Wren Caswell is average. Ranked in the middle of her class at Sacred Heart, she’s not popular, but not a social misfit. Wren is the quiet, “good” girl who’s always done what she’s supposed to—only now in her junior year, this passive strategy is backfiring. She wants to change, but doesn’t know how.
Grayson Barrett was the king of St. Gabe’s. Star of the lacrosse team, top of his class, on a fast track to a brilliant future—until he was expelled for being a “term paper pimp.” Now Gray is in a downward spiral and needs to change, but doesn’t know how.
One fateful night their paths cross when Wren, working at her family’s Arthurian-themed catering hall, performs the Heimlich on Gray as he chokes on a cocktail weenie, saving his life literally and figuratively. What follows is the complicated, awkward, hilarious, and tender tale of two teens shedding their pasts, figuring out who they are—and falling in love.
Robin Constantine is a born and bred Jersey girl who moved down South so she could wear flip-flops year round. She spends her days dreaming up stories where love conquers all, well, eventually but not without a lot of peril, angst and the occasional kissing scene.
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Wren Caswell has always been average. She’s ranked in the middle of her classes, she has friends but she’s not the queen bee and she’s always been the child her parents never had to worry about.
She gets a wake up call in the form of a decline to her school’s honor society. The reason?
Wren Caswell. Doesn’t participate in class.
Bright but quiet.
Then something happens that changes the too quiet path she was on. She meets Grayson Barrett. Not in any kind of typical fashion. Think cocktail weenies.
Wren’s family owns The Camelot, a family institution for forty-five years… it used to be the place to have your wedding. Today… not so much. But lucky for Grayson, Wren just happens to know the Heimlich and was standing next to him.
Grayson looked younger than I remembered. His hair was a tousled mess, with those jagged bangs hanging in his eyes, and he wore this retro-style blazer with patches at the elbows that he somehow managed to make look cool. He had an eyebrow piercing by his left eye – something that I hadn’t noticed at the wedding. And there was that grin again. A dazzling sun drawing me into orbit.
Grayson Barrett used to be the golden child and king of his school. At least before he got kicked out, and now he’s not sure who he’s supposed to be. With the reappearance of his friends he’s being tugged in one direction even though it’s not what he wants or needs. He starts to form an attachment to Wren though, and even goes so far as to start working for her family at The Camelot just to be near her and get to know her.
Well, I’d rather think of it as strategically putting myself in your path so we can be friends…But if you want to call it stalking, okay.”
He’s charming and witty and cute and Wren can’t seem to think of any reason not to get involved with him.
But there is more to this story than just Wren and Gray getting to know each other. The things that Gray was involved in in his old life are rearing their ugly head again in the form of his old friend Luke. I’ll get straight to the point. Luke is a d-bag. You’ll agree with me from the get go. But he’s a necessary evil unfortunately. Gray struggles with wanting to be accepted by the people he thought were his friends but he also knows that Wren is someone exceptional and amazing… that she could help him figure out who he should be.
Of course he does dumb boy stuff. That’s a given, and this is where a lot of the drama comes from. Was it forced… no. But it seemed like a lot of stuff was happening, especially for Gray.
The things I liked… the growth that both Wren and Gray go through during this story was wonderfully done. Both still may not know what the future holds for them, but they have moved forward in figuring it out. I think that teens will definitely find many aspects of the story relatable.
I enjoyed the alternating points of view for sure. Being able to get into both their heads really allowed us as the reader to see how certain decisions affected others and these characters were realistically flawed which really helped in being able to connect with them. Even when I was reading and stopped to yell internally at the characters, I could understand why they may have done something even if I wanted to smack him upside the head.
One thing that I think I kind of struggled to be happy about was the fact that there were no repercussions for these boys. I’m not going to say anything specific regarding it, but I feel like it was just kind of glossed over.
Also, I don’t feel like we got a lot of relationship and cute getting to know you kind of stuff with Gray and Wren. I don’t know if I’d call it insta-love… but some might call it that. I just wanted more of them without the interruptions of life. And while I know that’s not always how real life goes, I think all the other issues kept getting in the way of us getting to know these characters a bit more as a couple.
Overall, I really enjoyed The Promise of Amazing and of course, I adore that cover. Definitely recommend it for fans of YA with a dash of romance and swoony bad boys. I’ll definitely be watching for more from Robin Constantine.
Thank you to HarperCollins for the advance copy in exchange for an honest review.