Tonight the Street Are Ours by Leila Sales
Pages: 342 Pages
Genre: Young Adult, Realistic Fiction, Contemporary
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, September 2015
Overall Rating: 4/5
That’s how seventeen-year-old Arden Huntley has always thought of herself. Caring for her loved ones is what gives Arden purpose in her life and makes her feel like she matters. But lately she’s grown resentful of everyone—including her needy best friend and her absent mom—taking her loyalty for granted.
Then Arden stumbles upon a website called Tonight the Streets Are Ours, the musings of a young New York City writer named Peter, who gives voice to feelings that Arden has never known how to express. He seems to gether in a way that no one else does, and he hasn’t even met her.
Until Arden sets out on a road trip to find him.
During one crazy night out in New York City filled with parties, dancing, and music—the type of night when anything can happen, and nearly everything does—Arden discovers that Peter isn’t exactly who she thought he was. And maybe she isn’t exactly who she thought she was, either.
This might seem like I’m jumping ahead, but the ending was definitely my favorite part. Throughout the book, I was just feeling kinda “meh” about it, but the ending made it feel like it was worth my effort to read it. It was unexpected definitely… it was a pleasant surprise — to me at least. I feel like the message Sales delivered was very realistic and it definitely made sense to me. I definitely did like Sales’ writing style as well — the actual pacing of the plot, not as much.
This book is REALLY slow. The pacing of it is absolutely slow, way too slow for my taste. I feel like it took at least the first half of the book (maybe around 150 pages) to really develop the plot and introduce the characters. It was just very passive and was slightly disengaging. The pace didn’t pick up until around page 200. This really bothered me because I honestly felt that the first half of the book is almost useless. There was a lot of unnecessary scenes/chapters that didn’t do too much for me. Also, the synopsis, and some opening lines of the book are REALLY misleading… I don’t want to go into details to avoid spoilers, but be aware.
Writing style: 4/5
Honestly, I was kind of disappointed reading this book. The pacing was just too big of an issue for me to look past. The ending did redeem the book for me, hence the 4/5 rating (definitely on the low end of the rating though). Without that, I would have probably gave it a much lower rating. I felt like the characters were likable, but everyone except Arden showed very little development, were very static. The plot, had great potentials, but the pacing was just too slow it was kind of disengaging to read. Overall, it was good, but there were a lot of issues with it. Therefore, although I liked it (because of its redeeming factors), I am unsure if others would. The slow pace might cause a lot of DNFs definitely, so that is a great issue. However, if the plot really does interest you, I would say give it a try, and try to make it through (even if the pacing bothers you). But be aware of certain misleading factors that the narrator and synopsis might lead you to think.