Review: A Boy Worth Knowing by Jennifer Cosgrove

Ghosts can’t seem to keep their opinions to themselves.

Seventeen-year-old Nate Shaw should know; he’s been talking to them since he was twelve. But they aren’t the only ones making his high school years a living hell. All Nate wants is to keep his secret and keep his head down until he can graduate. That is, until the new boy, James Powell, takes a seat next to him in homeroom. James not only notices him, he manages to work his way into Nate’s life. But James has issues of his own.

Between dead grandmothers and living aunts, Nate has to navigate the fact that he’s falling in love with his only friend, all while getting advice from the most unusual places.

Ghosts, bullies, first love: it’s a lot to deal with when you’re just trying to survive senior year.

Sold, sold, sold by that GORGEOUS cover and the fact that I like me some ghosties in my reading!

My rating for this was hovering between the 3.75 and 4 heart mark, I decided to round it up though because I did enjoy the story. It was a cute YA with a bit of a twist and I think the premise could have  made it a 5 heart read for me, but I felt the narrative needed a little tightening up.

What I liked was the relationship between Nate and James. I love friendships that develop into something more. I love reading about characters who are perhaps a bit different, I like finding out why they don't quite fit into the society created for them by the author. Getting to know characters like these and seeing more of them than their book peers can makes for a great story as far as I'm concerned. Once I'm relating to the character I'm on their side and wanting them to win through. Nate and James both had me rooting for them.

In some ways though, this story felt a bit 'bitty'. There were parts of the plot that needed editing through. One of my notes says why so many movies? Because this duo seemed to watch a lot of films - but they didn't add to or tie into the plot in any way. I have to admit watching a good night of telly is my idea of fun in my old age, but it seems like this young couple of friends can't find anything else to do. It didn't feel ironic or meant though, just a bit unimaginative and lazy on the part of the author. There felt no reason to it other than the MC's had to be doing something...

The other point that felt irrelevant to the story was the whole Nate not living with his mum thing. There seemed no point to it, it added nothing to the story other than a few extra words. I'm going to misquote something I read years ago, I believe it was by Alfred Hitchcock but I could (and am highly likely to) be completely wrong about that. It went something along the lines of, if there is an umbrella in scene 1, it had better have rained by scene 3. Basically, everything added needs to have  a definite reason for being there and I couldn't see the reason for Nate having to live with his aunt.

That said, as I started with, this was an enjoyable read, I just wish it had had one more story edit by the author to tighten it all up a bit. 
A copy of this book was given in exchange for an honest review.
For more information see Goodreads.

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