The Things You Kiss Goodbye by Leslie Connor
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I'm actually torn in a lot of emotional pulls on this one.
First, this book deals with abusive relationships. Something you really dont think too much in a younger person's dating life. I was struggling with how Bettina was handling this with her boyfriend Brady - the one kid that changed so much through the years & who everyone looks up to.
& then I had a YES & then NO feeling when Bettina meets "Cowboy". I loved he was giving her courage & letting her be herself, but the age gap was sort of strange to me making me feel like this was not a relationship that should be happening.
& the relationship with her dad - a pure Greek father - had me frustrated & aggravated at how little he saw his daughter & treated her fairly compared to her sons. Their relationship bothered me. It almost made me think he was the example that she should over look abuse.
& then the end of the book? Again, torn between heart broken & numb, but the outlook of a new beginning.
See? All over the place.
But I will say, this book held my attention. I devoured it. That says something it of itself.
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Bettina Vasilis can hardly believe it when basketball star Brady Cullen asks her out, and she just about faints when her strict father actually approves of him.
But when school starts up again, Brady changes. What happened to the sweet boy she fell in love with? Then she meets a smoldering guy in his twenties, and this “cowboy” is everything Brady is not—gentle, caring, and interested in getting to know the real Bettina.
Bettina knows that breaking up with Brady would mean giving up her freedom—and that it would be inappropriate for anything to happen between her and Cowboy. Still, she can’t help that she longs for the scent of his auto shop whenever she’s anywhere else.
When tragedy strikes, Bettina must tell her family the truth—and kiss goodbye the things she thought she knew about herself and the men in her life.
Leslie Connor has written a lyrical, heartbreaking, and ultimately hopeful story about family, romance, and the immense power of love.