It Only Happens in the Movies Paperback – 5 Oct 2017
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Holly Bourne is something special, she's got it. --Patrick Ness
Sharp, honest and laugh-out-loud funny, Holly Bourne's radiant novel offers a welcome twist on a regular YA romance. --iBooks - Books We're Loving This Month for October 2017
There is more clear-sighted feminist analysis (and many more belly laughs) in Holly Bourne's latest young adult novel... This is Bourne at her outrageous, courageous, necessary best. --The Guardian
If you're looking for a YA contemporary novel that's a little bit different, and includes family, messed up relationships and feminist rants that you might not initially expect - this one's for you! --Lots of Livres
Funny, poignant and heartbreakingly real, It Only Happens in the Movies is a partly about falling in love and getting swept away despite yourself, and brilliantly captures what this can feel like. --The Telegraph
About the Author
Holly Bourne is an author and a journalist. Holly's first two books, Soulmates and The Manifesto on How to be Interesting, have been critically acclaimed and translated into six languages. The first book in the Spinster Club series, Am I Normal Yet?, was chosen as a World Book Night book for 2016 and was shortlisted for the YA Book Prize. The Spinster Club series has also inspired the formation of Spinster Clubs across the UK and Ireland. Before becoming a full-time author, Holly was editor of TheSite.org - a charity-run advice and information website for young people.
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If you have ever read any book by Holly Bourne before you will know that her writing style is wickedly funny and super easy to read. I get so lost in her novels and they take me back to my teenage years. Her writing is super truthful at times that it hurts, she talks about sexual assault, the lack of sapphic relationships in movies, racism etc. At one point one of the characters talk about not being able to orgasm through penetration which I think is just something that is super important to include off the cuff in YA. Like it's just spoken about casually but having that being in books lets young girls know that it's a thing and it's ok to be that way.
I read this so quickly that I didn't really take any notes and I kind of hate myself for it. I remember the mother in this story was a bit of a mess, but you can 100% see where it comes from and how poor her mental health is.
I'm not going to talk spoilers but I would love someone who has read this to let me know because I want to talk about the ending and how satisfying it was for me.
My only thing with this book was because he was called Harry I could not stop imagining Harry Styles, who is an absolute sweetheart and not a bad boy and it was a bit disconcerting every time I read the name.
It’s really nice to see an increasing number of YA books featuring sex in general as well as safe sex. It showed just how awkward a first time with a new person can be, along with the importance of learning about your partner. It felt like real characters taking an important step forward in their relationship.
I did struggle to get into this story but persevered and found that it picked up a lot in the last third. I actually found Audrey’s mum and her character arc more than anything else in the story. What happens to her throughout the plot is heart-breaking, brutal and raw. I felt so much for her that I wished I could climb into the book and give her a hug.
I got the point of what Holly Bourne was trying to achieve with this book but I found that the actual story itself fell a little short. I think a lot of that is down to the fact that I’m really not a fan of “girl is warned off bad boy but falls for him anyway” stories.
However, once again Holly Bourne takes a stab at one of the many ridiculous things about the world and really gets you thinking.
I have never related to a character as much as I relate to Audrey Winters. I could completely understand everything the Audrey did through the book. All of her actions made sense to me because this book shows an accurate depiction of love, rather than the one we’re shown in dramatic romantic films. Audrey isn’t a straight forward character and this isn’t a straight forward romance novel. Audrey struggles with romance, she’s never too sure if her feelings and can’t easily read signs of romance.
Audrey’s romantic interest Harry is much the same, he’s far from perfect. Harry is your typical boy, the one you know in real life who’s a bit of a flirt and a player. Harry isn’t Mr Darcey, he’s more rough around the edges but that doesn’t mean you don’t fall for him. He’s got that charm about him, I think all girls have come across a Harry at some point.
I found myself laughing, crying and cringing for the characters throughout the book. Having worked at a cinema for more than 2 years I found all of the scenes in the cinema hilariously accurate. I can relate to Audrey’s pain of having to deliver a hot dog to an I thankful customer in a screen and the dread of Marvel movie opening weekend.
In the end I’m not really sure how I felt. By that I mean when I finished the book I felt a bit of an odd mixture of emotions. I love that this book breaks the stereotypes of traditional romances and I applaud every decision that was made my Audrey in the book, even the final one, but that doesn’t mean that longing for things to have turned out differently.
This book is an absolute must read for all young adults. Bourne tackles themes in the book head on a doesn’t skirt around any of the topics she wants to talk about wether that’s the realities of sex or periods. This book will challenge your opinion of love and romance and will have you questioning your enjoyment of any romantic films in the past.
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I have to say I was mega obsessed with this book!Read more