Swim. Eat. Shower. School. Snack. Swim. Swim. Swim. Dinner. Homework. Bed. Repeat.
All of Maggie’s focus and free time is spent swimming. She’s not only striving to earn scholarships—she’s training to qualify for the Olympics. It helps that her best friend, Levi, is also on the team and cheers her on. But Levi’s already earned an Olympic try out, so she feels even more pressure to succeed. And it’s not until Maggie’s away on a college visit that she realizes how much of the “typical” high school experience she’s missed by being in the pool.
Not one to shy away from a challenge, Maggie decides to squeeze the most out of her senior year. First up? Making out with a guy. And Levi could be the perfect candidate. After all, they already spend a lot of time together. But as Maggie slowly starts to uncover new feelings for Levi, how much is she willing to lose to win?
This was actually my first Miranda Kenneally book, so I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from it, but let’s just say I was not disappointed in any way.
Maggie’s life revolves around swimming practice and school. Her ultimate goal is the Olympics, and she’s doing everything she can to achieve that. Unfortunately, that means she doesn’t have a lot of time for the typical high school experience, like dating cute guys, going to high school dances, etc.
Sacrifice sucks, but sometimes it’s necessary to get what you truly need.
After going to visit her future college for a weekend, and a disastrous make out session, she realizes she knows nothing about hooking up with guys, and she wants to rectify that. After thinking it through, she decides to ask her best friend Levi to teach her, he’s hesitant at first, because what could go wrong, right? But he ultimately accepts the offer and so it starts their friends-to-lovers relationship.
One thing that I really liked and that you don’t always see it on young adult books is the sex positive image. You don’t see mentions of slut-shamming (like it usually happens with the protagonist ‘enemy’) or anything of the kind, it’s like ‘I’m a girl, I like sex too, I can have casual sex just like guys do and you can’t say anything about it.’ I loved that, I think it’s so important.
I liked the friendships in this story; Maggie, Levi, Hunter and Georgia were such good friends to each other and I loved seeing that dynamic. Their interactions were so entertaining and fun that it made the whole book appeal even more to me. Also, I’d really love to read a book about Hunter and Georgia.
The romance was very cute, with some awkwardness to it at some parts, but overall super adorable. I liked how nothing felt rushed and the that you could see the lines slowly blurring and when their friendship started getting more into the relationship zone. I’m actually quite fond of this trope, friends-to-lovers, although it can be hard to handle it so I’m always a little unsure about it. But I appreciated how the author dealt with it here.
“I have no idea what I’m doing. What could I possibly teach you?”
“I don’t know, but,” he takes a deep breath, “you taught me how to love.”
There were some cringe worthy parts in this book though, I don’t deal well with second hand embarrassment and it happened quite often, so that was uncomfortable to me. However, the writing, the story, the characters, the interactions, everything put together, it made this a truly enjoyable book.
ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.