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"Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress"
Is the world really falling apart? Is the ideal of progress obsolete? Cognitive scientist and public intellectual Steven Pinker urges us to step back from the gory headlines and prophecies of doom, and instead, follow the data: In seventy-five jaw-dropping graphs, Pinker shows that life, health, prosperity, safety, peace, knowledge, and happiness are on the rise. Learn more
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The story of Leona and Johnny unfolds inside summer vacation, bring together childhood friends who went their separate ways to attend different universities. It’s a beautiful beach vacation with great waves and awesome surfers.
Johnny’s hidden love unfolds. Leona is shocked to discover he’s always loved her. With a controlling mother and aunt, Leona could never explore her feelings especially if directed toward a boy. Growing up under such an environment, Leona doesn’t know how to act toward Johnny when he shows her his naked heart.
When Leona’s commandeering mother orders her home, she runs. The drift this action creates is almost irreparable. Thanks to the advice of the good friends surrounding Leona and Johnny the relationship is saved.
Leona, although slowly, grows out of the childish stubbornness that almost destroys her chance of happiness with Johnny. The character develops from a childish almost annoying individual to a likable young woman. The author grows Leona’s character through the display of tit for tat fights between her and her best friend and the almost brutal and bratty out bursts between Johnny and Leona. The main character blossoms into full bloom when she returns to the beach house after running home because of her mother’s summons. She returns a woman ready to love.
Johnny is the emotional grown up while kids. In love with Leona since childhood, he quietly watched over her and protected her as much as he could. Now a man with the need to be loved, he lashes out at Leona’s initial indifference creating a rift threatening to keep them apart forever. Johnny temporarily regresses into a bratty surfer who demands Leona’s love even though he knows she needs coaxing and kindness to bring her out of the tower her mother and aunt built around the girl.
It’s easy to accept Leona’s character because she grows and matures into a sensible young woman. Johnny is a bit hard to swallow, going from a mature boy to a bratty young man, throwing temper tantrums.
Two minor character that struck me and made me fall in love with them were Alastair and Hope, a cute couple, playing significant roles in the life of Leona and at the same time have their own little romance going. The two are the first of the friendship group to get engaged. Each has a different role in the life of the main character and present two very unique and appealing personalities. Alastair is the glue that helps keep the two heroes together.
The chemistry between Johnny and Leona will keep you reading. The over all story enjoyable and pleasant. I found the book entertaining and hard to put down. A definite must read. Job well done Ms. Coady.
There is an entire cast of characters adding to the fun. I would had to admit that sometimes it was confusing to know just which character was talking or what was going on at times, which could pull me from the story. That said, I read the entire thing in a morning and enjoyed it through to the conclusion.
I rooted for Leo and Johnny, and the ending was great with how things came together. There are a lot more characters to explore, and the author's note teased about another book about different characters. Should be interesting.