My Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Title: It Sounded Better in My Head
Author: Nina Kenwood
Format: eBook (NetGalley)
Publication Date: April 7, 2020
Categories: Young Adult, Romance, Contemporary
Disclaimer: **I received this book free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.**
When her parents announce their impending divorce, Natalie can’t understand why no one is fighting, or at least mildly upset. Then Zach and Lucy, her two best friends, hook up, leaving her feeling slightly miffed and decidedly awkward. She’d always imagined she would end up with Zach one day―in the version of her life that played out like a TV show, with just the right amount of banter, pining, and meaningful looks. Now everything has changed, and nothing is quite making sense. Until an unexpected romance comes along and shakes things up even further.
Thank you to Flatiron Books and NetGalley for giving me a chance to read this eARC.
It Sounded Good in My Head is a surprising and delightful read that left me smiling. The story is set in Australia and follows Natalie who is full of teenage insecurities and who can blame her? She’s suffered from bad acne in her adolescent years, and it was so bad she was teased relentlessly. Medication has helped her but it’s left her scarred, and so anxious. Thank goodness for her best friends Zach and Lucy, who know the best of her and maybe this someone new who will see past her insecurities and hopefully like her too.
- Natalie’s teenage insecurities are on point. I never suffered from bad acne until after I turned 19, but my sister suffered from it in middle school. It eats away at your confidence, makes you feel horrible and especially in high school where everything seems magnified – it can be awful. Natalie’s fears have made her into an anxious person, especially about her appearance. All the thoughts in her head, I’ve had them – haven’t we all?
- So happy Natalie had two best friends, Zach and Lucy, she could count on. I liked knowing her true thoughts about when said two best friends started dating each other, but the fact they might a cool trio made me happy Natalie had a support group. And I love Zach’s family who treated her like their family also.
- The awkwardness in this book is so funny and cringe-worthy, I felt for Natalie at the first party she attends with Owen and Alex. It was giving me anxiety just reading it because I wanted her to be okay. And all the awkwardness between her and Alex hooking up or trying to get together was so real.
- Natalie’s voice is strong. I got swept up in her thoughts and insecurities. We even get back story on some of her reactions, like the boys who teased her about her pimples. 😒 She tells us how she became so anxious – and we see her try to wade through social situations and a lot of times failing at them. What I love about Natalie is that yes she will flee a situation and break down and cry but that doesn’t stop her from getting up the next day and living her life as best she can with her anxiety. It’s scary to like a boy when you aren’t even sure what is there to like about yourself. Alex was the somewhat non-perfect guy to like because hiding under what she thought was “perfection” was someone as insecure with his life also. We don’t have it together folks! I mean, who really does?
- The story starts off with Natalie’s parents announcing their divorce and though it seems like a big issue, I felt like it faded to the background. Maybe it was how Natalie was coping with the situation though – she does talk more to her parents about it closer to the end of the book but it’s an amicable parting so maybe there was much drama there to begin with.
- Natalie and Alex’s relationship happens pretty quick in the timeline of this book but it’s due to the both of them stumbling around trying to figure what they are doing. It’s not insta-love since she’s known Alex for a long time, but Natalie tries to move the relationship to the next level pretty quick, again, due to insecurities.
I absolutely enjoyed reading this book! Natalie’s insecurities and anxieties are so relatable. I liked watching her go from a girl who seems absolutely terrified to be at a party to the girl telling Alex what she feels and showing him her scars. 👏🏼 I was so proud of her. This is a wonderful debut book that teens will be able to relate to and I look forward to reading more books from this author.