by Lauren Gibaldi
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult
Publication Date: June 14th 2016 by HarperTeen
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Source: Publisher via Edelweiss
It’s always been a loaded word for Maude. And when she is given a senior photography assignment—to create a portfolio that shows the meaning of family—she doesn’t quite know where to begin. But she knows one thing: without the story of her birth mother, who died when Maude was born, her project will be incomplete.
So Maude decides to visit her best friend, Treena, at college in Tallahassee, Florida, where Maude’s birth mother once lived. But when Maude arrives, she quickly discovers that Treena has changed. With a new boyfriend and a packed social calendar, Treena doesn’t seem to have time for Maude—or helping Maude in her search.
Enter Bennett, a cute guy who lives in Treena’s dorm. He understands Maude’s need to find her mother. And as Bennett helps Maude in her search, she starts to find that her mother’s past doesn’t have to define her own future.
Lauren Gibaldi has crafted a beautiful and timely coming-of-age story that poses the question: Is who we are determined at birth, or can we change as we grow?
I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Autofocus focuses (see what I did there?) on Maude, a girl who was adopted. She wants to know more about her mom so she takes to opportunity to go to the college her best friend studies at because her mom used to study there. Hoping to learn about her mom’s school days from the professors, Maude makes the trip and plans to stay with her best friend. Thinks get a bit out of hand so Maude gets the help of a boy to help her out with her discovery.
I had a bit of a problem with Maude. Let’s just say people would walk all over her or say stuff and she would never express how she felt about it. It got irritating because it happened a lot, especially when it came to her best friend. I did not like her best friend at all. She was supposed to help Maude with her search and all she did was live the college life by partying and making out with her “boyfriend”.
Back to Maude: Slowly, Maude started to grow throughout the story and ultimately become someone better. Maude went through self-discovery for sure, while searching for her mom and making comparative notes. Maude’s hobby, photography, was something very important that I definitely enjoyed of the story.
The story felt so real when it came to the adoption aspects. Her parents were very skeptical, but they let her go on the trip because they knew she really wanted answers. There was a romance added to the story that took me a while to believe, but towards the end it started to grow more believable. I wish there had more to Maude and Bennett as a couple.
Overall, it was a quick read and I loved the take on adoption this book showed.
3 finished copies of AUTOFOCUS (US only)
FOLLOW THE TOUR:
6/6: Adventures of a Book Junkie – Q&A
6/7: Rants & Raves of a Bibliophile – Review in Photography
6/8: Princessica of Books – Cover Recreation
6/9: Latte Nights Reviews – Review
6/10: A Book & A Latte – How I Write
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