Emma Grey, Unrequited, HarperCollins Australia, 18 Sept 2017, 288pp., $19.99 (pbk), ISBN: 9781460755044
Unrequited is the story of seventeen-year old Kat Hartland, a serious lover of proper music and serious hater of the biggest boy band in the world — Unrequited. So when she has to take her Unrequited-obsessed twin sisters to Unrequited’s concert, she is not happy. She needs to be doing other things like working on her song and finding a date to the school formal. On the way to the concert she is rescued by a super hot med student and there is an instant attraction. Then at the concert Angus Marsden, the band’s super hot lead singer seems to single Kat out. And so begins this Cinderella story with two Prince Charmings! But unlike the original, Kat’s aims are higher than just finding the perfect man. She also has dreams of doing well in her HSC and of pursuing a music career, which she has hidden from everyone, especially her Mum.
I love this kind of book. It’s fun, fast and makes you feel good. It proves that something doesn’t have to be oozing sorrow and filled with deep issues to be fantastic. It just needs to have a cracking story, great writing and characters you love.
And it’s hard not to fall in love with Kat. She’s a typical teen, trying hard to figure out what she really wants from life and how that will affect the people around her. She is strong, caring and creative and her inexperience with relationships makes her endearing. I sympathised with her feeling of being truly overwhelmed for the first time and her struggle to make everything work.
From the outset this book’s energy engulfed me. It pulled me in and sent me back to my teen years – in a good way! Emma Grey writes with obvious passion and spirit which elevates the story and gives it that spark that makes YA literature unique and special. And yes, this book has a happy ending and yes, there are a few ‘convenient coincidences’ but the story is still fabulous and zooms along with enough twists and turns to keep the reader guessing and craving more.
Unrequited is a diverting, cute, YA romance, oozing with energy and just enough fantasy to keep me hooked. I still smile when I think about this book and I’m sure it’s a story most teen girls will love for its endearing characters, its voice and the satisfying ending.