Author: Geoff Herbach
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Release Date: May 1st, 2012
Interest: Author / Sequel
Source: ARC received from the author
Summary (From Goodreads): Felton Reinstein thought he had it all-a great girlfriend, an athletic scholarship in the bag, and football friends he could totally count on. Wrong Like an elephant storming a house of cards, it all comes crashing down. And it’s Felton’s fault. Turns out his little brother has taken an impromptu road trip to Florida (aka desperate flight from all the talented people) to make a bid for stardom (aka fronting a hotel rock band with escapees from a retirement community). What’s a big brother to do but help pick up the pieces, even if it means giving up all the status, all the glory and once again facing a life of nothing special.
If you’ve been following my blog, then you know that I LOVED Geoff Herbach’s debut Stupid Fast. Felton Reinstein is an authentic character with a real voice which rocked my socks as a reader. Herbach doesn’t disappoint with his sequel Nothing Special. Around the time Stupid Fast released, Geoff was posting about the sequel and at the time it was going to be told from Andrew’s point of view. I really liked that idea, but somewhere down the line the story changed slightly so Nothing Special is told from Felton’s point of view instead of Andrew’s. Staying true to what I assume was Geoff Herbach’s original idea (I could be totally wrong in my assumption), Nothing Special focuses on Andrew and his relationship with Felton. Some people are calling Nothing Special a companion, but I don’t recommend reading it without having read Stupid Fast; there’s too many references to events from his debut.
Nothing Special is really different from Stupid Fast. To clarify, it’s different because Felton has matured since the first book which is apparent from the first page. Also, Nothing Special is written as a letter of sorts from Felton to Aleah. This change wasn’t what I expected and I liked it because it’s a change that really works and fits with the novel. Something that hasn’t changed is how important family is to Felton. He does have an odd way of showing the importance at times though. Still, even though it’s not always apparent how important his family is to him, Felton really cares about Andrew and we get to see that in Nothing Special. I love the balance between how Felton is handling life changes (Aleah being away for music, thinking about playing college sports, dealing with friendships) and the problems Andrew is (has) been facing.
Speaking of Andrew–I love that quirky kid! He really cares about Felton and wants at least some of those feelings returned by his brother. At times he seems like the typical annoying little brother, but Andrew’s really more than that. He’s very smart, intuitive, and quite sneaky. I thoroughly enjoyed getting to know him better in Nothing Special. Andrew kept tugging at my heart while at the same time had me cheering for him. I hope we get to see more of him in the future, especially if he has more surprises up his sleeve!
Just as I expected, Geoff Herbach has written another winner. My Stupid Fast fans in class are very excited to read Nothing Special, especially after I’ve been talking it up in class. I hope everyone who’s read Stupid Fast goes out and gets a copy of Nothing Special to read because it’s actually quite special!