Chasing Fireflies is a debut YA novel by Chloe Fowler scheduled to hit shelves October 25th. This book follows the story of high school seniors Rainey and Liam. I really enjoyed it and gave this one 3.5 stars (rounded to 4 on Goodreads).
Rainey Collins has heard this a thousand times, but when it comes to her sister Maverick, who was born with a serious heart defect, the reason has always been a mystery. The idea of a future without her sister terrifies Rainey so much, she hasn’t even thought about life after high school. However, on the first day of senior year, Rainey winds up sitting next to Liam Hayes, a rumored delinquent with a dangerously dysfunctional family. Convinced that people shouldn’t be judged by their relatives, or by the price tag on their clothes, Rainey slowly begins to breach Liam’s defenses, and finds herself wondering if some dreams—and some futures—are worth the risk.
I enjoyed this one a lot. I went back and forth between 3 and 4 stars, so probably more like 3.5 stars.
This book started out seeming like just another heart wrenching YA. I thought I knew where the plot would go but it managed to surprise me. It wasn’t the typical insta-love, the characters did follow some familiar patterns but still seemed unique and the ending definitely surprised me.
I thought the characters in this were really good and ultimately what made me round up. Maverick was such a spitfire, I wished she’d played a larger part. Rainey seemed like an average high school student but caring and very important to those around her. Liam’s story was interesting and I liked that he was portrayed as not being a bully or getting in trouble. The smart guy from the wrong side of town is usually a guy getting in trouble and needs a girl to realize his potential and this thankfully wasn’t that same old storyline.
There’s a lot of plot to this book as well. A lot of things happen and it kept my attention throughout. Although the romance is throughout, there’s more going on than just that, I strangely could have used a few more scenes between Rainey and Liam to really sell their relationship because there was so much jammed into this 300 page book.
Overall, I really enjoyed this one. It did have scenes and characters that reminded my of the typical YA tragic romances (Walk to Remember, Six Feet Apart, etc.) but it has its own voice and characters and writing to stand among those without getting lost.
** I received a free eARC of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. **