Jun 3, 2014

~REVIEW~ Flat-Out Celeste by Jessica Park

Flat-Out Celeste (Flat-Out Love, #2)


Whether you were charmed by Celeste in Flat-Out Love or are meeting her for the first time, this book is a joyous celebration of differences, about battling private wars that rage in our heads and in our hearts, and—very much so— this is a story about first love.

For high-school senior Celeste Watkins, every day is a brutal test of bravery. And Celeste is scared. Alienated because she’s too smart, her speech too affected, her social skills too far outside the norm, she seems to have no choice but to retreat into isolation.

But college could set her free, right? If she can make it through this grueling senior year, then maybe. If she can just find that one person to throw her a lifeline, then maybe, just maybe.

Justin Milano, a college sophomore with his own set of quirks, could be that person to pull her from a world of solitude. To rescue her—that is, if she’ll let him.

Together, they may work. Together, they may save each other. And together they may also save another couple—two people Celeste knows are absolutely, positively flat-out in love.


**ARC provided by author for review**

The Plot

In Flat-out Love we were introduced to Celeste Watkins. If you haven't read FOL you should definitely do so in order to get the full story. 

Years after dealing with her psychological condition Celeste is now battling against those who judge her because of her intellect. Since starting high school she has had to deal with the bullying from her classmates and the fact that she is seen as a "nut job". Fed up and in an attempt to reinvent herself Celeste tries to fit in with different circles. But even that doesn't help. It is not until she is contacted by a Berkley University recruiter that Celeste learns how special she really is.  

Justin Milano turns out to be just what Celeste needs. Someone to open her eyes to the reality that she is special in a wonderful way and is worth loving.

The Characters
In the previous books, I adored Celeste. I learned so much of her through Julie and Matt that I couldn't wait to read more about her. However in FOC she seems to have taken two steps backwards. Not in a bad way necessarily. Just that all the confidence that Julie helped her gain diminished because of what she has been through in the time that she has been in high school. I was a little upset by it but was happy to see her interact with Justin and to grow comfortable with herself. She was so broken and to see her find her place in the world was wonderful. 

Justin was just ADORABLE!! I LOVE Matt but Justin is up there close to him. His abundance of energy and his energy was so cute and had me smiling throughout the whole book. Justin also grew up uncomfortable with who he is because of his peers but he learned to accept himself and was intent on making sure Celeste saw the same in herself. He was patient, kind, hilarious, and just plain Awesome. He gave Matt a run for his money. :) 

And lets not forget our FOL and FOM characters. I enjoyed checking up on Julie and Matt years after their relationship kicked off. Their journey isn't in the same place and it was a little sad to actually see where they were. Nevertheless, Matt and Julie always find a way to each other and this time it isn't any different.

The Romance

OMG! Jessica is PHENOMENAL at dishing out the romance. In her previous Flat-out books we experienced Julie and Matt fall in love through emails and gestures. Moments that held so much passion, hilarity, love, friendship, and saddening secrets. In this one we get the same formula with a different twist. All the sweet emails, text, and moments between these two were just heartwarming. I laughed and smiled so much throughout this story and that is what I love about Jessica's writing. No matter how serious the story she finds those special places to add beautiful and hilarious moments to the plot. Moments like her famous Christmas scenes. **Swoon** :)

The Wrap-Up 

I can't really tell you why this one is only 4 stars. Only that it was wonderful but its hard when I compare this to the first one.  Justin was wonderful and Celeste was pretty easy to relate to but their story didn't captivate me like Julie and Matt's. Nevertheless, you need to read this and catch up with the Watkins and watch Celeste find herself and find love.


Favorite Quotes

“You don't want to miss out on people. If you assume everyone is out to get you, then you're going to shut them down before they have a chance to prove you wrong.” 

“And you have me. Sometimes you need someone else to believe in you, to carry you, until you can do that yourself. Let me carry you. You’re almost there. Damn it, Celeste, you’re almost there. God, please, you have me, and I want you.” He stopped walking back and forth and put both of his hands over his heart. “I want you so much.” 

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” 

“I won the battles, Justin. And I won the war. And now there is no more fighting. Now there is peace. You told me to let the joy win out, and I am choosing to do that.” 

“I am choosing a love that defies boundaries and a life that defies boundaries. That is the power of Celeste.”  

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