Monday, March 11, 2013

Book Review: Chasing Jupiter by Rachel Coker

Today I have the pleasure of being involved in a blog tour to review Rachel Coker's newest book, Chasing Jupiter. *I was given this book through Zondervan and Team Novel Teen in exchange for an honest review.

Back Cover: Scarlett Blaine’s life in 1960s Georgia isn’t always easy, especially given her parents’ financial struggles and the fights surrounding her sister Juli’s hippie lifestyle. Then there’s her brother, Cliff. While Scarlett loves him more than anything, there’s no denying his unique behavior leaves Cliff misunderstood and left out. So when he wishes for a rocket to Jupiter, Scarlett agrees to make it happen, no matter how crazy the idea might be. Raising the rocket money means baking pies, and the farmer’s son, Frank, agrees to provide the peaches if Scarlett will help him talk to Juli. The problem is, Scarlett really enjoys her time with Frank, and finds herself wondering if, someday, they could be more than friends. Just as she thinks everything might be going her way, Cliff suffers an accident that not only affects the rocket plans, but shakes Scarlett’s view of God. As the summer comes to an end, Scarlett must find a way to regain what she’s lost, but also fulfill a promise to launch her brother’s dream.

Here's a neat video where Rachel talks about how she got the idea for this story.

 And here's the review. I really really liked Chasing Jupiter. I hadn't read too far, when I decided Miss Coker's writing had improved even since Interrupted.  I liked Interrupted very much, but I loved Chasing Jupiter.

 This book is in my opinion, beautiful, tragic, heartrending, funny, and touching. Too many adjectives? But really. This book affected me so much that at times I laughed out loud, and at others I was sobbing into my pillow. So maybe it had something to do with finishing it at 3 AM, but... It left a big hole in my heart. I didn't want the story to finish, and certain plot points tore me up. (No spoilers here.)

 Another thing I really liked about this story was the character development. Each character in the story, no matter if they were main cast, supporting or whatever were so unique with their personalities, and how they were. Cliff was sweet, and different, and Frank's mom, who you only see for a few scenes was hilarious- she loved to do crazy dances. I like that in a story. It's as if, if you lifted the top part of this book, and searched into each character you could find a back story for every person written about. 

 I felt this book was very deeply written, especially Rachel Coker, who has a talent beyond her years in the way she ca write emotions, and people. Frank sounded like the sweetest guy. Maybe he isn't Sam Carrol, but he's great in his own way. ;) Some people call this a feel good book, but I'd say there's a lot to it. I didn't just "feel good" about it. In fact, sometimes I felt a little bad. (Remember, I was sobbing.) But that's life. And it's nice to read a real story that actually could have happened. 

 So I give Chasing Jupiter five stars. It's a story that really affected me. A story I really love, and will read again. And it's going on my favorites.

You can get the book here:

 Thanks for reading!

~ a rambling author


HbroadwayphanN said...

Thanks for the review! Chasing Jupiter is one of my very long to-read list. ;)

Carol Gehringer said...

Good review -- I enjoyed the book as well. Wonder how long we have to wait for her next book?

Bethany said...

Broadway: ;) It's really really good!

Carol: Hopefully not too long!!!

Rachel said...

I felt the same way while reading it. It had me laughing and crying. Great review.

Bethany said...

Rachel, I know right? Very touching book.

Jill Williamson said...

Love it when a book keeps you up late. Great review!

Rachelle Rea said...

"Deeply written" is a great way to describe it! :)