Review: Whatever Life Throws at You

Whatever Life Throws at You by Julie Cross
Release Date: October 7, 2014
Genres: YA contemporary
Rating: 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟

Life loves a good curveball…

Seventeen-year-old Annie Lucas’s life is completely upended the moment her dad returns to the major leagues as the new pitching coach for the Kansas City Royals. Now she’s living in Missouri (too cold), attending an all-girls school (no boys), and navigating the strange world of professional sports. But Annie has dreams of her own—most of which involve placing first at every track meet…and one starring the Royals’ super-hot rookie pitcher.

But nineteen-year-old Jason Brody is completely, utterly, and totally off-limits. Besides, her dad would kill them both several times over. Not to mention Brody has something of a past, and his fan club is filled with C-cupped models, not smart-mouthed high school “brats” who can run the pants off every player on the team. Annie has enough on her plate without taking their friendship to the next level. The last thing she should be doing is falling in love.

But baseball isn’t just a game. It’s life. And sometimes, it can break your heart…

YA contemporary is one of my favorite genres. There are so many hidden gems in here, and they always make my heart hurt and then slowly repair it.

Annie’s dad is the new pitching coach for an MLB team and she finds herself uprooted to Missouri and starting a new school. When she meets the new 19-year-old pitcher, she finds herself infatuated. Except he is 100% off limits.

I loved so much about this book.

  • The characters. Jason was trying to make amends for his past, and he was determined to provide himself a better future through baseball. Annie was just as amazing. She was smart and dedicated, and she had pride in herself and father. I loved that there was actual character development throughout the story.

“Pressure is just that—pressure. It’s all in your head. It has nothing to do with what you can or can’t do.”

  • The romance. There was absolutely no insta-love here. Annie and Jason’s relationship develops super naturally. The chemistry was authentic and the transition from friends to more was perfectly written. Also, the banter!
  • Annie’s relationship with her father. I loooove seeing realistic relationships between parents and their kids. Annie and her dad loved each other so much. Family was very important to Annie, and that’s rare to see.
  • This was more than just a romance. There’s focus on family relationships, as well as Annie trying to make and maintain friendships at her new school. I also loved that baseball had an actual part in this. We got to see how her dad works with Jason on his pitching.

“Life is funny sometimes… the worst possible things can get you to the best possible places. If you just enjoy the game.”

It seems like this author really gets teenagers. Never in the story did I think, “a 17 or 19 year old would never say or do this.” This book was just wonderful. It will make you feel a lot of things and it was impossible to put down.

five stars

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