‘WINDFALL’ – Jennifer E. Smith

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Alice doesn’t believe in luck—at least, not the good kind. But she does believe in love, and for some time now, she’s been pining for her best friend, Teddy. On his eighteenth birthday—just when it seems they might be on the brink of something—she buys him a lottery ticket on a lark. To their astonishment, he wins $140 million, and in an instant, everything changes.

At first, it seems like a dream come true, especially since the two of them are no strangers to misfortune. As a kid, Alice won the worst kind of lottery possible when her parents died just over a year apart from each other. And Teddy’s father abandoned his family not long after that, leaving them to grapple with his gambling debts. Through it all, Teddy and Alice have leaned on each other. But now, as they negotiate the ripple effects of Teddy’s newfound wealth, a gulf opens between them. And soon, the money starts to feel like more of a curse than a windfall.

As they try to find their way back to each other, Alice learns more about herself than she ever could have imagined . . . and about the unexpected ways in which luck and love sometimes intersect.

 

Thanks to Macmillan for sending me an arc of Windfall and letting me be apart of the blog tour!

EEEEEEK! I just finished reading this five minutes ago and I loved it so much! I’ve been in a reading slump for so long mainly because every book I’ve picked up just hasn’t captivated me. It’s been so long since I read a book that captivated me and that I couldn’t put down. I started this at about 5pm last night and finished it and 1pm today!

The characters each had their own touching stories and this took over the main story line. Even though Teddy winning the lottery is the basis of the book, it isn’t the overall story. Alice’s parents died when she was little and her memories of them are getting grainier, she’s been in love with her best friend Teddy since she was little and he is beginning to slip from her grasp, and end of high school is approaching and she has college to think about. Teddy’s father ran out on him and his mum years ago and he only hears from him when he’s in money trouble, his mum works the night shift and he never gets to see her, and he’s just won the lottery and doesn’t know what to do with the money. And then we have Leo, and even though we don’t get as much from his character, he has just broken up with his boyfriend and lives in a constant paranoia because he has never experienced anything bad like his best friends.

Windfall

The story line was extremely captivating (which explained how I couldn’t put it down) but it was also a very simple story line. There wasn’t too much crazy stuff going on and it was easy to follow, which I love especially in YA contemporaries. Teddy winning millions of dollars in the lottery teaches a good lesson in this book; money can’t buy everything, but it sure can help a lot of people out. When Teddy first wins, he doesn’t know what to do with the money because he and his mother have been paying of his dad’s debts for years. And now he has enough money to buy anything that he wants, so for a while he goes a bit crazy with it. But when he realises that he can do a lot of good in the world with this money, it completely turns the story around. It’s not just a story about money and winning and greed anymore; it’s a story about love and compassion and good.

And then we have the friendship between the three main characters; Alice, Teddy and Leo. I love strong friendships between groups in books because I think it definitely adds a lot of depth to the story. Teddy would have to be my favourite character because he is a lot of fun, light hearted, and even though he’s been through a lot, he still likes to see the good in everything and everyone. We also had a bit of romance between Alice and Teddy, and I admired how Jennifer E. Smith didn’t make this the whole story, and in fact it was barely mentioned apart from the beginning and end… even though I was dying for them to get together the whole time!

I highly recommend everyone to read this incredibly fun, touching and important story! It made me think about a lot of things that I have never thought about, and it even made me question what I would do with the money if I won the lottery! I would like to think that myself (and a lot of others) would do good like Teddy!

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