A Story About Burning Love and Burning Buildings

“November 9” by Colleen Hoover is a completely absorbing book about two people with a forbidden love story. Hoover writes in the perspective of both of the main characters, Fallon and Ben. Fallon has a past involving a house fire, so she dreads the tragic anniversary of the event. That is, until she meets Ben on that date. The two instantly have a connection. Despite all of the scars covering Fallon’s body, Ben still makes her feel flawless.

They met in a restaurant in a very interesting way (no spoilers) but they end up spending the rest of the day together. What makes all this so exciting is that Fallon had to move across the country the next day. With Ben living in LA and Fallon moving to New York, obviously, a relationship is unreasonable. Instead, they decide to meet up every year on November 9th in that same restaurant. They also decided to have no communication in between, so they relied on completely trusting that the other person would show.

One of my favorite parts about this book was that the chapters were divided by each November 9. So, you would read the first year and then, with no contact in between, read the second ‘November 9’ the following year. Each year, they would catch up and talk about their lives and the reader simply follows along. The reader is unconsciously intertwined in the story with an omniscient view of both Fallon and Ben’s thoughts.

This is definitely one of those books where you put the rest of your life on hold until you finish it. There are so many twists and turns that I just couldn’t stop reading. Hoover’s writing is beautiful; it really makes you feel like you are right there along with them.

I also really enjoyed the views of both characters. I was able to build a connection with both of them. Knowing how they both felt about the situation helped me to understand easier, and it honestly made the book more enjoyable.

Another great aspect about this book is that it starts off with a bang and never really slows down. There weren’t any slow parts– actually, there were multiple times were I would re-read some paragraphs just because they were so good! I found myself in tears many times just because I could really understand how they felt.

I would say that this story is definitely for young adults, though. I would not recommend this for younger readers just because there are some intimate scenes, and it could be considered inappropriate to some.

Hoover also added in a major plot twist. WOW. I actually knew that there was a plot twist before I even started reading the book, and I was still so shocked. This twist made me want to scream and cry all at the same time. I knew that there was going to be something crazy at the end, but I was NOT expecting that at all. The author did a great job with this part for sure, it is definitely what makes this book stand out from others.  

The one down side of the entire book was the ending. I was expecting more and I don’t think that all of my questions were answered as well as I wanted them to be. Hoover covered the bare minimum, and I was left with questions unanswered. I wanted to know more about their future together but instead I was left hanging.

Actually, the conclusion seemed kind of rushed. While I was reading, I remember thinking, “How is this going to end with barely any pages left?” If she would’ve gone deeper into explaining the ending, this book would’ve been a 10 out of 10.

Overall, this whole story never lost my attention. I also can’t help but think about how this book would be an awesome movie. It has all the qualities of great drama and romance that keep you on the edge of your seat.

I would rate this book 9/10.

By Elise Siebert

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