Young Adult

Chasing the Taillights

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Book Information

Title: Chasing the Taillights
Author: Kate Larkindale
Publisher: Evernight Teen
Genre: Contemporary | LGBTQ+ | Urban
Publication Date: February 26, 2021

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CW/TW: Parental Death | Internalized Homophobia | Substance Abuse | Mental Health Crisis

Chasing the Taillights Synopsis

Lucy and Tony share nothing except genes. Tony’s the champion diver destined for greatness. Lucy’s biggest concern is getting Cute Guy from the burger joint to ask her out.

After an accident kills their parents, the siblings are forced to rely on one another—and decide whether to reveal their secrets.

Lucy can’t tell Tony what she knows about the accident for fear of destroying the tentative bond between them. If she doesn’t confess, she might lose her mind. If she does, she might lose the only person she has left who loves her.

Tony has problems too. Between diving practice, classes and concealing the crush he has on his best friend Jake, Tony needs to find room in his life for his sister, but his own stability dwindles with every passing day.

As the siblings struggle to overcome a lifetime of past conflicts and jealousies, they discover they might have more in common than a love of rock music.

Chasing the Taillights Review

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Chasing the Taillights is a phenomenal and emotional read. It follows Lucy and Tony through the loss of their parents and how it changes the siblings both individually and their relationship with each other. `This book is about grief and loss, but also about the ties between family, and how when tragedy happens it can bring people closer to those who have drifted apart. Lucy having gone with her parents to a mutual friend’s wedding wakes up in the hospital with no recollection of what happened since the arrived at the wedding. Tony, having missed the wedding due to his demanding schedule for dive practice and university, gets a call from his uncle’s partner tell him to come home in the middle of the night. After learning of the loss of their parents, Lucy and Tony navigate what this means for them. At 16, Lucy needs a guardian and her parents wished it to be her uncle. however, Tony and Lucy decide that her staying with the uncle they never really got to know just didn’t feel right and decide that Tony will be transferred guardianship of his sister. Tony is now juggling his sister with trauma and her health, a demanding university schedule, his practices for diving as he is expected to be a champion, his friendship with Jake and also the grief his feels having lost his parents. How many balls will drop as Tony navigates through all of this? Will Lucy end up falling through the cracks?

Kate’s writing style was great! The story just flowed and was easy to comprehend. This story isn’t complicated with many plot points but more about the emotions and feeling what the characters felt. The emotion poured onto the page had me going for the tissues more times than I can count. Kate touched on a lot of themes and managed to cover going through grief and loss while coming into yourself and who you are so well. The world was well created – very realistic. The details throughout the world including what university life is like and how things are dealt with in a situation like this was pretty well thought out. I did like the pacing of the book. I wish we actually got to see a flash forward of Tony and Lucy at the end of the novel, but the ending provided so much closure for both them and the reader. This novel really reminds me of the duology, If I Stay and Where She Went by Gayle Forman. I highly recommend this book if you liked that series, or if you are looking for a contemporary read, or a book about how family can see you through the worst moments of your life.

A special thank you goes out to the author, Kate Larkindale, for providing me a copy of this book for review!

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About Kate Larkindale

Having spent a lifetime travelling the globe, Kate Larkindale settled in Wellington, New Zealand. A marketing executive, film reviewer and mother, she’s surprised she finds any time to write, but doesn’t sleep much. As a result, she can usually be found hanging out near the espresso machine.

She is the author of contemporary YA novels The Sidewalk’s Regrets, An Unstill Life, Chasing the Taillights and Stumped along with several others that no one is allowed to see. She has also written one very bad historical romance, which will likely never see the light of day. She is working on several more YA novels that may or may not ever be finished…

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