Friday, May 17, 2019

You'd Be Mine by Erin Hahn

You'd Be Mine by Erin Hahn
Release Date - April 2, 2019
Publisher Website - Raincoast Books
Publisher Social Media - Twitter
Pages -  304 pages
My Rating - 5/5
**received from the publisher for an honest review**

Here is the Goodreads synopsis
Annie Mathers is America’s sweetheart and heir to a country music legacy full of all the things her Gran warned her about. Superstar Clay Coolidge is most definitely going to end up one of those things.

But unfortunately for Clay, if he can’t convince Annie to join his summer tour, his music label is going to drop him. That’s what happens when your bad boy image turns into bad boy reality. Annie has been avoiding the spotlight after her parents’ tragic death, except on her skyrocketing YouTube channel. Clay’s label wants to land Annie, and Clay has to make it happen.

Swayed by Clay’s undeniable charm and good looks, Annie and her band agree to join the tour. From the start fans want them to be more than just tour mates, and Annie and Clay can’t help but wonder if the fans are right. But if there’s one part of fame Annie wants nothing to do with, it’s a high-profile relationship. She had a front row seat to her parents’ volatile marriage and isn’t interested in repeating history. If only she could convince her heart that Clay, with his painful past and head over heels inducing tenor, isn’t worth the risk.
You'd Be Mine is part A Star Is Born (the Bradley Copper/Lady Gaga edition), part Walk The Line, and part perfect summer read. Erin Hahn had crafted a story that offers an addicting blend of romance, angst, and hope.

Music is the heartbeat to this story. The way it influences and drives the characters makes it feel like a character itself. It is the central force that pushes every other element of the story in some way. It, therefore, is a good thing that it feels so natural to the characters.

Annie is the daughter of music royalty and that crown is a heavy one to wear. Particularly when that legacy is steeped in tragedy. Annie is struggling with doing things on her own terms and accepting the complicated feelings the death of her parents and entering the music scene bring out in her. She is doing her best to move forward and exhibits strength is some pretty tough situations.

Clay is the bad boy musician who drowns his sorrows with alcohol, women, and generally not caring about anything. He has a tragic backstory of his own but is, obviously, handling it different than Annie. He also happens to be incredibly charming and irresistible to Annie (thanks in large part to the way his butt looks in his jeans). He is exactly the kind of boy Annie knows to stay away from thanks to her up close and personal view of the darker side of what fame can do to someone.

The push and pull of Annie and Clay's relationship is electric. It pulsates like the beat of one of their songs. They tease, aggravate, and try to outdo each other. It is a romance meant to appeal to those who love the slow burn. They convincingly go from people who don't really like or trust one another to becoming friends and finally something more.

Obviously, both Clay and Annie have baggage to spare. These are not healthy individuals who should be entering into a relationship. Their own personal demons are something they have to face on their own and the writing never alludes to any kind of magic fix (and this includes love). Everything from Annie's grief to Clay's addiction issues is so raw and authentic that it adds some gritty texture to a story I thought was going to be lighter than it was.

The tour element provides the perfect backdrop to this story. It combined the rush of performing with the decidedly not glamorous reality of life on the road. Travel is not the focus of the novel, it instead feeds into the larger story being told. It, much like the music, just felt true to the story being told. Some of the elements of touring are used to highlight both Annie and Clay's personalities which helped flesh out their characters more.

I immediately wanted to watch Walk The Line upon finishing the final page of this book. Annie and Clay's story may not be June and Johnny's but there is inspiration to be found there. This book is a love letter to music, complicated relationships, and finding your own voice. I highly recommend it to anyone who loves the young adult contemporary genre. Erin Hahn is definitely an author you'll want to keep an eye on.

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