Dec 19, 2013

Review: The Promise of Amazing by Robin Constantine

Title: The Promise of Amazing
Author: Robin Constantine
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Publishing Date: December 31, 2013
Pages/Format: 384, eARC

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.

Initial Reaction of Book in One Word: Cute!

I won't lie; I went into The Promise of Amazing hoping for something promising and amazing. I thought it might be super cute like Anna and the French Kiss or The Distance Between Us. While it wasn't not cute, and it wasn't bad, this book fell short of amazing and hit a little higher than okay.

The Promise of Amazing is told from the alternating POVs of Wren and Grayson. Wren's quiet, doesn't know what she wants to do with her life, and is not quite over her "hump-and-dump" from the summer. Grayson's an expelled private school boy with a not-so-good past, a girl user, and he's not really going anywhere. But when Wren performs the Heimlich on Grayson at his cousin's wedding at the Camelot (Wren's family owns the place), sparks fly, and the two have an instant connection. From there, they have their ups and downs.

I can't think of anything that was a direct issue with this book; it was just missing that something to make it amazing. I did have some problems with the story itself. I liked Grayson, but he was a bit of an ass, and he did some really stupid things when he didn't want to lose Wren. I didn't have too many issues with Wren, though she was [SPOILER] a bit quick to sleep with him (I think they did) if you ask me. And their love was a bit too instant, though that didn't bother me too much. It's fiction, and I like a cute love story. [END SPOILER]

Don't get me wrong--I did like The Promise of Amazing, more so than not. (It's just one of those books that's hard to put into words.) It didn't take long for me to get into it--and I was really into it several times--and many scenes were fantastic. And I definitely had some feels. The writing wasn't bad and it had some fun and wit to it; I wouldn't say no to reading something by Constantine in the future. Also, this went a bit deeper than a cute book (though I'd still classify it as that), especially with Grayson. It had a slight air of mystery to it (and him), and I liked that. Based on the synopsis, the book really isn't what I had expected at all.

In the end, this book had a nice romance and interesting plot, with a few things mixed between. It didn't have any glaring issues, but there was that unnameable something missing. However, I did like this book. (I don't feel much now, but I almost liked it a lot while reading it...I think? Like I said, I don't remember.) If you're looking for a quick, cute contemporary that's basically a feel-good (a pretty light read, I'd say), this is one of those books. But while The Promise of Amazing sounds promising (and looks it with that adorable cover), it falls short of amazing (for me, at least).

Did I like it? Yep!
Did I love it? No.
Would I reread it? Possibly.
Would I purchase it? Maybe--I wouldn't mind having a light, "safe" book on my shelves.
Who would I recommend it to? Contemporary lovers, especially those who like the cute and fluffy (and maybe a bit more).

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review, and that in no way sways my opinion of the book.


  1. Thanks for an honest review. I've wanted to read this one for a while. Will still be checking it out, but at least now I'm prepared if it isn't what I hoped :)

  2. Review twins! I didn't hate this book but I don't really have any feelings about it. I was underwhelmed by the bleh.


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