When you don’t know what you should do, can a Magic 8 ball point you in the right direction? That’s what I hoped to find out in this recently released, contemporary young adult novel!
When I first saw Signs Point to Yes on NetGalley and read the description I could not wait to get my hands on it! I looked up the author, Sandy Hall, on Goodreads and saw that her first novel, A Little Something Different, which I haven’t read, was insanely popular. This had me even more excited to read the book. Unfortunately the book fell very flat for me and was not even close to what I expected.
Right away I was annoyed by the main female character, Jane. She is selfish and whiny. I don’t really understand her anger at her mother helping her to get an internship. I can understand wanting to make money over the summer, but what parent wouldn’t want you to find your own job and save up? That just wasn’t realistic. Her sister, Margot, seemed like she was going to be a main character, but there were just not that many chapters from her perspective. It was almost as if her storyline was thrown in there to add some more “teen issues” to the table. Teo is a very unrealistic teenage boy. He and his best friend, Ravi, are written like many female friendships in novels are. I’m not saying this in a negative way, it just did not ring true while reading. It bothered me enough to ask my boyfriend if this is actually what being a teenage boy and having a best friend is like, and he said not even close to that extent. Teo also had some storyline that I didn’t see as quite realistic either. Nothing felt like it would in real life.
The characters are supposed to be in high school, but they sounded more like middle school students, or even 5th graders at some points. This made reading some parts particularly difficult as they dealt with some more adult themes and I had to remind myself that these characters are, in fact, in high school. The writing was very stiff and did not flow at all. A lot of the “arguing” sounded like insults thrown at a playground between grade school children. Also the dialog between Teo and Jane is very cheesy and not realistic. For being marketed as realistic, contemporary fiction, this does not fit the bill.
The best part were Teo’s three little sisters. They are very cute and written very well.
If you are looking for a cute, high school, contemporary read like you might get from John Green or Rainbow Rowell, I would suggest looking elsewhere. Maybe even try Sandy Hall’s first novel, which I will be giving a chance based on positive feedback. Unfortunately on this one though, all signs pointed towards “no.”
*I received this advanced copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*