“Kissed: A Young Adult Anthology”
9 Short Stories to Melt Your Heart
By Samantha Shrider / July 22th 2018
Author(s): Christine Rees, Kacie Ji, Roxas James, Peri Elizabeth Scott, M. Wiklund, Sasha Hibbs, Lisa Borne Graves, and Kate Larkindale
Publisher: Evernight Teen
Publication Date: July 20th 2018
Source & Format: Evernight Teen, eARC
Page Count: 415
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Pucker up for KISSED!
Kisses can be innocent, playful, or just to comfort. Some are for luck and others have the promise of sweeter ones to come.
That’s why we’ve dedicated an anthology to the kiss. These eight hand-picked stories are brimming with romance, and they all begin and end with a kiss.
Our talented authors will prove that love knows no boundaries.
The stories and authors of KISSED:
Just Like the Movies by Christine Rees
It Started with a Kiss by Kacie Ji
After Tomorrow by Roxas James
It’s in His Kiss by Peri Elizabeth Scott
Pixie Cuts and Purple Dye by M. Wiklund
No Romeo by Sasha Hibbs
Dare by Lisa Borne Graves
Run to You by Kate Larkindale
I’m always impressed with published writers, the amount of work that goes into writing and editing and marketing a book is intense and I can only imagine an anthology would be more so; so while I gave “Kissed” three stars I want to be clear that while this book wasn’t in my top favorite contemporary reads it very well be something you would absolutely love. I’m very picky about contemporary YA books, and generally find myself wanting a little meat with the love stories. “Kissed” is nine ooey-gooey love stories: seven of which are basic girl meets boy in high school and fall in love, and two feature LGBT couples.
One of my favorite parts about all nine stories was the relationships between the MC’s and their friends, there lacked a lot of the cattiness I expect from stories based in highschool, and really featured a lot of girls supporting girls, specifically in Rees short story “Just like the movies,” and Hibb’s story “No Romeo.”
I absolutely loved Scott’s “It’s in his kiss,” and would like to see more from this author. Her writing had great pace and description and I found cold heart melting even though the story had corny moments. That’s what we’re here for though, right? Sweet corny love stories. “No Romeo” by Hibbs was another favorite and felt very fleshed out with great pacing.
I think my biggest complaint with the anthology was the dialogue in most of the stories felt very forced. This could be due to the constraint of a short stories word count, but I also think there’s room for the authors to grow. I would definitely pick up and read other books by these authors, but I don’t know that I would buy a physical copy of this book for myself.
If you love sweet summer stories about first loves, this one is for you. If you’re more into contemporary plots that have depth I’m not sure you’ll love this book.
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Evernight Teen. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.