I’m so excited to be posting this!! I love following people’s projects from start to finish. Seeing the progress all the way through to a finished product is amazing, and that’s what I’ve done with The Color Project by Sierra Abrams. I’ve followed Sierra on Twitter for ages now, and after watching her progress as she wrote her book, she was lovely enough to give me a review copy! I wanted to get my hands on one for ages, so I was so happy when I actually did!
Bernice Aurora Wescott has one thing she doesn’t want anyone to know: her name. That is, until Bee meets Levi, the local golden boy who runs a charity organization called The Color Project.
Levi is not at all shy about attempting to guess Bee’s real name; his persistence is one of the many reasons why Bee falls for him. But while Levi is everything she never knew she needed, giving up her name would feel like a stamp on forever. And that terrifies her.
When unexpected news of an illness in the family drains Bee’s summer of everything bright, she is pushed to the breaking point. Losing herself in The Color Project—a world of weddings, funerals, cancer patients, and hopeful families that the charity funds—is no longer enough. Bee must hold up the weight of her family, but to do that, she needs Levi. She’ll have to give up her name and let him in completely or lose the best thing that’s ever happened to her.
For fans of Stephanie Perkins and Morgan Matson, THE COLOR PROJECT is a story about the three great loves of life—family, friendship, and romance—and the bonds that withstand tragedy.
The Color Project by Sierra Abrams – Review
One big thing that I consider when choosing books to read and review is that I hate gushy romance. I am as far from a romance lover as Australia is from Britain. When there are romantic relationships in books, especially contemporary YA, I absolutely hate it when they speak to each other in a way that no teenager on earth would ever speak. (cough The Fault in Our Stars cough) So, something really needs to surprise me for me to like it if I know there will be romance.
I knew that The Color Project would have romantic elements, so I went in with caution – and I was so happy that it was normal romance! It wasn’t over the top or disgustingly cheesy, and I actually really loved it. There was no gushy love at first sight, and their whole relationship built up and developed so well (and realistically). If I had a ‘book boyfriends’ list, Levi would definitely be on it. He’s adorable, always wears colourful sweaters, and in my mind, would most definitely be a Hufflepuff. He cares so much about Bee without being smarmy or gross. Their whole relationship is something I can actually imagine developing in real life, unlike some horribly cheesy ones I see in some books.
The book had other characters that I loved too. Obviously I loved Bee and Levi, but I was happy that they weren’t the only focus of the whole book. Gretchen, Bee’s best friend, was amazing (I loved that after every conversation they had, whether it was in person or on the phone, they’d end it with “I think you’re crap.”) Bee’s siblings were great, too – her sisters were so entertaining (and very realistic teenagers who watched films a lot and danced around to the Hamilton soundtrack). The relationship between Bee and her brother Tom was adorable, and it added a whole new level of depth to learn about his relationships and his work friends. Bee’s whole family, including her parents, have such a close bond that when bad things happened to them, I wanted to sob and give them all huge hugs.
By ‘bad things happening’, let’s talk about the twist. (No spoilers, don’t worry!) For a while, Bee kept coming home to her parents arguing and crying. Her family have always been incredibly close and she explains that her parents have a love that she could only wish for, so she was dreading going home to see them upset. Her mind (and mine) jumped straight to the conclusion of divorce, but the actual truth was so much worse. If you know me you’ll know that I’m an emotional robot, but this made me CRY. (Well, almost.) I’ve seen a couple of people saying that they expected it, but I definitely didn’t! It was horrible. The thing that happened put Bee and Levi’s relationship on the line, and I was PANICKING. They were so perfect that I didn’t want them to be ruined. Not two bad things in one go! I could almost feel Bee’s pain as one bad thing happened after the other.
This made the ending so amazing. It was a lovely, bittersweet ending that could have been SO cheesy but wasn’t. It wrapped up the whole story amazingly, and I finished the book without a shred of disappointment. Gahhhh, the whole book was SO GOOD!
Sierra, for a debut novel, you should be so proud. You’ve written a gem of a book and I can’t wait for it to be released in the UK so I can buy it and have the BEAUTIFUL cover on my bookshelf! Thank you for giving me the chance to read your heartbreaking but lovely story. <3
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