It Sounded Better In My Head by Nina Kenwood | Book Review


BLURB: From debut author, Nina Kenwood comes a tender, funny, and compulsively readable novel about first love and its confusions, and all of the awkwardness of teen romance.

When her parents announce their impending divorce, Natalie can’t understand why no one is fighting, or at least mildly upset. Then Zach and Lucy, her two best friends, hook up, leaving her feeling slightly miffed and decidedly awkward. She’d always imagined she would end up with Zach one day―in the version of her life that played out like a TV show, with just the right amount of banter, pining, and meaningful looks. Now everything has changed, and nothing is quite making sense. Until an unexpected romance comes along and shakes things up even further (Goodreads).
On a really cold, wet day, you can hide everything but a sliver of your face. It is a joy. A freedom that people who aren't anxious about their bodies cannot understand.

Title: It Sounded Better In My Head
Author: Nina Kenwood
Genre: Young Adult, Fiction, Contemporary
Goodreads rating: 4.03
Pages: 272
Publication: April 7th 2020 by Flatiron Books
Source: Amazon Kindle
Reading Format: E-book
Standalone/Series: Standalone
Review type: Non-spoilery

By the sound of how I describe the book, it might seem just like all other contemporary books you’ve ever read. Or at least for me, I thought it was going to be another 3.5 stars YA contemporary book when I first read the synopsis. In some ways, it is just like all the other good contemporary books; the story happens in a very short span of time too so this book might not sound as special as the other good contemporary books everyone had read but there’s one thing that makes this book shine: how it highlights the severity of effects from going through puberty on a teenager. As someone who still has one foot in the teenage door myself, I really found myself in Natalie.

She had this seemingly unreasonable insecurity of her acne, acne scars and her body and although I know that so many other people are suffering/suffered this thing, it was nice to be in Natalie’s head and know that she also thought the very same things that I always think about. It’s comforting to know that I’m not the only person in the world being mentally scarred ‘just because of acne’. The author also pointed out the way that having acne in the past or now can mess up with your mind. I really appreciate the length this book discussed this stuff because I never see these issues being in other books I had read. Her insecurity aside, Natalie was a very likeable main character. She was smart and sassy, and the fact that she was socially weird made her more relatable. 

One more thing that I love the most about this book was how balanced the familial, friendship, love and self-discovery themes were. All these themes were exactly the same percentage, there wasn’t really a main centre because the book discussed all the themes in the same amount and it’s rare to see this kind of balance in YA contemporary, especially being this short. Something always overshadows something but nothing overshadows anything in this book.

Maybe in another circumstance, I would say that this book was very mediocre and rate it 3.5 minimum or 4 stars maximum but for how much I enjoyed this book and the amount of relatable-ness, I would feel guilty if I give it less than 5 stars. This book is very simple but very unique too and I think that it’s important for all teenagers to read this. I would put this book up there with The Perks of Being a Wallflower in terms of the importance of this book for teenagers.

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