Friday, June 8, 2018

[Blog Tour] SAVE THE DATE by Morgan Matson - Review + Written Piece


Source: Received an ARC from Simon & Schuster Canada to participate in the
blog tour and give my honest review.
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Release Date: June 5, 2018
Number of Pages: 432 (Hardcover)

DESCRIPTION

Charlie Grant’s older sister is getting married this weekend at their family home, and Charlie can’t wait—for the first time in years, all four of her older siblings will be under one roof. Charlie is desperate for one last perfect weekend, before the house is sold and everything changes. The house will be filled with jokes and games and laughs again. Making decisions about things like what college to attend and reuniting with longstanding crush Jesse Foster—all that can wait. She wants to focus on making the weekend perfect.

The only problem? The weekend is shaping up to be an absolute disaster.

There’s the unexpected dog with a penchant for howling, house alarm that won’t stop going off, and a papergirl with a grudge.

There are the relatives who aren’t speaking, the (awful) girl her favorite brother brought home unannounced, and a missing tuxedo.

Not to mention the neighbor who seems to be bent on sabotage and a storm that is bent on drenching everything. The justice of the peace is missing. The band will only play covers. The guests are all crazy. And the wedding planner’s nephew is unexpectedly, distractingly…cute.

Over the course of three ridiculously chaotic days, Charlie will learn more than she ever expected about the family she thought she knew by heart. And she’ll realize that sometimes, trying to keep everything like it was in the past means missing out on the future.
G E T   Y O U R   C O P Y   N O W !
Amazon US | Amazon Canada | Indigo | B&N | Kobo


REVIEW

I've been a huge fan of Morgan Matson ever since I stumbled upon a copy of Amy & Roger's Epic Detour in the library during my first year of University. Amy & Roger hooked me on Morgan's writing, and I've eagerly picked up every book that she's written ever since! Needless to say, as soon as I heard about Save the Date, I was super excited! It immediately reminded me of Father of the Bride, a favourite movie of mine growing up, and it was from Morgan Matson, so double yay!

Unsurprisingly, as soon as I started Save the Date, I didn't want to put it down! I was pulled in right from the first chapter. All of the characters were so vibrant and well defined, especially Charlie's siblings and parents! I absolutely adored Charlie, and I loved every single moment with her family. I loved how we clearly got to see her relationship with each of her siblings, too...and I really loved how different they were! I grew up with one brother, so big families with a bunch of siblings have always sort of fascinated me...and I loved getting to see Charlie's! I loved how each of the siblings had different ways that they connected with each other...and I loved how they had so many shared jokes, games, and memories. It actually made it feel like you were a Grant right alongside Charlie! I loved all of the siblings, but I definitely had a soft spot for JJ and Danny! JJ constantly had me laughing, and I think I loved Danny and Charlie's relationship the best!

In Morgan's previous books the romance has always been one of my favourite elements, and I did love the little romantic elements that were in Save the Date, but I definitely loved the family parts even more. Partly because the romance isn't really as big in this book as her previous ones, but for the most part it was because this book was so centred around Charlie and her family. It really did remind me of Father of the Bride that way. There were so many unexpected roadblocks, and I loved seeing the family come together and tackle them all.

I always love that Morgan's books have so many layers, and Save the Date is no exception. Even though it mostly only takes part over the span of three days, so much happens for Charlie, and I loved seeing how all of the elements that were changing in her life helped her evolve over such a small span of time. I ended up reading the book over the span of a few days and it made the story flow in a really organic way, and I loved that! I also cannot finish this review without mentioning Waffles, the aforementioned unexpected dog from the description. I'm a sucker for a dog in a story, and Waffles was adorable! The entire book was adorable. It had me laughing, smiling, and it even had me crying.

Overall, I absolutely loved Save the Date! It was a wonderful story that was extremely funny and gave me all the feels! I think anyone who already loves Morgan Matson will be a fan, and I thhink it'd be perfect for any readers looking for a family-centric young adult novel! If you're like me and you absolutely loved movies like Father of the Bride growing up, I'm also pretty sure that you're going to absolutely love Save the Date, too! 


WRITTEN PIECE

FINDING INSPIRATION & POP CULTURE
I asked Morgan, "Where do you find inspiration for your novels? Does popular culture come into play, or do you find inspiration within pop culture?"

And here was her fabulous response:
The inspiration for my novels always seems to come from a different place with each one – and usually when it’s least expected or convenient.  The kernel of the idea for Save the Date actually did come from a place of pop culture, as I was thinking a lot about the newspaper comics I’d grown up reading, like FoxTrot, Zits, and For Better or For Worse.  I was thinking about what it would be like to have grown up seeing your life transformed into a comic strip, and the idea flowed from there – the idea of a big family, one big event, and everyone returning home for it.

Pop culture plays more of a part in Save the Date than in any of my previous books.  The idea of a big, messy family wedding where things go wrong is one of my favorite movie genres, and I love films like Father of the Bride, Sixteen Candles, The Philadelphia Story/ High Society, and Rachel Getting Married. I definitely rewatched these movies – and a number of other screwball comedy films – as I prepared to start writing Save the Date. I wanted it to have that same fun, madcap feel, but grounded by real characters, emotions, and change.

The inspirations for my other novels have come from a variety of places, and never the same one twice. I got the idea for The Unexpected Everything when I was on book tour in Washington, DC, and started thinking about what it must be like to grow up in the shadow of politics, and always thinking about political ramifications – and the idea of Andie, a Congressman’s daughter, began to emerge.  And I got the idea for my next book after seeing a photograph on a wall during a school visit. So you never know where inspiration is going to come from.  After five books, I try and be open to the fact that it can come from anywhere – and will pop up when you least expect it to!

ABOUT MORGAN MATSON

Morgan Matson was born in New York City and grew up there and in Greenwich, Connecticut. She attended Occidental College as a theater major, but halfway through, switched her focus to writing and never looked back. She received an MFA in Writing for Children from the New School, and then a second MFA in Screenwriting from USC.

She is the New York Times bestselling author of five books, all published by Simon & Schuster.

She currently lives in Los Angeles with her rescue terrier, Murphy, in a house with blue floors that’s overflowing with books.

Connect with Morgan:
Twitter | Instagram | Spotify | Website


I think that Morgan managed to capture the fun, madcap feel of the messy family wedding and screwball comedies that she mentioned in her written piece, and I definitely loved getting some insight into where he inspiration comes from! :)

What did you think of Morgan's written piece?
If you've already read Save the Date, do you think Morgan captured the same essence of those films?
If you haven't read it yet, is it on your to-read list?

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