I gave this book 4 stars because the F Bomb was used alot and that took away from the reading experience for me I don t mind some language but not when it is used alot.When the first senior blows up there is a funeral and counceling for for the rest of the students in the class But when and students combusts fear sets in to the school, then the town and then the country The school is closed and the army is sent in to make sure all the students stay in the area.The only people who stick arround are the reporters.Mara is the teller of this story, I liked her honesty about how she thought of the students who blew up and how she was dealing with it all Her parents were cool and her boyfriend lovely I did find it hard that she and her friend drifted apart abit as time when on.As and students disappeared Mara and the rest of the students go from trying to stay positive to a spirilling out of control in the choices they make I didn t find this story funny but I did understand their reactions, it would be a horrible thing to go through. I got this as an ARC at BEA 16 and was very excited about it after sitting in on a YA panel Before I begin, I want to say that this bookwasoriginal and itwasaddicting That s where the good things end for me Let me explain1 starIt was definitely original The author picked a unique premise and a unique situation There were some points where it felt dystopian and some points where it felt like an FBI story, but mainly was rooted in realistic fiction Which was interesting for this scenario2 starsIt was addicting It s like watching a bad or trashy tv show, you catch yourself thinking This is bad, and as you consider flipping the channel there s something that hooks you in I was done with this book many times, and then I flipped a few pages The premise had me wanting answers, despite how hard it was to read about the characters involved1 StarI Hated The Narrator I hated her as a person and I hated her narrative style She was supposed to be this relatable teenager going through all the feels, but she was just awful She knows she s awful and discusses it throughout But she also hastheworst narrative style Those looking for forward telling stories can expect to be annoyed on multiple occasions Mara tells you about something or someone usually unimportant and then starts the next chapter Eventually she realizes Oh, I bet you were wondering about X or I never asked you to guess Y and then rewinds, tells you, and moves on because itwasn t important 2 StarsI can see why John Green liked this book There are a lot of Green elements contemplating the what if s of life and the 5 year plan, as well as the very high school live the moment But the characters kept swinging on a pendulum of caring and not caring that I eventually found myself checked out I didn t care about Mara or the others, I was made to feel like another news reporter who eventually moved on to a interesting town3 StarsMajor spoilers view spoiler I spent 355 pages wondering why these kids were blowing up only to NEVER be told why that stuff was happening to them I don t care if there s a bigger picture message, it s a cop out When we thought it was a virus, I was curious When Mara told us it was her, I almost threw the book And I get that Starmer didn t want to end it all with a romance so he blew Dylan up , but the ending was crap No Dylan, no Tess, no drinking, no worries She just all of a sudden became content in not knowing, one step above all of that awful drunken stupor To have to read through that awful character and then get no answers worstbookendings hide spoiler Katelyn Ogden Was A Lot Of Things, But She Wasn T Particularly Explosive, In Any Sense Of The WordMara Carlyle S Senior Year At Covington High In Suburban New Jersey Is Going On As Normally As Could Be Expected, Until The Day Wa Bamfellow Senior Katelyn Ogden Explodes During Third Period Pre Calc Katelyn Is The First, But She Won T Be The Last Senior To Spontaneously Combust Without Warning Or Explanation The Body Count Grows And The Search Is On For A Reason Terrorism Drugs Homosexuality Government Conspiracy While The Seniors Continue To Pop Like BalloonsMara Narrates The End Of Their World As She Knows It With Tell It Like It Is Insight As She Tries To Make It To Graduation In One Piece Through An Explosive Year Punctuated By Romance, Quarantine, Lifelong Friendship, Hallucinogenic Mushrooms, Bloggers, Ice Cream Trucks, Snooze Button , Bon Jovi, And The Filthiest Language You Ve Ever Heard The President Of The United States Use Over Skype Instagram Twitter Facebook PinterestThis was the okayest book I ve read in a while Did I like it Meh Did I hate it Meh It was okay I m not sure if that s damning with the faintest of praise, in light of the rather abysmal rating it has on Goodreads, or just a straight up slam since the blurb on the back announces that the author rewrites the rulebook Um, yeah, no, sorry Starmer definitely does not do that.SPONTANEOUS is definitely an unusual premise for a book Narrated by an annoying quirky quirkily annoying girl named Mara, and set in one of those small, East Coast towns, it is a book about teens literally blowing up, as in spontaneously combusting Nobody knows what is happening, or why, but it soon creates a panic and a quarantine and a whole bunch of conspiracy theories.I liked the beginning of this book a lot than I liked the middle for several reasons, which could be numbered as such 1 terrible and forced romance, 2 lack of closure, and 3 overly precious narrator who feels inauthentic and fake basically what a bad narc would sound like if they were pretending to be a teen.I wanted to like SPONTANEOUS because this was actually a mom rec i.e a book recommended to me by my mom , but I m afraid I wasn t really vibing with this book This is the second mom rec to fail me Does this mean I can t trust my mom any Maybe, maybe not But I definitely can t trust this author or his blurb writer, because I was expecting something sensational and ended up with what was a pretty disorganized mess with a rather unsatisfying ending.2 to 2.5 stars LINK UPDATEDHere s what happens when a guy blows up during your group therapy session that s supposed to make you feel better about people blowing up The group therapy session is officially cancelled You do not feel better.Okay, right off the bat, before we get into all the awesome things about this story, let me make one thing perfectly clear.Some people are bound to not like this main character She s opinionated, and lazy, and morbid She does drugs, falls in love too quickly, makes snap judgements, and making jokes is her biggest coping mechanism.She s the kind of guy who laughs at a funeral if you will.But, you know what I went through a lot of these same feelings when I was a teenager minus the spontaneous combustion element, of course So, while some people might point out things Mara does that don t seem realistic well, I would like to tell these people that she might very well be my teenage spirit animal Only, well, way confident in herself than I ever was But that s on me.And sometimes, when people around you start blowing up without warning, what you really need is a little humour to help save you from those deep, wallowing pits of despair I like Mara s jokes, Brian Chen responded They help me remember it s okay to smile I don t know if I d still be coming to these things if it wasn t for Mara Thank you, Bri, I said, and at that point I began to realize that we were a bit of a clich Stories about troubled teenagers often feature support groups where smart ass comments fly and feelings get hurt, where friends and enemies are forged over one liners and tears But here s the thing Even if we were a bit of a clich , we were only a clich for a bit Because almost immediately after announcing his dedication to my humor, Brian Chen blew up.Enter Mara, the only person who could tell this story without it getting too depressing, while still putting into words so very well how the grief and shock of this sort of situation affects the survivors.You can t feel much of anything in a moment like that You certainly can t analyze the situation At least not while it s happening Later, the image will play over and over in your head, like some demon GIF, like some creeper who slips into your bed every single night, taps you on the shoulder, and says, Remember me, the worst fucking moment of your life up to this point Later, you ll feel and do a lot of things, but when it s actually happening, all you can feel is confusion and all you do is react.I sat there drinking and feeling sorry for myself Then I sat there drinking and feeling angry at myself Then I sat there drinking and feeling nothing, watching the rain like every pitiful person who ever thought that rain can stand in for emotions when, really, it s only weather Stupid fucking weather Oh, yes, and she swears A lot No, she doesn t actually laugh at a funeral, but she definitely laughs at some funeral adjacent events, and she makes jokes of the too soon variety in her people who were in the same room as the girl who spontaneously combusted support group The rest of this review can be found HERE I have never seen a book about spontaneous combustion, so I was immediately intrigued by the synopsis.I loved Mara She s snarky and maybe a little rude and a lot hilarious I absolutely loved the relationship she had with her parents the honesty between the 3 of them was perfect Dylan was sweet and a little weird, but it really worked.I could have loved this book, I could have been obsessed with it However, there were some things that didn t get explained and some plot lines that didn t make any sense to me And while the ending was oddly satisfying, there s only a general idea of what happened and I hate that with a passion.Overall, the story was unique and captivating It was hilarious and heartbreaking and I really enjoyed it I ll definitely be reading it again Huge thanks to Dutton Books and Edelweiss for providing the arc in exchange for an honest review 3.5 5 stars Here s what happens when a guy blows up during your group therapy session that s supposed to make you feel better about people blowing up The group therapy session is officially cancelled You do not feel betterSpontaneous is, frankly, the weirdest, funniest, exquisitely written books I ve read so far this year It s sad, but it wasn t even on my radar when it first popped up in Australia last year, and if it hadn t been for Figgy sending me a copy of this delightful book as a surprise, I would ve carried on being completely ignorant of this baby s birth into the world.What really made this book Mara Carlyle, our main character I fell in love with her, harder and faster than any character ever, and it was a damn better love story than Twilight, I can tell you that much at least Mara is almost unforgivingly vocal and blunt, she pulls no punches, and seriously does not care what you think of her She s unlikeable to the core, and yet, even written by a man, I identified with her so much She talks female masturbation, crazy teen hormones, the experimentation of drugs and alcohol something we read at length about in this novel, but not so much that it becomes sickening , and how, even when your classmates are literally spontaneously combusting in front of you life goes on, and you gotta go on with it or be left behind As mentioned before, Mara is highly unlikeable I can see why a lot of people wouldn t like her, and why she d be labelled as reckless But sometimes you need to be reckless in order to live Whilst her friends are blowing up, with no explanation whatsoever, and the FBI are tracking their every move whilst journalists camp out on porches and the school shut down when Mara feels her world coming to a halt, she still finds a way to fall in love with a boy, and with her life That s commendable, in my opinion I loved it.I won t give too much away The one thing I didn t like and it s the reason this book isn t a solid 4 is that view spoiler we never get an explanation for why Covington s seniors explode at any given moment hide spoiler I don t know what happened I was having a blast with this book Alright, maybe not a blast per se, but it was enjoyable it was fun, even funny from time to time, its humour comparable to the one in Me and Earl and the Dying Girl and it just felt original.Until it wasn t any I did get to page 110, so the good doesn t just vanish in a turn of page, but something did happen I don t know if it was me who suddenly didn t find Mara as honest and enticing any, or if it was the book s fault.It was the book s fault.I m actually still a little befuddled by how quickly the romance appeared in the plot THAT came out of the blue Mara was single and then she wasn t any What the hell And though the whole spontaneous combustion thing had its appeal at first, other people trying to link it to immigrants and gay people kind of drowned my excitement It was a bit unclear whether the author was trying to send a message through those ka booms, but I guess I didn t get far enough to know for sure But whatever, I had to put a stop to my reading, because Mara was driving me insane with her all over the place thoughts and spontaneous love story Bleh Plus, to be fully honest, and I know this is a weird thing to say, but she didn t exactly have the voice of a teenage girl A lot of people are going to frown at me for saying this, but she had the voice of a teenage boy I know, I know, how dare I say such a thing everyone has a different voice, and what does it even mean to have a boy voice You crazy, Lola.But that s how I felt And it was contrived, like the author was trying too hard Hmm, I wonder if she explodes at the end, too I wish I were one of those people who feel comfortable reading the ending of a book without even having read the whole story, but I am not Too bad Blog Youtube Twitter Instagram Google Bloglovin Ready for one of the most unique concepts I ve seen done in YA in years Two words..spontaneous combustion Do I have your attention You heard that right a book about people just randomly going KA BOOM..exploding Pretty cool if you ask me To make this situation even better, I am here to tell you that I was entertained through and through There is this great level of dark humor almost on par with something like the movie Heathers Spontaneous follows Mara Carlyle, a senior at a New Jersey high school Everything is going normal, if you will, until suddenly a classmate explodes in the middle of class This is only the beginning The local community is mourning while trying to piece it all together The entire nation find themselves astonished and afraid as they watch these New Jersey seniors spontaneously combust from afar The FBI is investigating in hope of finding the cause.We re with Mara as she deals with this phenomenon and the possibility that she too will explode Her relationships are a huge bonus to the story Mara s parents were really cool, ideal parents Their relationship with their daughter was trusting, realistic, and perfect in this scenario I was touched by it Mara also has a great friendship with Tess, her lifelong best friend It s a key part of the story and gets such a strong portrayal The exploration of their friendship elevated the novel for me There is a romance to top everything off, though it s not overwhelming to the story.Mara s voice is very snarky Some might find her crass I felt it worked for this type of book It has a somewhat dark concept, so her voice with that dark sense of humor just really worked for me The ending might not work for everyone full answers aren t exactly given I still found the read to be pretty satisfying giving me a good laugh here and there.This book has already been picked up to have a film adaptation I m excited to see how it turns out Maybe this will be one of the next big things Eh Maybe It s certainly unique I ll be keeping my eye out for info.
Is a well-known author, some of his books are a fascination for readers like in the Spontaneous book, this is one of the most wanted Aaron Starmer author readers around the world.
- 368 pages
- Aaron Starmer
- 27 June 2019 Aaron Starmer