18 Things by Jamie Ayres

Olga and Conner spend the afternoon of April 1st sailing when a storm suddenly blows in. Conner is struck by lightning and thrown off the boat into the frigid Lake Michigan. He does not survive. Olga is guilt-ridden over not being able to save him. Her counselor suggests she make a bucket list of 18 things to do the year she is 18 years old. She sets off on a year of discovery and growth as she and her friends complete the list. And then a Major Plot Twist is dropped and absolutely everything changes.

Most of the storyline of 18 Things is well done. The Plot Twist kind of kills the whole book, however. It’s ridiculous. The author also lays on the religious sermon pretty thick at that point, too, which just doesn’t go along with the rest of the book very well. The book is also in need of an editor. Tenses occasionally changed inappropriately. Several times helping verbs were missing. Cliches were overused. Similes were also overused. In an attempt to not repeat words too often, the author used synonyms. The problem was sometimes the words used as synonyms didn’t actually mean the same thing (for example, butter and margarine). Most of the story was good enough, however, that the editing problems alone would have only reduced my rating to a 4. The Major Plot Twist was so bad, the ending lowered my rating an additional two stars down to 2.

2 (out of 5) Stars

Books Read in 2015: 126
Pages Read in 2015: 37,104
Read 52 Books in 52 Weeks (more book reviews!)


Filed under Young Adult

3 responses to “18 Things by Jamie Ayres

  1. I’m not going to read this book….I’d just like to know the plot twist. =D
    I’m guessing….Connor survived. Maybe Olga pushed him in. Or something. What would prompt a religious sermon from the author? Something to do with sex? Olga and Connor were naughty and Olga tried to hide it and pushed Connor in?
    Maybe Connor was trying to escape from the mafia? =D Ok, that’s a bit silly.
    Please feel free to email me the twist! =)


      Olga as well as the guy she falls in love with over the course of the year, Nate, are actually both dead (Conner is dead, too, and according to the little preview of the second book in the series, he was sent to “Juvie” instead of hell because he was under 18 and needed to form a relationship with God before he could go to heaven). A week after Conner died, Olga took 20 prescription pain meds and even though she didn’t intend to kill herself she did. Nate was drag racing and he and the kid he was racing both died as well. Olga and Nate meet at the therapist’s office, but it turns out the therapist is really a non-angel person who helps guide people who need after-death purification in order to get to heaven. They were able to go through the purification process rather than go to hell because people prayed for their souls when they died so it’s a sort of purgatory-ish place they ended up in. So none of the stuff that happened in the book really happened at all.

      • ….. oh dear me.
        Well, thank you for the twist! It certainly wasn’t something I was expecting, so that’s a good thing. =)

        Feel free to delete these comments if you need to, to keep it spoiler free. =)

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