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This book packed an emotional punch. Crazy Madly Deeply pulled me into the story right from the first page and kept my unwavering attention until the very end. While this is a new adult romance at its core, I think what struck me and affected me the most was the relevant and timely message that it delivered.
Tranquil Falls was a town that was divided into two parts: the rich, privileged side, and the poor side. This division was also present in the local high school, where football reigned supreme and your parents’ paychecks and influence decided your worth. It was a landscape of trying to fit in by any means possible, or risk being ostracized by the in-crowd. Holden Bishop was an outcast. He never felt the need to fit in. He knew who he was and walked to the beat of his own drum, much to the chagrin of his fellow classmates. His lack of interest in being like the rest of the athletic/popular herd put a target on his back among the bullies.
It was impossible not to root for Holden. He was such a gifted, self-aware young man whose heart was bigger than that whole town. The only things that mattered to him were his art and his family, especially his younger sister. But it didn’t seem to matter how good of a person he was, or that he just wanted to finish his high school years and leave that corrupt town behind, Tranquil Falls and its entitled citizens just seemed to be a dark cloud hovering over him, hindering him at every turn and opportunity.
As I was reading this book, I could visualize every little detail and scene. I was immediately invested in the characters and the story. There were characters who touched my heart, some I wanted to high five, some I wanted to give an encouraging pat on the back, and a few others that, well, I wanted to see get their comeuppance. I loved the author’s description of being large and small. It demonstrated how the characters who were living the largest were actually the smallest.
Crazy Madly Deeply was a suspenseful, raw, gritty, emotional reading experience, one that I won’t soon forget. This was my first book by this author, and I have since added her other books to my to-be-read list.