Genre: New Adult, Romance, Contemporary
Release Date: August 26, 2014
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Word Rating: Super adorable
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A Little Something Different is just like the title suggests: a little something different. While the story is about Lea and Gabe falling in love, it’s told from the points of view of various people who interacted with them and knew they belonged together. The perspectives vary a lot: there’s Lea’s roommate, Gabe’s brother, the Chinese food delivery guy, the Starbucks barista, the diner waitress, the angry guy from creative writing, a bench, a squirrel, and many more – it’s kind of like a big party!
The way Lea and Gabe’s story progresses is pretty slow at first – they meet in creative writing class and are very shy around each other. It takes them a while to even formally introduce each other and have a real conversation even though they seem to always sit next to each other in class. Since there are no passages in Lea and Gabe’s perspective, we get most of what they’re thinking through what they tell their friends. The way the story progressed and how Lea and Gabe talked to their friends felt really natural.
Some romances either feel like the two know they are destined to be together but something is keeping them apart or they didn’t get along but then realized they belong together. A Little Something Different isn’t like that at all. It starts out as a crush for Lea and Gabe, Lea saying in passing to her friends that Gabe is cute and Gabe asking girl advice from a friend. Their love story is a slow one, starting at the beginning of the school year in September and ending after finals in May. It perfectly portrays the slow progression of a crush into a relationship, especially for someone who is kind of shy and not too forward about his feelings.
Speaking of shy, I’m talking about Gabe – he is by no means the typical love interest in a story. Gabe admits that he’s shy pretty early on in the book, writing something for creative writing about how shy he is, but it’s clear that something else is holding him back. I liked that his struggle with something that happened in his past was clearly something to struggle with but wasn’t as extreme as these types of things are in other contemporaries. While it’s a big deal to him and he has trouble coming to terms with it, it’s not like What Happened takes over the entire story – its just a bit of background that gives him more dimension.
While Gabe was very shy, Lea was a bit more forward. I enjoyed the way Lea would get frustrated about the relationship and how much she talked about it with her friends. Lea was self conscious and worried about what Gabe thought about her and her struggles were so normal that it’s something everyone can relate to.
The best thing about this book is that it has a sense of humor. The different narrators of the book were really funny about the way they talked about Lea and Gabe. It was especially humorous how some of them would meddle in the relationship and give advice, and even when they weren’t sure why they cared about Lea and Gabe at all. If you read my recent Stuffed Animal Saturday post (here), then you know how funny the squirrel’s point of view is. I’m definitely biased towards the squirrel and the bench (there are literally passages from the point of view of a bench), but I enjoyed the voices of all the other narrators as well.
Overall, A Little Something Different lives up to its name and tells a really different kind of love story. I picked up this ARC at BEA in hopes of an adorable story with a great sense of humor and I was not disappointed. I highly recommend checking this one out when it’s released, especially if you like sweet romances and stories from multiple points of view.
What type of romance story is your favorite?
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