Book Review: What You Wish For by Katherine Center

This book has been on my TBR since it’s publication in July and It is my first by the author. I had high expectations because of several reviews I had read on Goodreads, social media and comments about the author’s work generally. I finally got around to reading this book now.

‘What You Wish For’ is a story about choosing joy and living life to the fullest no matter the circumstances you find yourself. The main character Sam, is a Librarian at the school owned by her mentors and second parents, Max and Bebeth. Due to Max’s sudden demise, the school employs a new principal who turns out to be Sam’s long time crush, Duncan Carpenter. However, as Duncan arrives and takes over the affairs of the school, introducing several changes to everyone’s alarm, Sam wonders who this new Duncan is and why he is so different from her crush of barely four years ago. As she fights for what she believes is right for both the kids and teachers, she slowly understands Duncan’s choices and also learns that she also needs to change her perspective on some of her fears.

The book was okish! It was a good story but I think I felt this way because for some reason, I expected more. I liked the sub-theme of keeping children safe in schools due to several mass shootings that have happened in the past few years in America. However, my major disappointments here were the characters as I didn’t really find any of them likable as such. Sam came off as someone much younger and immature even when she was supposed to be almost 30 years old so I felt like I was reading a YA novel which I am not a huge fan of. There were also quite a number of repetitions that almost drove me crazy (I listened to the audio book) as Sam kept on going on and on about how Duncan used to be.

Ultimately, it wasn’t bad but it wasn’t great either. It is however a quick and easy read and may not be a bad choice to read if you are looking for some thing light. I will still go ahead to read other books by the author as planned. I haven’t lost faith yet.

Rating: 3 Stars

Published: July 14th 2020 by St. Martin’s Press

Pages: 320

Genre: Romance (Contemporary)

Buy: Amazon


The Author:

Katherine Center | Authors | Macmillan

Katherine Center is the New York Times bestselling author of How to Walk Away, the upcoming Things You Save in a Fire (August 2019), and five other bittersweet comic novels. Six Foot Pictures is currently adapting her fourth novel, The Lost Husband, into a feature film starring Josh Duhamel, Leslie Bibb, and Nora Dunn. Katherine has been compared to both Nora Ephron and Jane Austen, and the Dallas Morning News calls her stories, “satisfying in the most soul-nourishing way.” Katherine recently gave a TEDx talk on how stories teach us empathy, and her work has appeared in USA Today, InStyle, Redbook, People, Vanity Fair, The Atlantic, Real Simple, Southern Living, and InTouch, among others. Katherine lives in her hometown of Houston, Texas, with her fun husband, two sweet kids, and fluffy-but-fierce dog.


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