Author: Stephanie Parent
Published: June 4th 2013
Source: Copy given by author for honest review
Genre: New Adult Contemporary
Buy: Amazon ~*~ Barnes & Noble
Add to your Goodreads shelf
Caution: May contain spoilers
Isabelle Andrews isn’t supposed to be here. She isn’t supposed to be a freshman at Hartford Community College, she isn't supposed to be living at home and working at her dad’s failing bakery, and she definitely isn’t supposed to be taking Intro to Electronic Music Production, a class that will get her nowhere toward her goal of an English Lit Ph.D. by age twenty-five. But when her dad’s latest business fiasco eats up her college fund, Hartford Community College is exactly where Isabelle finds herself—and thanks to her late enrollment, she doesn’t even get to choose her classes. Stuck with Electronic Music and way-too-easy English courses, Isabelle is determined to wallow in all the misery she feels entitled to.
But community college brings some unexpected benefits…like the fact that a certain overworked, over-scheduled Electronic Music professor hands over most of his duties to his teaching assistant. His tall, green-eyed, absolutely gorgeous teaching assistant. When TA Evan Strauss discovers Isabelle’s apathy toward electronic music—and, well, all music—he makes it his mission to convert her. The music Evan composes stirs something inside Isabelle, but she can’t get involved—after all, she’ll be transferring out as soon as possible.
Still, no matter how tightly Isabelle holds on to her misery, she finds it slipping away in the wake of all Hartford Community offers: new friendships, a surprisingly cool poetry professor, and most of all, Evan. But Evan’s dream of owning his own music studio is as impractical as Isabelle’s dad’s bakery, and when Evan makes a terrible decision, everything Isabelle has gained threatens to unravel. Soon Isabelle discovers that some of the most important lessons take place outside the classroom…and that in life, as in Evan’s favorite Depeche Mode song, the most precious things can be the hardest to hold on to.
After adoring Stephanie's debut novel, Defy The Stars, I knew I had to read Precious Things. So when she asked me if I was interested in reading it, I JUMPED at the opportunity. And let me tell you, she did not let me down with this one. Plus, I mean, "Precious" by Depeche Mode? I bought that CD when it came out because I loved that song so much. I had to see the tie in with the song.
Isabelle is a person I could completely relate to: the situation she is in, the responsibility she has to undertake and the sacrifices. It's a tough place to be in and even harder to make the most of what you do have because all you can think about is where you would rather be. Isabelle somehow manages to do so with what she has been given, although there are points where she doesn't want to. She becomes friends with Lucy, who is instantly loveable. All I can say (and I know I mentioned this to you, Stephanie), is stick figures. I am still giggling.
Through it all, there is Evan, the teaching assistant for the music class, who seems determined to get to her. His efforts, in person and through email, slowly gain success, although Isabelle is reluctant. The sexual tension between the two of them is noticeable, even outsiders can tell that it's there. And then, they can't hold back from the way they feel any longer. All I can say is holy sexy kiss Batman! I think I read that one a few times over again (I think I'll have to read it again after finishing this review). Despite things seeming to look up, other things dare to fall apart. It's up to Isabelle to figure out what she really wants and needs.
Precious Things is a wonderful story full of growth and growing up. There was a lot of attention given to the secondary characters and the side stories that it made the story a compelling read. Stephanie Parent made the switch from YA to NA almost seamlessly. She was able to make this story about more than just romance, and I like that a lot. I have to say, I don't think I'm going to be able to NOT make the effort to read everything I can by Stephanie, it's just that good.