Other Words For Love by Lorraine Zago Rosenthal
Reading Level: Young Adult
Release Date: January 11, 2011
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Source: Received from author/publicist for honest review
Summary: When an unexpected inheritance enables Ari to transfer to an elite Manhattan prep school, she makes a wealthy new friend, Leigh. Leigh introduces Ari to the glamorous side of New York—and to her gorgeous cousin, Blake. Ari doesn't think she stands a chance, but amazingly, Blake asks her out. As their romance heats up, they find themselves involved in an intense, consuming relationship. Ari's family worries that she is losing touch with the important things in life, like family, hard work, and planning for the future. When misfortune befalls Blake's family, he pulls away, and Ari's world drains of color. As she struggles to get over the breakup, Ari must finally ask herself: were their feelings true love . . . or something else?
My Review: Other Words For Love is an enthralling debut with realistic issues surrounding family, friends and love. Not only did Lorraine gracefully capture everyday scenarios but she nailed it with a New York-esque vibe. Call me biased but I loved the fact that the main character was from my borough of Brooklyn. Which brings me to Ari, she was a sweet and patient teen with a sensitive side. But, as time went on, I started seeing her insecurities surface. On top of that, her eccentric family members didn't help the situation. The only individual I found sort of sane was her mother. Her father was M.I.A. and her sister was one crazy, bi-polar witch. One part I did find a little disturbing was Ari's crush on her sister's husband. I mean it happens, you can admire someone's handsome features but not in a "I want to make out with my brother in law" kind of way. I must say though it was extremely entertaining.
Now, as for the friendship department, her best friend Summer was an evil and cunning individual who didn't shy away from flirting. Half the things that came out of her mouth, made me cringe. If I was in Ari's shoes for a day, I'd unfortunately have to punch her dead in the mouth. Thank you Lorraine for creating characters that make my blood boil. Moving on, the last 150 pages picked up when Ari's first love, Blake enters the picture. All the drama following her relationship starts to escalate to an unexpected conclusion. The ups and downs Ari goes through is normal considering the circumstances. It truly is a relatable story line that most of us could connect with on a certain level. By the end, I was left smiling which by far is the best way to finish a book. I am ecstatic to see Lorraine's development as a writer. Her debut definitely showcased her writing skills which leads me to believe there is more amazing books on the way!
Lorraine Zago Rosenthal was born and raised in New York City. She earned a bachelor's degree in psychology and a master's in education from the University of South Florida. She also earned a master's in English, with a concentration in American and British literature, from Northern Kentucky University. In addition to writing fiction, Lorraine enjoys reading, watching movies, and spending time with her husband. Other Words for Love is her first novel.
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