Hello, there! I am finally catching up on my February TBR pile – Into the Dim took longer than I thought it would to read – but it was well worth it. So to start off the new schedule, I’ll be reviewing Wild Swans by Jessica Spotswood. This was one of the books sent to me from SourceBooks in exchange for an honest review. The book is set to release about May 3rd of this year. I’m excited to share this one with you, and I hope this gets added to your TBR pile 🙂
Here’s the overview on the jacket:
The summer before Ivy’s senior year is going to be golden; all bonfires, barbeques, and spending time with her best friends. For once, she will just get to be. No summer classes, none of Granddad’s intense expectations to live up to the family name. For generations, the Milbourn women have lead extraordinary lives—and died young and tragically. Granddad calls it a legacy, but Ivy considers it a curse. Why else would her mother have run off and abandoned her as a child?
But when her mother unexpectedly returns home with two young daughters in tow, all of the stories Ivy wove to protect her heart start to unravel. The very people she once trusted now speak in lies. And all of Ivy’s ambition and determination cannot defend her against the secrets of the Milbourn past….
This was so sweet! I was a bit skeptical of this one of all three I received. It seemed a little cliche in the description, but I’m glad it wasn’t.
Throughout the novel Ivy struggles with the weight of expectations not only from her family, but herself, too. I connected well with her on this point. I am a bit of an overachiever, and I set high standards for myself. Nothing disappoints me more than when I fail to rise to the occasion, and I felt like I understood her well.
The writing style was unique. I can’t exactly point to what makes it stand out, but I felt like it was raw and real. It made Ivy and her family something real, even if her situation isn’t the most common.
The premise of the book was interesting. I liked how Ivy’s family was mesmerizing – the Milbourn women entranced me too! It would be wild to be related to someone like her great-grandmother who had won a Pulitzer Prize or her grandmother whose paintings were sold for thousands. I don’t know what I’d do with myself if there was so much weight and legacy behind my name. It’s understandable why Ivy feels the need to live up to the expectations of her grandfather and the town she lives in.
Ivy’s mom is a bit nutty. I liked how much of an enigma she was though. Spotswood did well writing her character because although Ivy’s mom was out there I felt I could understand her, too. She was human, and through Ivy I could see her develop in a way only a daughter could see. I felt for Ivy when her mom mistreated her. I like that Ivy found a backbone and eventually stood up to her. It’s always refreshing to me when female characters find themselves and stand up for who they are.
The relationship between Ivy and her sisters was nice to see develop. I imagine it’s hard to get along with a stranger you’re told is related to you. I have three sisters and I love them all. We drive each other bonkers sometimes, but we get along pretty well. It’s hard for girls to get along in general, and this must have been especially difficult.
Overall, I gave this a 4/5 stars on Goodreads. It was enjoyable and the ending was very bittersweet. Definitely one perfect for reading on the beach! I hope this review has helped. Let me know your thoughts in the comments.