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Review: The Loose Ends List by Carrie Firestone

Blurb from Goodreads:
First loves. Last Wishes. Letting go. 

Seventeen-year-old Maddie O'Neill Levine lives a charmed life, and is primed to spend the perfect pre-college summer with her best friends and young-at-heart socialite grandmother (also Maddie's closest confidante), tying up high school loose ends. Maddie's plans change the instant Gram announces that she is terminally ill and has booked the family on a secret "death with dignity" cruise ship so that she can leave the world in her own unconventional way - and give the O'Neill clan an unforgettable summer of dreams-come-true in the process.

Soon, Maddie is on the trip of a lifetime with her over-the-top family. As they travel the globe, Maddie bonds with other passengers and falls for Enzo, who is processing his own grief. But despite the laughter, headiness of first love, and excitement of glamorous destinations, Maddie knows she is on the brink of losing Gram. She struggles to find the strength to say good-bye in a whirlwind summer shaped by love, loss, and the power of forgiveness.
My Review:
I didn't hate this and, actually, some parts of it were enjoyable but there were some glaring issues that I couldn't overcome.  I still love the premise of this and probably would have really liked this book had Maddie been anything but a selfish, intolerant, disgusting brat.  Her Gram was so freaking amazing and she had a loving family but the entire focus, which should have been on her Gram, was instead on her own wants and her obsession with Enzo, who is conveniently also on the cruise.  I don't know, it just seemed totally unnecessary to have a love interest in this book -- if your most loved person in the world was dying, would your whole focus be on your virginity?  I know we all deal with grief in different ways but I just found Maddie to be so selfish that it ruined the book for me.  The traveling was definitely awesome and  loved reading about places I've been and have yet to travel to but the traveling also just felt so freaking unrealistic even considering how wealthy Maddie's family was and how sick her Gram was. I also couldn't get over Maddie's repulsive and intolerant descriptions of other cultures -- she was so obnoxious and racist. I did have a few tears in my eyes at the end of this because it was sad but I still can't stand Maddie.

The Loose Ends List came out last week on June 7, 2016, and you can purchase HERE.
We talk for hours.  I tell him about my friends and Connecticut and the lake club summer I was supposed to have.  I talk about Gram and all the amazing things we've done over the years.  I show him constellations, because there are millions of them painting the sky above us.  I tell him how I wish I could be close with my brother like we were before he got weird and angry.


  1. I think Maddie would have gotten on my nerves as well. Sorry this didn't work for you.

  2. Well, crap. I've seen this around and was hopeful that it was good because the premise was so unique and on top of that it seemed to tackle grief in a good way. What a dissapointment! I'm sorry :( Kudos to you for managing to get through it.

  3. You don't have to convince me twice. I have no patience for spoiled, racists protagonists. UGH, this just sounds all wrong.

  4. Oh no. This is another bad one. Racism is a big no-go.

  5. Maddie sounds delightful :) No really I don't think I could stand an MC like that. I have hear mostly eh to negative on this one so I will be skipping. Great review!

  6. This is a new one to me, and that cover has a lot going on, there. I'm not sure this one is for me, but who knows?

  7. I guess Maddie gets worst. I'm glad I didn't continue with it, even though I'm interested in Gram and how her story went. But Maddie just ruined everything! And I agree on this book not needing a romance.

  8. Eww... that main character, Maddie, she does sound like an annoying brat. I would have been too busy focusing on her than focusing on what mattered, which was the OTHER characters and the PLOT. Too bad. :( I hope your next read is WAYYY better and doesn't make you glare at it too much.. :(

  9. Oh bummer! The premise has lots of potential to be an emotionally satisfying read. Nothing worse than a selfish character, especially in the face of what her grandma was going through. I think the romance would've worked if it was sweet and mutually supportive in their grief. Great honest review, Eva! This would definitely be a pass for me.

  10. Ahh, Maddie sounds like a delightful character. <--- Sarcasm. :D This will be an easy pass for me.

  11. selfish characters can totally ruin a story!!! Sorry to hear this one didn't work out.

  12. I absolutely loved this book haha I felt the same way about maddie in the beginning but I felt like she changed throughout! I can totally see how someone would be annoyed by her though. I just loved the locations in this book and it also was very emotional for me! :) great review though eva!

  13. Oh no! Sorry this book didn't work out for you! It sounded like a really cute read, but that's too bad the story ended up focusing more on the romance than the (potentially) great relationship between grandma and granddaughter, sigh. I think I'll hold on this for now.
    Thanks for the review, Eva!

  14. I also didn't feel so great about the romance. It was kind of weird how she was having a summer hookup when the sole purpose of that trip was to part with her grandma and learn to have fun with her family. I really hated the main character in the end but like I stated in my review, she kind of grows on you in the end.

    Ahh I love reading reviews on this book!

    Alex @ The Book's Buzz


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