Hachette Book Group
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The Boy Who Steals Houses Kindle Edition
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If this moving novel doesn't leave you in floods of tears you may not have a heart.―Claire Hennessey, The Irish Times
I'm 100% positive I'm never going to get over this book.―A Whisper of Ink - blog --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.
About the Author
- File Size : 2088 KB
- Publication Date : April 4, 2019
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Publisher : Orchard Books (April 4, 2019)
- Print Length : 226 pages
- ASIN : B07H7GNCD4
- Lending : Not Enabled
- Language: : English
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Enhanced Typesetting : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Best Sellers Rank: #277,070 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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The author, C.G. Drews is a sweetheart and I've read her blogs and I follow her on Instagram where she takes breathtaking bookish photos. I do really like her as a person which is why this rating hurts me a bit but I suppose no matter who you like, they don't always match your style.
The overall story was indeed, very cute. But so many things clouded this from being great.
First of all, the writing style. Oh my god, the sentence structure, language choices, the constant emphasizing of things with italics, all of it was a bit too much for me. I read this with my boyfriend and honestly, that's the only reason why I even finished this book. If I had been reading on my own I would have stopped after chapter one.
The characters are very boring. There are too many characters for one, and see many characters don't bother me as long as there is SOMETHING to them. Not just people standing in the background doing nothing...ever... but are always mentioned. The characters it did focus on were just... flat. Like everything else about this. I didn't have a connection to any of them and didn't really care about them. The situations were sad but if I had been more attached to the characters I would have cried for sure. But alas...this was not the case. I didn't feel like they had any depth to them at all so that's unfortunate.
The atmosphere and world-building are meh. Not much to build as it takes place in normal everyday life but as far as descriptions of things around them and setting, it wasn't very good. There were very little descriptions but very simple and seemed a little lazy to me.
The writing style was very childish (Just like the characters which I guess makes sense because they ARE children) and I knew this before going into it. Even so, I didn't expect it to be that bad. But yikes. I really feel like it was written by a child when I read it. I even spoke to my boyfriend about how this feels like the writing I did when I was 8 years old and wrote a story about my sister being born and brought home. Ouch.
The plot was very flat as well, predictable in so many aspects. No plot twists at all. And only one suspenseful scene in my opinion.
There are so many things that don't make sense with this story. Like how the first pages are talking about how good Sam is at breaking in and this is what he does best but yet...the boy sucks. He's not good at this at all. At all. He always has issues with locks, he doesn't examine the houses well before he just jumps into them...he stays in a house while people are there... FOR DAYS at a time knowing it's an idiotic choice and yet oh well. Let's just say Sam gets on my nerves and he's not very bright. It also didn't make sense to me how he's constantly mad at people for being mean to Avery and yet he is always making comments to himself about how he shouldn't be mean but then says something mean. Every. Single. Time.
And let's not even get into how the big family is way too nice. It's really lovely that these people are so great but nobody is perfect and this family is written way too perfect aside from the missing mother. But come on. The fights are the bare minimum, last a whole 5 minutes if that and then everything is happy and great again. A little irritating and very unbelievable. The family just seems like a constant ball of sunshine even despite the small bickers. You try living with a family that big and see if it's that tame. LOL
So overall, I didn't enjoy this book much at all. The only part I did enjoy was the last 6 chapters. That's about it. Because they seemed the most normal and made the most sense. Very disappointing. But hey, at least the cover is nice.
Now that's out of the way, let's talk about why I ADORE THIS BOOK SO STINKIN' MUCH. First of all, C.G. Drews has SUCH a way of writing emotions. It's so very raw that you can't help but feel alongside the characters. I adore our main characters, Sam & Avery, and will PROTECT THEM WITH EVERYTHING I HAVE. Probably, I should protect them from their author because, wow, does Cait put her characters through the wringer.
Not only do I love Sam and Avery, but the De Lainey's are also a fantastic bunch. Moxie is, of course, great. She's a girl with a very big, distinct personality, who likes unique fashion and piling a bunch of stuff on her waffles, and she takes crap from absolutely no one. But Mr. De Lainey is such an underrated character. He has an actual heart of gold, I'm pretty sure.
All in all, one of my favorite books of the year. Seriously, it's so good. It made me smile, made me grin, made me cry, aka the makings of an amazing book.
Note: There are some trigger warnings associated with this one, so I'd recommend looking into those if you're concerned about that.
Sam is a little ball of stress who just wants a home and a family and just to take care of Avery. I loved the positive Autism rep in the book, especially since I work a lot with kids with Autsim.
The DeLainey's were awesome, and as someone who comes from large family (7 siblings), the accuracy of the constant chaos and sibling snark and trolling of each other while defending each other was epic.
The themes of finding acceptance and a place really hit home for me. The plot kept me turning the pages and read the book in a day. The POV style takes some getting used to since it's not one I read a lot in, but it works so well with the story! Highly recommend!
I love how C.G.Drews writes her characters.
While I love Sam and Avery with all my heart, I also wanted to smack them with a heavy book most times. I only wish the best for Sam and SERIOUSLY HE DESERVES BETTER. I love Moxie and her family with all my heart. Vin can go die in a hole.
The characters were very likable and the story in general was heartwarming AND heartbreaking.
My soul hurts.
I will take this book to my grave.
My tombstone will read “this is C.G.Drew’s fault.” Because I love this book so so so much and I feel the overwhelming urge to read more, and it kills me.
So am I gonna try to get her other book? Absolutely. Will it kill me too? Counting on it. I was reading this book slowly because I KNEW I couldn’t deal with it ending. I didn’t want it to end. Sadly, as all good books do, it did end. I’m spiteful.
All in all, after it wrecked me and left me to die, I give it 10/10, 5 stars, do indeed recommend.
Top reviews from other countries
CG Drews once again demonstrates her ability to craft the most astounding characters and weave the most heart wrenching narratives. The Lou brothers are masterfully written: all fear and rage and brotherly love and the relationship between them is portrayed with such raw honesty with all the sibling frustration and affection. The De Lainey family is just that most fabulous ball of waffle fuelled chaos and I adore every single one of them. I LOVED the big family dynamic: the teasing, the sibling rivalry, the anger and frustration and the fierce love is all just perfect.
I absolutely adored everything about this story: the range of characters and relationships, the dual timeline narrative, the anxiety and autism rep, the unflinching portrayal of darker themes, the friendships, the family, the romance - just...everything. A complete triumph. Read it with a box of tissues.
I think it would be grossly underestimating the little book by describing it simply as a contemporary YA romance.
Full disclosure: I had to stop reading at one point because I was crying so much my glasses fogged. So yea I adored this book even though it made me cry.
I’m really into reading about sibling relationships right now, possibly because it’s a major theme in my own writing but I think Cait has surpassed herself this time.
I really liked how she managed to balance a very understanding and respectful portrayal of autism with the reality of having a sibling – of growing up knowing they are different but being willing to fight for them because they’re your sibling and that’s what you do. I read somewhere that this is an #ownvoices rep for autism and anxiety and I can get that.
Sam is in one word, adorable. While I did fall in love with him for his unwavering support and care (and fear for) his brother I also could identify with him through his need of finding safety – of finding a home that fits him – and he fits into perfectly.
I think the danger would be that the story would focus too heavily on Avery, and Sam’s love and care for him – this is an #ownvoices story about autism but it’s made clear that it’s not only about autism. It also deals so well with the post traumatic effects of growing up in both a physically and emotionally abusive household for Sam. Is it a nervous tic that makes him steal houses – or the keys at least – or is it his way of coping with his isolated and troublesome world?
Of course, there are romantic elements – Sam falls for Moxie. In a way that only a scared, abandoned boy can – by falling in love with her family first. But romance aside (because really, would the book fail if it didn’t have the romantic relationship between Sam and Moxie? I don’t think so) this is a book about falling in love with safety; with a chance for a family – however patchwork and broken it might be.
You see, I could probably keep going on but there are only so many ways I can say that I adored this book. While both are standalone this and A Thousand Perfect Notes fit each other perfectly – from having a male POV to dealing with various forms of love, abuse, anger and hope. I can’t wait to read more of Cait’s stuff!