feel like there was this big chunk of storyline that I missed because of that.  Overall, I think that there were things that  A Love Hate Thing that were good, but things that could've been a lot better. I think that this was a good debut novel to start with and it'll only get better from here! 

  21. 5 out of 5

    Zan

    I tried. characters were unbearably unlikeable and laughingly stereotypical nope nope nope nope

  22. 4 out of 5

    USOM

    (Disclaimer: I received this book from Netgalley. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.) A Love Hate Thing is a story about friendship and love. Both Tyson and Nandy have their expectations of how they think the other will be. A Love Hate Thing is about our ability to see beyond the image in front of us. To fight our prejudices and memories. I enjoyed the dual POV format of A Love Hate Thing. It allows the reader to witness events from each character's point of view, (Disclaimer: I received this book from Netgalley. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.) A Love Hate Thing is a story about friendship and love. Both Tyson and Nandy have their expectations of how they think the other will be. A Love Hate Thing is about our ability to see beyond the image in front of us. To fight our prejudices and memories. I enjoyed the dual POV format of A Love Hate Thing. It allows the reader to witness events from each character's point of view, their inner thoughts, the stillness under the surface. Tyson's POV broke my heart, the way he doesn't think he deserve nice things, the trauma of his past. Used to nights with gunshots, coming into Nandy's world of the uber rich is an adjustment to say the least. Not to mention that in Pacific Hills image and conventions are everything. A Love Hate Thing is about Tyson seeing both the good, the bad, and the potential for change within these gilded streets. A Love Hate Thing is a character driven story about people who never leave our hearts. Our battles with the past, and our challenges in accepting the future. A Love Hate Thing also features a m/m side relationship and an adopted side character which I was pleased to read. Through this perspective, we are asked about what connection we have to our home, to where we were born. How much do we carry over? full review: https://utopia-state-of-mind.com/blog...

  23. 5 out of 5

    Kari

    I only got a few chapters into this book before I stopped reading. The main character, Nandy, was over-the-top spoiled. I also thought it was kind of weird that the reason Trice was moved to a richer neighborhood was to get away from drugs and violence. Yet, one of the first places we see Nandy is at a party with her rich friends were they are all UNDERAGE and drugs and alcohol are in ample supply. Nope, not for me.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Lane

    DNF at 100 pages. Pretty upset about this one. It reads like bad THE OC fan fiction that refused to catch up to 2020. I dont like anyone in this book except the little brother. Just very cringey overall. DNF at 100 pages. Pretty upset about this one. It reads like bad THE OC fan fiction that refused to catch up to 2020. I don’t like anyone in this book except the little brother. Just very cringey overall.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Stephanie Brown

    Great debut by Whitney D. Grandison. I Enjoyed this YA love story. It has fun moments but it also has deeper, darker moments. There should definitely be some Trigger warnings due to family violence, physical abuse, gun violence. Nandy has her summer planned when her parents let her know that they are taking in a 17 year old from a city with a bad reputation. She doesnt want him to spoil her plans and she is afraid of him being a thug. She doesnt realize that it an old family friend that she knew Great debut by Whitney D. Grandison. I Enjoyed this YA love story. It has fun moments but it also has deeper, darker moments. There should definitely be some Trigger warnings due to family violence, physical abuse, gun violence. Nandy has her summer planned when her parents let her know that they are taking in a 17 year old from a city with a bad reputation. She doesn’t want him to spoil her plans and she is afraid of him being a thug. She doesn’t realize that it an old family friend that she knew when they were both 7. Thrice is not happy about moving in with the Smith family. He just need somewhere to Stay til he turns 18. Then he plans to Be out on his own. He is in a bad way and doesn’t want to be around anyone or anything. Nandy is rude to him immediately and runs off to be with her friends and her boyfriend. Thrice just wants To be alone in his room. He doesn’t want to be out. Nandy eventually admits that she was upset with Thrice for abandoning her 10 years ago. This book follows their love/hate relationship and Thrice’s adjustment time his new home. I would definitely recommend this book to others. I think some Of the transitions from one scene to another aren’t as smooth as they could but that’s my only real issue. I would still recommend this book.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Genesis Sheli (Whispering Chapters)

    This debut was a wonderful roller-coaster! As most of you know, enemies-to-lovers is my favorite trope in the world, so it's no surprise I wanted to snatch this one up. I didn't look the same. I didn't act the same. I wasn't the same. And I didn't care. Nandy Smith is ready for her summer to begin. Nothing could ruin her summer, until her parents bring in a boy from Lindenwood, the bad and shady part of town. Once she finds out he's the same boy who would spend summers with her, she feels angry This debut was a wonderful roller-coaster! As most of you know, enemies-to-lovers is my favorite trope in the world, so it's no surprise I wanted to snatch this one up. I didn't look the same. I didn't act the same. I wasn't the same. And I didn't care. Nandy Smith is ready for her summer to begin. Nothing could ruin her summer, until her parents bring in a boy from Lindenwood, the bad and shady part of town. Once she finds out he's the same boy who would spend summers with her, she feels angry at him for abandoning her. Tyson Trice has lost everything dear to him. He doesn't have a choice but to go with the family his grandfather used to work for during the summer at Pacific Hills. He can't believe he's back at Nandy's house and looking at her after ten years. She's still as bossy and with even more spitfire than before. Right from the start, I was in love with Trice. He's so much more than were he came from. What made his character shine to me from the beginning was when he schooled Nandy on her African roots and how she should really learn about her history, including her name. Something he said spoke volumes to me: "You can meet a Mexican or Asian who'll speak English and know all of our pop culture, but still have their hands in their roots. Us, we've been here for centuries and little by little our touch with Africa has been lost." Honestly. if it hadn't been for Trice, I would have stopped reading this book very early on, mostly because of Nandy. I'm glad her character slowly evolved during the story, but at the beginning, I couldn't stand her. She was so stuck up, a brat, and always judging Trice for everything. A lot of the choices Nandy made got on my nerves. But when I read the acknowledgments and found out the inspiration for this world was The O.C., it made a whole lot of sense. If I were keeping score on the bizarre, twisted teen drama I'd fallen into, I had to take a guess and say I'd just met the extra-bitchy best friend to Nandy's main mean-girl character. In a way, this story was filled with a lot of stereotypes, but at the same time, it wasn't. I loved seeing the diversity of characters and all the representations. Each one brought their own uniqueness to the story. Aside from Trice, the friendships shone brighter than the sun in this novel. My favorites have to be Travis and Shayne. These two were amazing towards Trice. They didn't judge at all and were there for Trice 100%. The loyalty Trice's new friends had was a breath of fresh air in this world where only your image and money matters. We were all different with different hopes and dreams, but at the end of the day, we had each other's backs and tried to relate and understand each other. Nothing beat friendships like this. Family was another major factor in this novel that I believe was a wonderful addition. Nandy's family was simply amazing. Maxine and Parker Smith were parents who truly cared for everyone. I especially loved how Maxine didn't get wrapped up in the Pacific Hills drama with other women. Instead, she chose to work and also provide for her family, which got her some backlash from the other women. My mother was the anomaly, choosing to work and get her hands dirty rather than sitting back and playing some cliché role while my father worked. My mother inspired me. Overall, A Love Hate Thing was an inspiring debut, filled with friendships, family, a dose of reality, and acceptance. -- Follow Me Blog ❃ Instagram ❃ Twitter ❃ Bloglovin ❃ Goodreads ❃ Pinterest

  27. 4 out of 5

    Leelynn (Sometimes Leelynn Reads) ❤

    Disclaimer: I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you to Harlequin Trade Publishing, Netgalley, and Inkyard Press for this free copy. All quotes in this review are taken from the Advanced Reader Copy and may change in final publication. Man. I was really hurt reading this one, yet again. I swear, does Inkyard Press specialize in writing some hard core YA contemporary books meant to break you down and make you see the tough side Disclaimer: I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you to Harlequin Trade Publishing, Netgalley, and Inkyard Press for this free copy. All quotes in this review are taken from the Advanced Reader Copy and may change in final publication. Man. I was really hurt reading this one, yet again. I swear, does Inkyard Press specialize in writing some hard core YA contemporary books meant to break you down and make you see the tough side of life? Because this is not the first book that has done that to me and it certainly won’t be the last if I see their pattern. That darn Inkyard Press! And I mean that with all the love possible. The first thing that really had me on edge about this book before I even started it was that our main guy Tyson recently got shot and was basically living in the streets in an unsafe environment. Why? Because I feel like that is such a norm these days for young black men, and I didn’t want to have to see that being portrayed in a “fiction” novel. But I mean, if I can’t handle what’s happening in real life – which I absolutely hate that this happens and I can’t do anything about it that will make a difference for everyone, which sucks – then can I even handle it in fiction? Should I complain about it? Which don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining about having a character with a real background that is in the real world, that isn’t a cookie cutter back story that we got a lot of times with contemporary novels back in the day, but I just want to see some stories without black men or women having to come from suffering into a life of happiness or love. Let them have happiness, let them have love, without having to fight from the very bottom to get it. And I get it. Tyson’s life is troubled, but HE himself is not trouble. I think that’s where I get upset with Nandy’s misconception about him in the beginning, when her parents take him in. Like, thank gosh Nandy’s family took Tyson in so he could be away from that kind of environment, but that doesn’t make him a bad person, or someone that’s full of trouble, and I’m kind of ashamed that that was the first impression before it was the first impression, if that makes sense. Sure, having another person in your house that you aren’t used to is going to mess up your flow because you already have a system, but that doesn’t make that person TROUBLE. Ugh I don’t know, that just hurt me because I could imagine my own brother being in Tyson’s situation if we grew up differently, and I wouldn’t want someone saying that he was trouble because of what he had to go through. Plus are your summer plans really more important than someone’s livelihood? Priorities, Nandy.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Heather

    **I received a copy of this via the publisher in exchange for an honest review** The last place seventeen year old Tyson Trice wants to spend his summer is in the wealthy community of Pacific Hills with a family he hasn't seen in ten years. Coming from the rough streets of Lindenwood, he knows he's in for nothing but stares and judgments, but after recovering from a gunshot wound and losing his family, Tyson doesn't really care about much. Especially not reconnecting with his childhood friend, **I received a copy of this via the publisher in exchange for an honest review** The last place seventeen year old Tyson Trice wants to spend his summer is in the wealthy community of Pacific Hills with a family he hasn't seen in ten years. Coming from the rough streets of Lindenwood, he knows he's in for nothing but stares and judgments, but after recovering from a gunshot wound and losing his family, Tyson doesn't really care about much. Especially not reconnecting with his childhood friend, Nandy Smith, whose family has taken him in. Golden girl Nandy has it all laid out for her: she has the perfect boyfriend, the perfect grades, the perfect friends, and the last thing she needs is a thug from the 'Wood ruining the reputation she's taken so long to build. The more time the two spend bickering the more the tension and underlying feelings they have for one another grows. As the pair start to rekindle their friendship, Tyson helps bring Nandy back out of her shell, and Nandy tries to show Tyson that holding onto his anger will do nothing but hurt him more in the end. As they try to navigate through their new way of life, the ever-present pull back to Lindenwood may prove too much for Tyson to resist. I was a huge fan of The OC back in high school/college and this gave me all the same vibes. There was all the needless drama and overreactions that you'd expect in an early '00s teen drama, as well as its predictability. While I did enjoy it, I was able to tell where the story was going before it got there, so that dropped it down a bit for me. I did really like Tyson and how complex he was. He goes through so much in this, and I love how he sought refuge in his writing. Nandy starts off being a bit of a spoiled brat, but eventually gains a whole new understanding and perspective of her world which was nice character growth. Their romance didn't blow me away, but it was cute. I also really liked the side characters, and would love to read a spin off about Shayne and Kyle. All in all, if you're craving a teen drama in your life, check this one out.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Ashley

    This book was sent to me in ebook form by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. As always with NetGalley, the cover and description are what really drew me to this book! This book wrecked me towards the end and I'm not sure I've fully recovered yet. It was definitely a rollercoaster and in some ways a little like Gossip Girl with all of the drama the teenagers get up to. (It's definitely an "unsupervised teens with money" type of book if you're a Bad on Paper podcast fan.) For a debut This book was sent to me in ebook form by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. As always with NetGalley, the cover and description are what really drew me to this book! This book wrecked me towards the end and I'm not sure I've fully recovered yet. It was definitely a rollercoaster and in some ways a little like Gossip Girl with all of the drama the teenagers get up to. (It's definitely an "unsupervised teens with money" type of book if you're a Bad on Paper podcast fan.) For a debut novel, Whitney definitely knocked this out of the park. The book is a dual POV between Tyson 'Trice" and Nandy and if you're not a fan of the 'haters to lovers' trope you might not like it. I definitely enjoyed this book though. The characters were entertaining and easy to love and I loved seeing Tyson and Nandy's relationship blossom as they opened up to one another and left their fears behind. I especially loved how the author tackled difficult topics such as religion, race, and how young black men deal with emotions. I also loved the friendships in this novel. There are A LOT of characters, but by the end of the book, I felt connected to each and every one of them. Tyson's story isn't an easy one, but I think the author did a wonderful job showing that at the end of the day family doesn't have to be blood-related, but can be multi-cultural. Last, but not least, this is a book I plan to personally buy when it releases, recommend to everyone I know, and I can't wait to read what this author publishes next. I'll also have to definitely have to check out the author's Wattpad for more gems like this one. :) P.S. Dear author, can you please write a book from the POV of Shayne and Kyle next? I really need to know how that whole thing goes. P.P.S. Travis is the real hero of this book. :)

  30. 5 out of 5

    Jacquie

    My Review What happens when the poor kid finds himself living the dream? When Tyson Trices father killed his mother, injured Trice, and turned the gun on himself, it rocked the foundation of Trices world. Suddenly he found himself staying with a family in an expensive subdivision at his dying grandfathers bequest. The Smiths are good people, but they cant possibly understand what it was like to grow up in an abusive household on the wrong side of the tracks. Trice tries to fit in, for the sake of My Review What happens when the poor kid finds himself living the dream? When Tyson Trice’s father killed his mother, injured Trice, and turned the gun on himself, it rocked the foundation of Trice’s world. Suddenly he found himself staying with a family in an expensive subdivision at his dying grandfather’s bequest. The Smiths are good people, but they can’t possibly understand what it was like to grow up in an abusive household on the wrong side of the tracks. Trice tries to fit in, for the sake of the daughter, Nandy, who he’d played with as a child, but when the past comes calling, he realises he’s been dreaming-there’s only one way out for a guy like him. Nandy remembers the kid their gardener used to bring with him, but Tyson has changed. He’s handsome, for one thing, but cynical and hard to reach now. She’s also worried he might reflect badly on her hard-won popularity- this was cotillion year, after all. But the bond they shared as children draws these two vastly different personalities together and creates issues neither could have foreseen. This is a coming of age story filled with interesting characters and plenty of angst (which I loved!). What didn’t ring true for me was Nandy. She’s supposedly a sweet, kind girl who does all kinds of charity work in the community, but she came off as a spoiled, rich girl worried more about her image than the real-life issues Trice faced. Other than that, this is an easy 4 lovely kisses read for me!

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