Reading Roundup: “Take What You Can” by Heather Garvin

It’s summer in Florida.  The temperatures are sweltering.  A group of friends attend a bonfire party at the beach.  Each have different interests at the party, and Paige finds herself sitting by the fire alone.  It is this moment that changes her life. 

“Take What You Can” is the debut novel from Heather Garvin.  Heather wrote the manuscript while she was still in high school.  Recently, I was given the opportunity to interview Heather and she was amazing to work with. 

Now, about the book.  As mentioned above, the setting is a small town in Florida, about 45 minutes form the Beach.  Paige, our main character, lives there with her father.  His work hours leave her with plenty of free time to hang out with friends. 

While at a party, Paige meets Frederick.  He is mysterious, and Paige finds herself drawn to him, despite the warnings from her friend Josh.  As Paige gets to know Frederick, she finds herself in the center of a life that she wasn’t prepared for.  However, grit and determination help her to do things she never thought she could do.

“Take What You Can” is a young adult novel.  The sentence structure is varied, and the plot is easy to follow along with.  Heather Garvin is able to describe elements in the story in such a way that the reader can visualize the setting, and actions of the characters, without feeling overwhelmed with too many details.

My favorite character is the story is Melissa, a friend of Frederick.  She is spunky, strong, and you never have to guess what she is thinking.  She doesn’t care to let her opinion known and does not hide her dislike of Paige.

My least favorite character is Luke.  While part of him is endearing, at first, his actions leave me with a true hatred of him.  I can’t talk anymore about him without giving away spoilers. 

There are two characters that I feel showed growth, was Frederick.  Once closed off, Frederick opened profoundly to Paige.  Some of out necessity, some out of trust.  Paige showed the most change, although not all of it was good. 

This story has just about everything you could want in a story.  It has friendship, comradery, love/romance, conflict, etc.

I will offer a word of caution to readers there are violent elements, and a brief sexual assault.  If you have sensitivities to these elements, you may want to read with caution. They are necessary to the telling of the story, however, you could skim over the scenes without losing the integrity of the story.

The only negative aspect that I can find with the story is that the ending is a major cliffhanger.  However, after interviewing Heather, I know that the story continues in the form of a sequel that she just finished.  I am anxiously awaiting to find out more.

I truly found myself caught up in this story.  As times I was so engrossed while reading that I was completely oblivious to my surroundings.  “Take What You Can” is definitely a 5-star read.

“Take What You Can” will be released on July 27, 2020 from Tuskan Publishing.  It can be purchased from Amazon in Kindle format for $3.99.

I received an advanced electronic copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.  I would like to thank NetGalley, Heather Garvin, and Tuskan Publishing.  This has no way impacted the rating or thoughts portrayed in this review.

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