Books · Reviews

Wesley James Ruined My Life – Book Review (Spoiler-Free)

wesley-james

Hey, everyone! πŸ™‚ I’m back! Well, I wasn’t really away, I just didn’t get to post my review on Thursday. But it’s here now, and it’s about a YA contemporary novel, no less!

Shocked? Thrilled? Both? Neither?

Well, I tried…


This review is completely spoiler-free.

wesley-james-ruined-my-life

  • Title: Wesley James Ruined My Life
  • Author: Jennifer Honeybourn
  • Publisher: Swoon Reads
  • Publication Date: July 18th, 2017
  • Page Count: 256

synopsis

In between striving to save up for her London trip, a grandmother she adores being put into a home, and an irresponsible gambling father, Quinn thought her summer couldn’t get any worse. That is, until her childhood friend, Wesley James, whom she now despises, returned to their hometown and decided he wanted to be part of her life again. Not only that, but he manages to get a job at the same medieval themed restaurant, the Tudor Thymes. All in order to annoy her! Right?

 

firstimpressions

The first time I saw this one was on Mandy’s blog, I think. We both fangirled about it featuring a girl working at a medieval themed restaurant and a hot guy set out to ruin her life… I mean, what could go wrong? Also, I loved the cover… So adorable! Unfortunately, the story itself didn’t live up to my initial expectations. At all.

 

thesweet2

It’s a short and fast read. I finished it in about two or three days, which for me is quite the record. Despite not being incredibly deep or complex (and to be fair, it did have a lot more to it than I previously thought it would), it served its purpose and entertained me. I found myself unable to put the book down, which I’m not really sure why now, but I didn’t complain.

Like any fluffy, cute contemporary, it had its dramatic moments. I found myself crying a couple times and feeling so much for the characters and their circumstances. It was actually quite heartbreaking.

I also liked that Quinn’s relationship with her grandma, her father, her aunt and her friends took up a considerable chunk of the story. It was nice that it wasn’t all about Wesley and romance. It was especially heartwarming to read about why she wanted to go to England.

I loved reading about the Tudor Thymes and the people working there. They were quite interesting and fun. Quinn’s summer job experience will probably resonate with a lot of readers, although I found it weird that she would feel embarrassed about it and think it was lame. Girl, a medieval themed restaurant is totally not lame!

I did enjoy the last quarter of the book more. I think that, without it, I would have given this a much lower rating. It tied up okay (if ever so predictably) and managed to redeem itself somewhat. I also thought the epilogue, especially, was really cute, if a bit rushed.

 

thebitter1

I didn’t care much for this story in the beginning, at all. In fact, I was ready to DNF it on the spot. But, because it was so short and I wanted to see how it would change my mind, I stuck around.

The big “secret” behind why Quinn hates Wesley made my eyes roll almost to the back of my skull. It was weak and just completely nonsensical. It also felt like the author had decided she needed a motive to have her main character “hate” this other character, so she made up one on the spot without giving it much thought.

I mean, I would have accepted that Quinn, at twelve years old, would have believed that. It makes perfect sense to me. But no way can anyone convince me she didn’t finally realize the truth a few years later. Especially not at SEVENTEEN.

I could also understand Quinn’s frustration while dealing with Wesley sometimes. What makes no sense to me is how the story progresses. For instance, had she confronted Wesley as soon as he’d step foot into Seattle, none of those awkward and stupid situations would have happened. Of course, there wouldn’t be any story to be told then, but you get what I mean.

Onto the next piece of this book that frustrated me to no end: Quinn’s way of handling the situation. I get she’s mad and she doesn’t want Wesley to work with her, but what she did to him? That is just not okay. Especially when Wesley is so nice and kind to her (and everyone else) ALL THE TIME, not to mention a great professional.

And sure, she’s seventeen and yada, yada, but the author did make Quinn sound like a very mature and reasonable person in several occasions. So I don’t understand why she wouldn’t act like one in this one important situation.

The romance was… Meh. It didn’t do much for me. Wesley was super sweet and adorable, though, and a lot more patient with Quinn than I would have been.

The “wanting to get even” thing got old fast and I stopped sympathizing with Quinn who, despite being one of the most self-aware heroines ever, doesn’t really do much to change her ways. What’s the point of knowing she’s acting crazy and unreasonable when she doesn’t actually do anything to stop it?

Finally, this book’s structure is a bit all over the place. Everything seemed to be skimmed/condensed and not given the proper attention. The little subplots were actually really interesting but not explored enough. The narrative needed to be more cohesive and the characters more developed.

The writing… Well, it was fine at places but really not good at others. In the end, this felt a lot more like reading fanfiction than a published work of fiction.

 

finalthoughts2
I had some high expectations for this one, which is probably why I was so disappointed. I mean, a medieval themed restaurant? Hate to love relationship? It sounded so cute and fun and the perfect summer read!

But it wasn’t. The whole “plot” and the reason Quinn hates Wesley is too weak. And the way it was revealed and resolved? Yeah, even worse. The characters were pretty okay, though. They were annoying at times but not totally unrealistic. The writing, however, could use some work.

Everything about this story is as predictable as one would think. Not to say it wasn’t cute, because it was. And addictive. It also made me cry, which was not something I was expecting at all. There were some really nice elements to it, such as Quinn’s relationships and family life, her job, and some cool Seattle exploration. The problem, I think, was lack of development. Everything was there, it just didn’t deliver.

Overall, Wesley James Ruined My Life was just very… Unmemorable. And quick. It was nice at times, sure, but I find it didn’t really hit the mark. Personally, I can’t really recommend it but by all means, read it and see for yourself.

 

Story & Plot:Β 1halfchoco-

Writing & Style:Β 2choco

Characters:Β 2halfchoco-

Pacing:Β 3choco

Enjoyment:Β 3choco

Final Rating:

2halfchoco0

***

Get Wesley James Ruined My Life at your local bookstore, BookDepository, Amazon and B&N.

Follow Jennifer Honeybourn on Twitter, Goodreads and her official website.

***

Thank you so much for reading and until next time!

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What did you think of my review? Do you plan to read Wesley James Ruined My Life? οΌˆβ‹†οΌΎοΌοΌΎβ‹†οΌ‰

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53 thoughts on “Wesley James Ruined My Life – Book Review (Spoiler-Free)

    1. It was cute, for sure, though not enough to distract me from everything else… But, who knows, you might enjoy it! We all have such different tastes, after all πŸ™‚
      Thank you so much, Krysti! ❀ ❀ It's so nice to see your comments again 😊 πŸ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

          1. It really does! I usually do okay when I’m on my laptop, but it seems that I get sent to spam most frequently when I’m on my phone. Which I hate, because I try to sneak in some blog hopping on my breaks at work. Oh well! πŸ™‚

            Liked by 1 person

            1. Really? I didn’t notice that, but then again I fail to check whether I’ve been sent to spam or not XD (total airhead here…)
              Me too! I use the app to make the best out of every minute available but it’s definitely not very practical so I mostly use it to reply back to comments and stuff. I do most of my blog hopping on my computer, whenever I can, which is not very often unfortunately πŸ˜•

              Liked by 1 person

  1. I’m sorry you didn’t enjoy this Sophie! It seems like it had such potential to be those summery contemporaries where you just melt with feels! But a weak grudge? Nah! I don’t think is for me, if the girl holds a petty grudge! Nice review though! It is a rather cute cover!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh I was so ready to fangirl all over this book but… It didn’t happen 😦
      I thought the motive was pretty weak, all things considered. Like I said, a child would have thought so, certainly, but a teenager? Nah.
      Besides, the whole miscommunication thing just annoyed me. It felt like a very cheap ploy to create tension and extend the story for as long as possible. Not my cup of tea.
      Thank you so much, Rendz! ^^ And yes, the cover is super adorable ❀ ❀

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Great review for this book Sophie, though I’m sorry it didn’t live up to your expectations. πŸ™‚
    I’m actually going to be starting this one soon myself. I’ve had it on my Summer TBR list for a while now and thought I may as well get around to it seeing as I have a copy of my Kindle. πŸ˜€
    I wouldn’t say I have high expectations but after reading your review I will be going into it with slightly lowered expectations. Maybe that’ll help me enjoy it a little more.
    Again great review, and hopefully the next book you pick up will be a better one for you. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Beth! ❀ Yeah, I was so disappointed 😦
      I really hope you enjoy it! I found the beginning hard to get through, but the rest was actually pretty decent. Super cute at times! A bit eye-rolling at times, too. Like I said, I enjoyed a lot of things, but overall, it just wasn't for me. Who knows, maybe it'll surprise you πŸ™‚
      Thanks, I really hope so too! ^^ I don't want to give up on contemporaries but this one was really not a great start hahaha

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s all right, I’ve actually read and finished it today and I was really disappointed as well.
        I didn’t mind Wesley, and the concept but I was not a fan of Quinn’s character for so many reasons and I completely agree with you on the reason she hates Wesley. :/
        There are definitely much better contemporaries out there. Hopefully the next one you decide to pick up will be a better read and restore your faith in the genre. πŸ™‚ ❀️

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Oh I’m so sorry to hear that! 😦 I was crossing my fingers for you! Glad to know it wasn’t just me, though…
          I wasn’t a fan of Wesley’s at first. He felt too cocky for me. But then he revealed a side of him that had me go all “aaaww”. I think Quinn was the opposite: she was quite level-headed and mature in the beginning, but quickly became insufferable. She was not the worst main character around but she had a lot to improve. Poor Wesley!
          So yeah, I completely agree: cool concept, faulty execution.
          Thank you so much, Beth ❀ 😊 I certainly hope so! I shall continue my quest for the perfect contemporary hahaha

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Nope, definitely not just you, and it’s a shame but I’m reading another contemporary book now which is much better so it’s making up for this one in a way.
            Oh see for me it really was the other way around, I didn’t mind Wesley’s character but couldn’t stand Quinn’s. Just some of the things she did I really couldn’t get behind.
            That’s all right! πŸ˜€ ❀

            Liked by 1 person

            1. Hahaha it’s always interesting how different people get different impressions from the same book 😊
              I’m really glad you’re enjoying the one you’re reading now! I’m currently reading A Gathering of Shadows and it’s been quite pleasant too 😊 Schwab can always make it better! πŸ˜›

              Liked by 1 person

  3. hehe at first this sounded like something I’d really enjoy… but it sounds like it’s really hard to get into. I also really don’t like when a plot depends so much on miscommunication or a character not getting something- so I can totally see why that would be frustrating. If they hate each other for no reason, then it can be really annoying!! I am a sucker for a good ending, but in all honesty, if the rest of the book doesn’t deliver, I can’t see myself picking it up- especially if the romance was meh! Great review though!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know, right?? I thought this would be absolutely perfect for me! But alas, ’twas not to be… 😦
      I totally agree, miscommunication and just general avoidance in order to create tension and move the plot along just feels cheap and lazy. I wouldn’t mind if it were justified, but in this case it really wasn’t. I’m not sure what I would do if I were in Quinn’s shoes, and having been hurt by someone I used to be friends with can really strike a blow, but eh. Still not convinced.
      The epilogue was really sweet but it was like, two pages long LOL The ending before that was pretty nice too but kind of rushed so I couldn’t really embrace it as much as I’d like. So definitely don’t hold high expectations if you do end up reading this.
      Personally, I didn’t care much for the romance. Which rendered this book pretty pointless. But who knows, you might like it.
      Thank you so much! 😊 ❀ ❀

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I want to read this book but now I think I need to lower my expectations because recently, I’ve been seeing mixed reviews. Thanks for the wonderful review! I hope it doesn’t disappoint me! πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Honestly, this might be a case of “it’s not you, it’s me” because most reviews I’ve seen floating around are pretty positive. So I really hope you end up enjoying it, Raven πŸ™‚ Like I said, it’s quite cute! It just needed a little something extra.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Ugh, noooooooooooooooooooooooooo. I was SO excited for this one, but something inside me was a tad scared that it wasn’t going to work out like this. UGH. I’m so sorry that it didn’t live up to its great premise. A few things sounded SO great, but the bitter was really…bitter. Oh very dear. D: Wonderful review, though, Sophie, and I’m putting this super down the TBR. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I KNOOOWWW T_T But don’t worry, Mandy, you might still love it! I just didn’t feel like it was for me, personally. But, like I said, it was still pretty cute at times and thought it was quite addictive, so… It had to do *something* right hahaha
      I was SO confused as to how to rate this one. I wasn’t sure if I’d bump it up another half star or not… In the end, I felt this was appropriate but I’m still pondering it LOL I think, in the end, it’s just my *wanting* to love it. But we’ll see!
      Thank you so much, Mandy! ❀ ❀ I really hope you enjoy it if you do get to read it. Being a contemporary kind of gal, your taste might differ from mine πŸ™‚

      Like

  6. This was a great review. ☺ It’s a shame it didn’t meet expectations. I’ve got it on request from the library right now and I’m curious to read it for myself. I liked the idea of the Tudor themed restaurant, as I love the Medieval Times franchise (one location is near me).

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Heather! ❀ Yeah, it didn't for me but it might be a great read for you! **crossing my fingers it is**
      Honestly, that was the first thing that interested me as well! Fortunately, we do get to spend a lot of time there, so that was cool. But I still wish there had been more! It was probably my favorite part in the whole book and I had so much fun.
      Again, hoping you do too! ☺

      Like

    1. It had the potential to be, yeah, but unfortunately didn’t really do it for me… I’m sure a lot of people will like it, though! πŸ™‚ It’s cute and fun at times, and just needed a little something to really get there.
      Thank you so much, Marta! ❀

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Oh my… I was thinking this is exactly the kind of light read I need in my life right now… I don’t read YA contemps often but they are a good cure for dark days! πŸ˜€ However, going by your review, I think it would annoy me more than comfort me… It sounds half good, half not so good… Great review though πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, I thought so too! Plus, it sounded extra cute with the whole medieval restaurant thing… But oh well!
      It did get pretty annoying at times but it had its pleasant moments too ☺️
      Guess we need to keep looking for the perfect contemporary πŸ˜›
      Thank you so much, Liz! ❀️

      Liked by 1 person

  8. 2.5 stars. OUCH! I had actually run across this cover on Netgalley and thought it looked adorable. Read the synopsis, too, and thought it was really cool that she would be working at a medieval themed restaurant for the summer! I mean, Medieval Times. I LOVE that show. But I guess this book isn’t all that good in comparison haha. I’m so sorry that you didn’t enjoy this one all that much, Sophie. It sounded like a really cute read and there were a couple of tropes I actually like to come across in fluffy YA contemporaries. I don’t think I’ll be putting this one on my TBR, though haha. Fantastic review, btw!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, I know!! I was so pumped for it 😭 But it didn’t live up to my expectations at all… Everything about it was average, at best.
      I’m a sucker for the haters to lovers trope but even that wasn’t able to save this.
      So I totally get that hahaha
      Thank you so much, Azia!! ❀️❀️❀️

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Aw that stinks. And I love that haters to lovers trope, too. But only if it’s done right, which this one definitely sounds like it was not haha. Eh, that’s all right. There are better ones out there πŸ˜‰

        Like

  9. It’s sad to hear that this book didn’t live up to your expectations. There’s nothing worse than being disappointed by a book that promises so much more than it actually gives πŸ™ But at least you found some things that you did like πŸ™‚Β Hope the next book you read is better!
    Great review as always!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I’m sorry to hear about the disappointment you went through with this one. It does sound and look cute and fluffy and first… But then, it seemed like you crunched on some really hard and ugly parts a little too often. Inconsistencies, character and story-wise, would’ve definitely turned me off as well. It’s nice to see how you pointed out the good even with all the bad around it. Great review, Sophie! πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, it’s a shame because I really breezed through this one! It was a very easy read. A very cute one, at times, too. So that’s why I still managed to squeeze in some good points.
      But then the not so great things stuck out like a sore thumb and I just couldn’t ignore them. Inconsistent is the best word for it, I think. It could have been great but it just didn’t reach its full potential at all.
      Thank you, Lashaan! πŸ™‚ I guess I’ll continue my search for super awesome books hahaha

      Liked by 1 person

      1. No I don’t plan to. A book that frustrates you will probably frustrates me too.. The list of things you list out in the bitter is also on my bitter list haha.. I don’t have a list, but I agree with them πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

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