In August 2016, shortly before I began this blog, my long-distance boyfriend and I buddy read Dreamology by Lucy Keating. It was by far one of the cutest things I’d read in a long time, so you can imagine how excited I was when I saw that Literally was hitting the shelves. If I had to pick one, I think my
If I had to pick one, I think my favourite thing about Keating as a writer is her ability to have her books read like a contemporary, but still incorporate lots of fun fantastical and supernatural elements.
If I’m totally honest, when I started this book, I had an idea of what I thought it was about… and I was completely wrong. I thought I was reading a book about a real girl who had a boyfriend who had come to life off the page. However, I must have gotten the plots of Literally and Between the Lines muddled in my head because that’s just not right! It threw me a little at the start, but once I wrapped my head around the idea, I think I liked Keating’s concept even better.
Looking more closely at the nitty-gritty of the story, I have to make comment on the fact that this book includes a character called Lucy Keating. Although book-Lucy is also an author, the similarities really end there, and track a very different career trajectory than real’Lucy. Personally, I found this a bit confusing. I understand what Keating was trying to do, and that she was attempting to further bring the concept of the book to life, but personally (due to the differences between book-Lucy and real-Lucy) I ended up a little confused and a lot unnerved. If it were me, I probably would have made up a name for the fictional author, it would have been just as effective and much easier to grasp.
My views on the romance of this story are a little muddier. Firstly, I really didn’t get Will. He was just too perfect! I kept hoping that he’d steal a car or punch somebody or something – I never had any desire for Annabelle to pick him… ever. There was no contest in my eyes!
However, despite all that negativity, I did really like the actual mechanics of Annabelle’s two different relationships. It was cute, and it was innocent and it warmed my cold, stony heart. In fact, my chest got all a flutter a few times throughout the story.
On a separate note, unusually, I’m willing to pardon the poor family dynamic in this story for a rather unconventional reason. Since the story of Annabelle’s life was supposed to be a piece of generic, YA chick-lit, I quite liked the fact that Keating highlighted the broken-home trope. It’s nice to know I’m not the only one who sees it, and so I’m willing to let it go uncriticised.
Overall, I gave this book 4/5 stars – pretty good if I do say so myself! I really enjoyed this read and flew through it super quickly. Both of Keating’s books come with Miss Abigail’s stamp of approval, especially when read on a beach with an iced drink. They’re cute, they’re short and they’re just a little bit magical.
If you’ve read either of Lucy Keating’s books I’d love to hear from you in the comments below. What did you think? Were you a fan, or was it all just a bit wishy-washy? Let me know!