How to Make a Wish by Ashley Herring Blake

How to Make a Wish

All seventeen year-old Grace Glasser wants is her own life. A normal life in which she sleeps in the same bed for longer than three months and doesn't have to scrounge for spare change to make sure the electric bill is paid. Emotionally trapped by her unreliable mother, Maggie, and the tiny cape on which she lives, she focuses on her best friend, her upcoming audition for...

Title:How to Make a Wish
Author:
Rating:
Edition Language:English
Number of Pages:336 pages

How to Make a Wish Reviews

  • Taryn (sunlitlibrary)

    This was a really emotional, beautiful story about love, loss, grief and family. Grace's relationship with her mother was certainly hard and frustrating to read at time, and for about 80% of this book, I found myself feeling so protective of Grace and wanting to shield her from the hurt I know she'd feel because of her mother. I really found myself understanding her feelings towards the situation between her mother and Eva, and let me tell you, I think she was a hell of a

    This was a really emotional, beautiful story about love, loss, grief and family. Grace's relationship with her mother was certainly hard and frustrating to read at time, and for about 80% of this book, I found myself feeling so protective of Grace and wanting to shield her from the hurt I know she'd feel because of her mother. I really found myself understanding her feelings towards the situation between her mother and Eva, and let me tell you, I think she was a hell of a lot nicer than I would've been in that situation. Grace was such a strong, resilient character who just kept pushing through the hard times and I had a lot of respect for her character.

    I really loved how sweet the romance was. Grace and Eva's banter read so naturally and I found myself rooting for them from their very first meeting on the beach. I loved a lot of the discussions they had; about sexuality, especially bisexuality; but also about race and what it was like for Eva to be biracial. I loved that the girls supported each others interests and didn't push each other too far. We also had an on the page f/f sex scene which I don't recall ever reading in a YA book before. I appreciated not only that it wasn't a fade-out type of scene, but also that whilst progressing further sexually, they made sure they were both comfortable with where they were going. The scene before the sex scene was a very emotional scene so I'm very glad that consent was given on the page.

    One thing I would have liked more from this book is for Grace's relationship with both Luca and Emmy to have been more fleshed out. Their relationship seemed to be more telling than showing- and I didn't like the way Grace treated Luca at times. In saying that, I do understand why she responded the way she did at that the times in which I didn't like the way she treated Luca. Apart from that, I did really like their relationship and wished it had been explored a little more.

    The only other thing I would change is the length of the book. I felt like the ending was a little bit rushed- I think I might have liked an epilogue or something to find out how Grace's audition went, how Grace's mother is doing and how Eva's ballet thing went as well. Nonetheless, I really enjoyed this and thought it was a really sweet f/f romance that I would certainly recommend. This was a really emotional, beautiful story about love, loss, grief and family. Grace's relationship with her mother was certainly hard and frustrating to read at time, and for about 80% of this book, I found myself feeling so protective of Grace and wanting to shield her from the hurt I know she'd feel because of her mother. I really found myself understanding her feelings towards the situation between her mother and Eva, and let me tell you, I think she was a hell of a lot nicer than I would've been in that situation. Grace was such a strong, resilient character who just kept pushing through the hard times and I had a lot of respect for her character.

  • Lola  Reviewer

    3.5 stars.

    It’s very early for me to post my review of this book, seeing that it comes out in May next year, but I couldn’t help but read it the moment I received it. And when I finish a book, I immediately write my review of it.

    So, this book. I enjoyed it a little more than the author’s SUFFER LOVE, which was her debut novel. This new book from her is completely different – one of the differences being it being much more diverse.

    It’s the story of two girls who fall in love with each other at the

    3.5 stars.

    It’s very early for me to post my review of this book, seeing that it comes out in May next year, but I couldn’t help but read it the moment I received it. And when I finish a book, I immediately write my review of it.

    So, this book. I enjoyed it a little more than the author’s SUFFER LOVE, which was her debut novel. This new book from her is completely different – one of the differences being it being much more diverse.

    It’s the story of two girls who fall in love with each other at the right moment. Eva’s mother died, so she needs someone to be there for her. Grace’s mother is unpredictable and very hard at keeping her relationships. Her new conquest? The father of Grace’s ex-boyfriend who humiliated her after she broke up with him.

    I found Grace and Eva’s romance sweet. Unlike it appears to be, HOW TO MAKE A WISH, is not mainly a love story. There is a huge focus on the relationship between Grace and her mother also.

    Eva is a lovely character. I liked her right away. Grace is a strong girl who was forced to grow up too soon, thanks to her mother’s shameful behaviour and her lack of a good mother figure. She’s angry a lot. At her mother, mostly, but also at herself. She feels helpless, because she wants to help her mother but doesn’t know how. If I had to choose, I must say I preferred Eva’s character, because of her sweet nature, but I admired Grace’s strength.

    Strangely, I remember liking this author’s writing a little more in her previous novel. I remember it being more lyrical. Her writing here is good, too, and there truly are some beautiful quotes worth highlighting, but the constant cursing cast a shadow on the writing, or so it seemed.

    I absolutely think this is a book you should read, if you enjoy realistic LGBT books. There are some very adorable scenes. A lot of sadness too. Some characters are surprising – Jay! – and although Grace’s mom is anything but responsible, you can’t help but do your best to understand where she’s coming from, why she is the way she is. It’s clear she loves her daughter, even though her love is imperfect. I kept feeling like Grace had trouble seeing that her mother loves her, which irked me, because I thought Grace was more observant than that.

    She said, towards the END,

    Was her mom included? I had the impression that no, she wasn’t one of those names. I remember her saying something similar earlier in the story, too. It annoyed me, because she literally said that 20 pages before the end. But maybe I'm wrong and her mother's name is one of those names. Let me know what you think if you've read the book.

    Not a perfect book, but an important one nonetheless.

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  • Andrea

    is about two girls. Grace is dealing with her upcoming audition to a music school in New York and the fact that she now lives with her ex-boyfriend. And then there’s Eva, a girl who is struggling with her grief over losing her mom.

    F/f romance is so rare in YA, and to have a book that portrays it so beautifully is such a gift. Also it was extremely refreshing to read an LGBT+ YA book that doesn’t deal with “coming-out.” There was never any worry

    is about two girls. Grace is dealing with her upcoming audition to a music school in New York and the fact that she now lives with her ex-boyfriend. And then there’s Eva, a girl who is struggling with her grief over losing her mom.

    F/f romance is so rare in YA, and to have a book that portrays it so beautifully is such a gift. Also it was extremely refreshing to read an LGBT+ YA book that doesn’t deal with “coming-out.” There was never any worry of anyone finding out about their relationship or if they wouldn’t be accepted by their friends and loved ones. (Honestly though this is so much more than a romance story.) And there’s also a biracial love interest, so..!!!!!

    I loved everything about this book, the characters, the setting, the story. All the characters were so three-dimensional, the MC’s and the supporting ones. This is an extremely character-driven novel, each one complex and well-rounded. So don’t really expect a lot to happen plot wise, as it’s the relationships between all the characters that makes this book so amazing. Not only Grace and Eva (though they were too cute), but also Grace and Luca, Grace and her mom, and much more.

    This book captured my attention from the first chapter. Grace’s story with her mom felt so real. Her anger, sadness, and feelings of helplessness, the way she described how she realized she was bisexual, felt so authentic, honestly it hit a little too close to home. It’s actually kind of creepy how much I related to this. And I know there will be a lot of people out there who will be able to relate to Eva as well.

    I feel like this review is kind of a mess. The only thing that matters is:

    It’s skillfully written, raw, and amazing.

  • Cece (ProblemsOfaBookNerd)

    There are aspects of this book that read like your average summer contemporary book. Not average in terms of quality, but in the vibe and setting and style. This book is summery. There are lighthouses and boat rides on the 4th of July and nighttime parties on the beach. And, of course, we can't forget the love story. These familiar elements of the book really helped me to fall into the world and the story and honestly? Just made me want to fast forward to the summer time.

    BUT let me talk about a

    There are aspects of this book that read like your average summer contemporary book. Not average in terms of quality, but in the vibe and setting and style. This book is summery. There are lighthouses and boat rides on the 4th of July and nighttime parties on the beach. And, of course, we can't forget the love story. These familiar elements of the book really helped me to fall into the world and the story and honestly? Just made me want to fast forward to the summer time.

    BUT let me talk about all the stuff in this book that is beyond the usual YA contemporary and how it did all of those things very right.

    What intrigued me enough about this book that it was one of my most anticipated releases of the year? Well, a f/f romance for one. I'm obviously falling for those constantly. But more than that, the MC is bisexual (#ownvoices) and the love interest is a biracial lesbian. And them falling for each other was just so lovely?? They were snarky and doubtful and tender and I loved them. Grace, the MC, has a couple of really fantastic conversations about bisexuality and what it means to her that I thought were incredibly well done. And honestly, as a f/f romance, there was a lot to like. This hit all my ladies loving ladies notes, and that made my heart glow. Grace and Eva fit in a really fantastic way together and I loved their scenes where they could just flirt and tease and make me grin.

    One of the central parts of this book is the relationship Grace has with her mother. That is, their not-so-great relationship in which Maggie is the one acting like a child and Grace is constantly forced to take responsibility. It is a really heartbreaking relationship to read. It is done in an honest and up-close way that makes it difficult to stomach at times, as you see this person constantly doing exactly what you, as a reader, know will hurt Grace the most. It's hard to read, but it is done incredibly well in terms of exploring an unhealthy parent-child relationship, and in terms of seeing how the child in these situations thinks. The way Grace rationalizes things at times is so frustrating, because you're on the outside as a reader, but also it allows you to see how she has been forced to reach this way of rationalizing.

    There was some stuff here that was a bit tropey for me. Like, the love interest coming in through a window in the middle of the night. Or some of the little conversations that happen between Grace and her best friend, Luca. It only happened occasionally, and really only at the beginning rather than the end, but those moments would frustrate me. Obviously these aren't terrible, but they would pull me out of the story when they happened a bit.

    This was a really lovely contemporary. It hit all the right notes with a romance. It did a lot right in talking about unhealthy parent-child relationships. The external support system Grace had was excellent and I really loved them all. They all felt like real characters that exist out there in the world. And even though we didn't see as much of it, I thought Eva's grief was shown and discussed perfectly. It also leads to her having a whole conversation with Grace about how the ballet world is incredibly white??? Excellent. More of that, please.

    In fact, to summarize my feelings, I want more of all of this.

  • Kaylin

    I just

    this in a few hours and I’m

    impressed.

    I came here for the bi rep and was captivated by this mother/daughter story. Honestly, I wasn't expecting much. Both the cover and the synopsis

    typical summer contemporary.

    And in some ways it was… but it also was

    much more?

    Focusing on Grace’s summer on the Atlantic coast, this story covers her relationship with her

    I just

    this in a few hours and I’m

    impressed.

    I came here for the bi rep and was captivated by this mother/daughter story. Honestly, I wasn't expecting much. Both the cover and the synopsis

    typical summer contemporary.

    And in some ways it was… but it also was

    much more?

    Focusing on Grace’s summer on the Atlantic coast, this story covers her relationship with her immature mother, her friends and the new girl, Eva. Especially when her mother moves them in with her ex-boyfriend’s family.

    I received an ARC of this in exchange for an honest review. Thanks to HMH Books for the opportunity!

    The main character is a bisexual girl, and it’s not

    She shuts down threesome jokes and takes her relationships seriously. It’s honestly so rare to see bisexual representation, especially one done

    Grace doesn’t feel compelled to ‘choose’ or have some crisis of sexuality, she’s secure in her identity and it’s great.

    Not to say there’s no sex, because there is. One scene in particular sets this firmly on the more ‘mature’ side of YA. But it was one of the healthiest depictions of a sex I’ve read about.

    Both characters continually communicate with their partner.

    The love interest is a biracial lesbian who isn’t wholly defined by either of these traits. She was a free-spirit who’d suffered a great loss and I loved her character and the representation.

    While there is a romance (and I really loved the romance) I would argue this story predominantly focused on the relationship between Grace and her mom. And I found it to be extremely well-written.

    Grace’s mother is not a cartoon villain. She’s not vindictive. She doesn’t call her daughter names and swing her fists. She honestly loves her daughter. But she

    abusive. There was such a strong undercurrent about discovering agency and the ability to stand-up for yourself, even with loved ones.

    FRIENDSHIP. YES. F/M friendship

    a forced romance!

    Luca is Grace’s best friend, and doesn't exist just to motivate her. Their friendship was treated seriously and I loved their banter

    Something about this was just

    captivating to me. I don’t know if it was the writing, the characters, or the story itself—but I was completely sucked in. I read this in one sitting, completely immersed and sad when it was over.

    Grace’s mother begins dating Grace’s ex-boyfriend’s father. Which is crazy and totally should have impacted the plot more than it actually did.

    Instead of being treated as real character, Julian instead is set up your stereotypical douchebag ex-boyfriend. He has rare moments of humanity, but his character was never as developed as others.

    There are several elements of this that still match your typical summer contemporary—the beachy location, summer setting and hazy romance. But there’s also a really important and complex discussion of family and friendship here.

  • destiny ☠ howling libraries

    Let me begin by saying that I am a total sucker for diverse reads, but

    those involving queer women. Being a member of the LGBTQ+ community who did not come to accept myself until far later in life than ideal, these coming-out stories resonate ha

    Let me begin by saying that I am a total sucker for diverse reads, but

    those involving queer women. Being a member of the LGBTQ+ community who did not come to accept myself until far later in life than ideal, these coming-out stories resonate hard with me.

    This book perfectly straddles the line between "tough topics" and "fluffy summer read". We get a taste of each, depending on who Grace is currently surrounded by, but it never leans overwhelmingly in either direction. Given that Eva's mother has recently passed, there is even a sense of underlying heaviness in many of the "fluffy" scenes.

    All in all, I would call this a coming-of-age story more than anything: Grace must juggle coming to terms with her own sexuality, accepting her first relationship with another girl, and learning how to navigate the treacherous waters of her relationship with a neglectful and scatterbrained mother who ranges anywhere from merely problematic to downright abusive.

    Grace's life has never been "normal", not since her dad died in Afghanistan during her toddler years. Her mother has never fully recovered from her grief, and so she drags Grace all over the small Cape town they live in, flitting from one place to the next (and one man to the next) as effortlessly as a butterfly. Few things are consistent in Grace's life: her best friend Luca, purple nail polish, and the inability to love anyone - including herself - with as much effort as she must expend just to keep her mother safe.

    In comes Eva, family friend of Luca's mother; a beautiful, biracial dancer whose mother has just passed away, who eats peanut butter fresh from the jar, who lets people see her cry, and most of all, seems to seek something a little bit heavier than friendship with Grace. Can Grace look past the disaster of her home life long enough to allow anyone else in, or is she doomed to repeat the mistakes surrounding her?

    Grace is a delightful narrator. She feels authentically teenaged, sassy and frustrated and moody, but she also has a weight to her soul that ages her tremendously and fits perfectly with the idea of any child forced to grow up too fast. She struggles constantly between wanting to demand that her mother

    , or wanting to protect her at all costs. I think anyone who grew up with problematic family members could relate really well to Grace's conflicts in this aspect.

    Eva is my favorite character in this book, by far. She is the perfect quintessential "quirky teen" who OWNS her race and her sexuality with pride. She offers a role of someone who has seen adversity and overcome it with a well of self-assuredness that I envy, even now. The moments discussing her recently deceased mother made my heart ache for her, but for the most part, she's a pretty constant source of entertainment.

    The biggest reason why I fell so quickly in love with the story and the characters is the bi rep. My god, there were times that Grace was explaining her feelings and I swear, I was teleported back to my own teenaged brain, full of confusion and self-doubt and questions, and all I could think was,

    Grace isn't quite 100% certain of herself, but she's accepted her sexuality enough to not be ashamed, and it was such a refreshing view point.

    The quote I chose for the beginning of this review literally forced me to close the book and just breathe for a few minutes, because it rang so solidly true with me. I found myself thinking, on multiple occasions, that I wondered if Ashley Herring Blake herself is a queer woman, because she

    (spoiler alert: I later found out she's a proud bi woman!). I just don't have enough good things to say about how authentic this representation felt, and I cannot wait for more of her writing, because queer gals NEED material like this.

    I would recommend this all day, every day, to anyone who enjoys a good YA contemporary. If you're a queer woman looking for a character to see yourself in, read this. If you're straight as a ruler and don't understand bisexuality in the slightest, read this. If you're just a human being looking for a good way to spend an afternoon,

    .

  • Romie

    Can someone hand me some tissues? Because wow this book wrecked me.

    I've read this book in 19 hours - and during these 19 hours I slept 7 hours, cooked lunch/dinner/breakfast in this order and ate. Basically I've read this book pretty quickly because I just couldn't put it down. It was nearly impossible to say ‘Now is time to stop.’

    Everything about this book felt

    real it was like someone was driving a knife through my chest. Both Eva and Grace were me, I connected with them. They made me cry,

    Can someone hand me some tissues? Because wow this book wrecked me.

    I've read this book in 19 hours - and during these 19 hours I slept 7 hours, cooked lunch/dinner/breakfast in this order and ate. Basically I've read this book pretty quickly because I just couldn't put it down. It was nearly impossible to say ‘Now is time to stop.’

    Everything about this book felt

    real it was like someone was driving a knife through my chest. Both Eva and Grace were me, I connected with them. They made me cry, laugh, and then cry some more because I could.

    Grace's mom is abusive af without even trying to be. She is the absolute worst. Honestly, having Grace telling herself again and again that things were okay was breaking my heart, because no they weren't.

    That’s the thing. You keep making excuses for your parents because even though you know they don’t deserve it, you love them. You want to keep them safe, make them proud, so you keep trying to excuse their shitty behaviour. Again and again, until you don’t know anymore if what you’re saying is the truth or something you created to keep you sane. It’s hard to let go, because they’re your parents, and you keep hoping they’ll change and love you back.

    Grace kept thinking her mom would change for her, and maybe in the end she did, maybe, but even if Maggie miraculously changes, it will never erased what she forced Grace to endure for 15 years. Never.

    The truth is, Maggie doesn't want a daughter, she wants someone to take care of her and take away all her problems. But it doesn't work like that. A daughter should never have to beg her parents for some love and attention. Never.

    Grace is just so pure. She's bisexual and the way she describes what it meant to her to identify as bisexual made my heart happy, and I was like ‘Honestly same, Grace, same.’ It's hard to find this one character you perfectly see yourself in, but Grace is my character. She deserves the entire world and more. I loved how her best friend Luca was like ‘You're a little baby bisexual’ he didn't make things awkward for her, he just accepted her for who she is, and truly bless him! Bless this sunshine.

    Then we have my precious biracial gay baby Eva. Tbh I love Eva, and I want her to be the mother of my babies. Simple as that.

    She just lost her mom, the one person she knew she could always count on, and she thrown into this family who wants what's best for her but they don't know how to let her breathe.

    Sure I was pissed off when she spent so much time with Maggie, but I don't know if I was angry at her or Grace for not telling her how fucked up her mother is. I know Eva needed someone to talk to, some who could understand her loss, but honey, this person ain't Maggie. Maggie lost her husband and became the shittiest mom you could ever find on this planet. You, you lost a pure angel, and trust me, you don't want to become like Maggie.

    I feel you, Eva, the struggle is real.

    Tbh I loved the relationship between Eva and Grace. It was just . . . easy. Effortlessly. Natural. You take one look at them, and you know they belong together. They deserve each other : someone who loves you unconditionally but is not afraid to tell you the harsh truth when you messed up.

    The thing is, they made sense. There was never a moment I felt like they were weird together. Not one. Even the sex scene wasn't awkward - because yes there is one + masturbation scene, give me a hourrah - like you knew they felt safe with each other, and understood.

    Trigger warning : Grace’s private messages - okay sext messages - with her ex boyfriend were posted on Tumblr by him when she broke up with him. Grace’s was then treated differently by everybody else, they made suggestive comments, but of course nothing happened to Jay - the ex boyfriend.

  • sana  °¤°

    4.5 stars.

    TRIGGER WARNINGS: Parental neglect and verbal abuse

    You guys, I finally found a contemporary that I didn't shred and roast to pieces! And I'm literally so happy right now. This book is a gem. It's so diverse and precious, my god, I can't stop hugging my copy of this book!! It's so beautiful and I have the biggest smile on my face and akshajsdhjd I'm so emotional right now. I fucking binged this in less than 2 hours. And god, I want to read it all over again.

    This book is so much more

    4.5 stars.

    TRIGGER WARNINGS: Parental neglect and verbal abuse

    You guys, I finally found a contemporary that I didn't shred and roast to pieces! And I'm literally so happy right now. This book is a gem. It's so diverse and precious, my god, I can't stop hugging my copy of this book!! It's so beautiful and I have the biggest smile on my face and akshajsdhjd I'm so emotional right now. I fucking binged this in less than 2 hours. And god, I want to read it all over again.

    This book is so much more than a light, fluffy summer read. In fact, it's nothing like that at all. This book *inhales book smell* is about a fucked up family relationship, love and finding the happiness you deserve in the world. It's about

    The main character, Grace is bisexual. She tackles and takes those threesome jokes down so smoothly. She doesn't feel forced to "choose" a specific gender to be with. She doesn't "come out." She does what she wants to and doesn't need to explain or find acceptance about her sexuality from anyone. It is so natural, I needed this!! Grace is such a strong character, I loved this girl.

    The love interest, Eva is a biracial lesbian. She recently lost her mother and is grieving. She's such a sweet, kind, caring and loving person. Ahhh, I literally wish I could hug these two characters, they are so fucking adorable..

    Their romance is so !!! fucking !!!! ADORABLE !!!! I'm literally squealing.

    I loved the M/F

    in this book. A friendship between a boy and girl that is NOT romanticized? This is so rare in YA books. Luca and Grace's friendship is so wonderful. They are so supportive, loving, caring towards each other and THEY LITERALLY JUST HAVE A STRONG FRIENDSHIP THAT IS NOT ROMANTICIZED.

    This book is such an emotional story about a very tough, abusive and neglectful relationship between a mother and daughter. Maggie was a very gross parent who had no care for her daughter's well being. She would move Grace from place to place with new boyfriends and take a kid to bars to rescue the mom when she was being groped?? She always expected everything to be okay for Grace and never cared what happened to her. Maggie did whatever she wanted and expected Grace to be perfectly fine with it and I was just so mad at her. She would talk shit to Grace (i forgot what it was because i have bad memory) and I was so pissed at this freaking woman !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Overall, you guys don't know how bad I

    y'all to read this. Please!!! go read this book, it's a gem.


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