Title: The Loose Ends List
Author: Carrie Firestone
Genre & Age Group: Contemporary, young adult
It’s a summer for first love, last wishes, and letting go.
Maddie has big plans to spend the last months before college tying up high school “loose ends” alongside her best friends. Then her beloved grandmother drops two bombshells: (1) Gram is dying. (2) She’s taking her entire family on a round-the-world cruise of dreams come true—but at the end, Gram won’t be returning home.
With a promise to live in the now without regrets, Maddie boards the Wishwell determined to make every moment count. She finds new friends in her fellow Wishwellians, takes advantage of the trip’s many luxuries, gets even closer to her quirky family, and falls for painfully gorgeous Enzo. But despite the copious laughter, headiness of first love, and wonder of the glamorous destinations, Maddie knows she is on the brink of losing Gram, and she struggles to find the strength to let go in a whirlwind summer shaped by love, grief, and laughter.
Source: School library
How I Found Out About It: Goodreads/Blogging
The Loose Ends List had been under my radar for a very long time before I got around to reading it. It had such an intriguing concept, and thus I just couldn’t wait to dive in and be amazed!
This book turned out to be a very solid 4 star read for me. I loved most things about it, but there were definitely still some flaws that held me back from giving it a full star rating.
For a quick summary, this book revolves around a teenage girl named Maddie, whose grandmother has terminal cancer and wants to spend her last moments cruising around the world with her family. On the ship, Maddie connects with many new friends as well as a new guy named Enzo, but in the end, will this all be enough to keep her happy when she is just about to lose her grandmother?
The characters in this book were pure gold, and I absolutely loved the bonds between main character Maddie and everyone else on the ship! Maddie was a bit whiny and selfish at first, I’ll definitely give you that, but by the end of the story, I was able to watch her grow immensely into a happier, more thankful character. I also really loved Gram and how much of an awesome grandmother she was- I just adored her wit and how she kept upbeat and bubbly during a time of extreme pain and sorrow! Oh, and also… ENZO!!!😍😍
If you are looking for a book with strong family ties, The Loose Ends List is for you. In the book, Maddie did not just create stronger bonds with her family, but she also bonded with all the other people on the ship going through the same situation as she was. The whole ship was basically a family on its own by the end, and I got quite emotional when everyone had to say goodbye to each other!
Plot-wise, the super unique premise was executed amazingly, but I found some of the events to be quite a bit unrealistic. Yeah, I know, this book is fiction so it can obviously be anything the author wants it to be, but for a contemporary story, things moved way faster than they would in real life.
Overall, I found this book pulling on my heartstrings many times while reading, and I know it is one that I certainly won’t forget. If those *few* flaws were fixed, then it would have absolutely been a 5 star read in my book. Anyway, if you’re looking for a heartwarming, witty book about family ties and grief, your life will be full of loose ends until you give this a read! Seriously, please read it. It’s unforgettable.❤️