ABOUT THE BOOK
young adult contemporary romance published by Balzer + Bray on December 31st, 2013
Wren Caswell is average. Ranked in the middle of her class at Sacred Heart, she’s not popular, but not a social misfit. Wren is the quiet, “good” girl who’s always done what she’s supposed to—only now in her junior year, this passive strategy is backfiring. She wants to change, but doesn’t know how.
Grayson Barrett was the king of St. Gabe’s. Star of the lacrosse team, top of his class, on a fast track to a brilliant future—until he was expelled for being a “term paper pimp” Now Gray is in a downward spiral and needs to change, but doesn’t know how.
One fateful night their paths cross when Wren, working at her family’s Arthurian-themed catering hall, performs the Heimlich on Gray as he chokes on a cocktail weenie, saving his life literally and figuratively. What follows is the complicated, awkward, hilarious, and tender tale of two teens shedding their pasts, figuring out who they are—and falling in love.
At a glance, The Promise of Amazing seems to have everything: a girl who is at a crossroad about her future, a guy whose life sucks; then one day they meet and BAM. Yes, we’ve all read similar books. But what makes The Promise of Amazing so different and why did it fail to deliver on that particular difference it tried to make?
Cutesy romances being held back by conflicts are sweet and enjoyable only as long as they don’t stray too far from the adorability factor. I was not comfortable reading The Promise of Amazing and had to cringe at several scenes. You see, Wren saves Grayson from choking at a wedding reception, where she’s a waitress and is usually humiliated by being called the weenie girl (don’t ask). If you were curious how it feels to save someone from choking, you don’t have to be anymore.
According to The Promise of Amazing, the Heimlich maneuver is actually something to burn up thinking about because of just ‘how intimately’ you’d have already touched the person you saved. Moreover, it’s actually okay to stare and subsequently puke at the person (or their shoes) who just saved your life a second ago and then be all, ‘The distance between us closed, and it was just . . . her. And me. Calm in the chaos.’
All that under 50 pages into the book and it was enough to put me off of reading it. Alas, I couldn’t, because I’d much rather cringe over the book than obsess over the fact that I DNF-ed said book. Suffice it to say that it all goes pretty much downhill from there on. The way of dealing with the main conflict is actually laughable and the characters manage to change for the worse as the story progresses.
The Promise of Amazing reinforces the fact that a cute cover and well err, a promise of an ever cuter romance can be misleading. The severely lacking, unrealistic romance, petty jealousies, weak conflict and weaker subplots upon subplots only made it harder for me to hold attention. Despite knowing that it’s not possible to unread The Promise of Amazing, I really wish there was some way I could remove the memory of ever coming across the word ‘brainathiminal’ from my mind. Sorry book, you just turned out to be an epitome of disappointment for me.
‘Everything kept changing so fast; I wondered if I’d ever catch up.’
Charlie Diaz says
Despite the negative reviews, I was still hoping for a ray of sunshine but seeing reviews like this from you guys totally made me forget why I wanted to give this a try. I never, not even once, thought that Heimlich maneuver could be intimate.
Charlie @ Letter Trails
Allie @ Little Birdie Books says
I don't think I've seen a positive review of this book yet, which is a shame because I really liked the synopsis.
Definitely will be giving it a miss. Sorry you had to be one of the test-bunnies for this! Lol
And another negative review, haha. I'm not even surprised now, because this book sounds horrible. Such a shame, because the cover is cute and I like the title. This is a miss for almost everyone, so I'm staying away 😀
I've read so many negative reviews for this one. That makes me so sad because I just love the cover to pieces! But everything you said definitely makes it sound like one to avoid. Sigh.
Shannelle C. says
Oh man, I just feel so sorry for the book. It's like Ink all over again. Pretty cover, interesting synopsis, but just a total flop in terms of execution of the story. And the cover's just so pretty and cute.
But that bit about the Heimlich maneuver sounds absolutely off. Who the hell would find that intimate? There's something wrong with a person who would care about such a thing when trying to save someone's life. I'll just raise my eyebrow at it, although I'm pitying it inside.
Ha ha, I saw you tweeting about the puking scene on twitter and I wanted to puke myself. If someone puked on me, I would be like, NO, YOU STAY AWAY FROM ME. No way would the "distance between us [close]" – if it did, I'll smack the person with a part of their puke (aka kick them with their own puke on my shoes).