Review: Broken Hearts, Fences and Other Things to Mend (Broken Hearts & Revenge #1) by Katie Finn

Book Title:  Broken Hearts, Fences and Other Things to Mend
Author: Katie Finn
Published Date: May 13th, 2014
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Genre: YA Contemporary
Series: Book One in Broken Hearts & Revenge trilogy
Book Link: Goodreads
Synopsis from Goodreads:
Hot sun. Blue waves. New romances. Old secrets.

Gemma had her summer all planned out, but it takes a sharp turn when she gets dumped and finds herself back in the Hamptons after a five-year absence.

Being there puts her at risk of bumping into Hallie, her former best friends (that is, before Gemma ruined her life). But people don’t hold grudges forever. Do they?

Gemma intends on making amends, but a small case of mistaken identity causes the people she knew years ago—including Hallie and her dreamy brother, Josh—to believe she’s someone else. As though the summer wasn’t complicated enough already.

Filled with summer sun, boys, and friendships gone sour, Katie Finn’s first novel in the Broken Hearts and Revenge series sizzles and delights.

Disclaimer: I received this book from Macmillan via NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.

Okay, so I have a lot of feelings about this book. Mostly good feelings as I really did enjoy the book a lot. Gemma gets dumped by the school’s do-gooder right off the bat. I detested Teddy. I really could not understand how Gemma could have gotten so wrapped up in him that she had forgotten all of her own dreams, goals, interests et cetera.

Suddenly, newly single Gemma is heading out to the Hamptons to stay with her father for the summer. She’s scared she’s going to run into the girl whose life she made hell 5 years ago. She knows she has a lot to atone for and she knows that she was in the wrong, but she wants to make it right.

A lot of people had varying opinions on both Gemma and Hallie and I am no exception. I’m one of the people who actually liked Gemma more than Hallie. I thought Hallie had held onto a grudge for far too long. I mean come ON, it’s been 5 years for goodness sakes! Time to move on Hallie and stop punishing people for mistakes they made in their past. 

I know bullying is not cool, of course I do. I was bullied for many years as a teenager, but even I had to say enough was enough and it infuriated me that Hallie was still holding a grudge. Eleven year olds make mistakes. So I really didn’t have any sympathy for Hallie because I felt she needed to let it go and I was aggravated that she hadn’t yet. 

Gemma! Oh my goodness, sometimes I wanted to slap her, but usually, I just wanted to hug her. She was putting so much pressure on herself to fix things with Hallie. That pressure sometimes made her do stupid things, but she always had one goal in mind and that was, to fix things with Hallie. Should she have just apologized from the get go? Yeah probably, but she didn’t. I think Gemma still carried around a lot of guilt from what she did to Hallie 5 years ago and like with Hallie, I wanted Gemma to let it go. To forgive herself. I think the idea of forgiving herself was foreign and not something she was really familiar with.

I didn’t love the romance between Josh & Gemma. He was cute, sweet and an all around gentleman, but I didn’t feel the spark between him and Gemma which really bummed me out. Even their first kiss didn’t do anything for me. I am hoping for more character development for Josh in book 2.

Overall, this book was great and I really liked it a lot. I don’t know how I am going to be able to wait for the next book, but wait I must. I am giving this book 4 stars. It was the perfect summery, beachy read and it was very drama filled which was exactly what I was looking for.