REVIEW: Always Kiss Me Goodnight by Megan Gaudino

SYNOPSIS: Sophia Destino is supposed to die.

All seventeen-year-old Sophia wants is to coast through her junior year. But with her parents obsessed with her Olympic-swimming-hopeful brother, a psychic best friend with a penchant for reading tarot cards, and prophetic dreams that predict her death-that won't be easy. As her nightmares begin to come true, Sophia finds herself dodging death and longing for the time when getting over her ex-boyfriend was her biggest problem. Until she meets Leo Knight. The mysterious stranger seems determined to keep her alive-and steal her heart. But Leo has a secret that is about to change everything and Sophia is about to learn that sometimes...your number is up.

SERIES: Guardian Kiss #1

GENRE: Romance, Fantasy, Young Adult

RATING: ★★★☆☆ / 3 easy to read stars.

REVIEW: This one was a very quick read and an incredibly easy read. I always like to make note of this because sometimes you're looking for that perfect book to throw in your beach bag for an easy day or when you know that you don't want to be tied up in a book for days on end because real life beckons tomorrow for one reason or another. In those cases Always Kiss Me Goodnight (even though this is just the first in a series) is perfect for a fast read.

What this also means is that it isn't a very in-depth story. Sure there are some crazy strange things going on, but it still feels very on-the-surface. It's also an insta-love story, not my favorite, but for a short and easy read, it's a plot device that's to be expected. However, most author's with this style of storyline usually have me rolling my eyes at every other word, but my eyes stayed firmly on the page with this book! There is definitely an ease to Gaudino's writing that keeps you invested.

Okay, on to Sophia. She kinda sorta almost keeps dying. I loved this element of the plot and only wish there had been more with a greater escalation of death defying acts. When we're introduced to Leo it's incredibly fast and dialogue whips back and forth quickly. A lot of things are said and assumptions are made and yet we don't really get anywhere. It was a little bit frustrating. Some things are eventually explained, but I don't want to add any spoilers, and there is still a lot left to be explored in the next book.

Sophia's other relationships gave me a little bit of whiplash. The girl couldn't seem to make up her mind about anyone or anything. However, once again with the style of writing, I wasn't overly bothered by any of it. I just breezed on through the book. The unfortunate side-effect of this was that, while it was a mildly enjoyable way to spend a day reading, I also didn't have any bigger connection to the book. It didn't anger me but it also didn't excite me.

While this book focused heavily on the romance and the relationships/friendships with other characters, there wasn't a lot of the fantasy element that was looming just out of sight. It started and stopped several times but there is still a lot left to be revealed.

It's also important to note that the book finished strong and on a cliff-hanger. You know the horror movies when the girl goes up the stairs to check out the strange noise and you're shouting at the TV, "NO! Don't go up there!"? Well that's the sort of moment that leads into the ending. Definitely a compelling ending. I'll be picking up book 2 soon to find out what happens next, but probably on another day when I'm looking for an easy and quick read.

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