RATING: The epitome of summer!
If you haven’t read The Unexpected everything check out MY REVIEW first.
After you’ve finished reading come back and join the discussion!
BEWARE OF SPOILERS BEYOND THIS POINT
Books can make you feel a wide range of emotions. And The Unexpected Everything made me feel all the fun feels. No joke this book is the epitome of summer. If summer could somehow be contained in a single book, it would be The Unexpected Everything. I adored reading this book, and I can’t wait to talk to y’all about it! Let’s dive in…
As I mentioned in my review, the RELATIONSHIPS were everything in this book. The father-daughter. The friends. The 4 besties. The boyfriend. I loved it all. And I wanted more! (Honestly I would read a book about all of them just hanging out.)
We start off the book learning that Andie’s father is in the middle of a huge political scandal. There was a misuse of funds, and her father decides to take a leave of absence from Congress during the investigation. We’re immediately shown the obvious distance between Andie and her father through their awkward interactions and the unfamiliarity surrounding the two. Also we’re introduced to Andie’s group of friends right in the beginning via text messages. (Of course Toby is already using emojis) I loved reading the girls banter through their texts!
Let’s do a quick intro of the girls… Palmer, Bri, and Toby. Palmer’s the more carefree and fun one who is dating Tom, Toby was overly dramatic and boy crazy, and Bri was the funny film geek. I felt like I could’ve been besties with Palmer. She seemed like a great friend and a lot of fun. And Bri & Toby were an entertaining duo who were always attached to the hip.
It felt very high school when Andie’s friends snuck her out of her house by hiding her under a blanket to take her to a party. And, even though I just graduated, it still made me feel nostalgic (and a little old too). At this party, we learn that Andie has a problem with commitment. She seems to almost always have a boyfriend, but they usually don’t last longer than 3 weeks. Dang girl! We’re also introduced to Topher, who was her first kiss and on and off again hook up. We didn’t really get much out of his character, but if things had gone another way I totally could have seen them ending up together. (But glad they didn’t… because well CLARK!)
ohmygod! When Andie got the phonecall that Dr. Rizzoli rescinded his letter of recommendation and that she was dropped from her pre-med program, I was so upset! What an awful thing to do! And I could only just imagine the stress. I understand her father was in the middle of a political scandal, but he didn’t have to screw Andie like that (even though it ended up being for the best).
THE MEETING OF ANDIE AND CLARK! It was so cute. Bertie, that adorable huge ball of fluff, made it 10x better. I cracked up at how confused Andie was by Clark’s fandom shirt and would continue to be throughout the book. I liked Clark from the beginning. His initial awkwardness and nervousness was endearing and it felt good to read about a nice guy. I adored his sweet demeanor, and I honestly didn’t think they were going to meet again (because I didn’t realize that the love interest’s name was Clark… even though it’s in the freaking synopsis… of course, Amanda… whoops but in my defense I’m really bad with names).
Maya was super friendly, and I liked how she eased Andie into dog walking. Honestly I was considering dog walking while reading this because it sounds like a really good experience. I don’t have any pets, but I’ve walked my friends’ dogs a couple times and I always had a good time.
The couple next encounters between Clark and Andie were always hella awkward, but they still managed to be extremely endearing. Haha I liked Toby’s nicknames for Clark at first, “cool T-shirt guy” and “dog boy.” And I loved how her friends encouraged her to be the one to ask Clark out! #girlpower
When Andie finally gets up the courage to ask out Clark, it seems like he had the same idea in mind. Clark was so adorably awkward! He was unbelievably nervous and unable to actually ask her out, so I loved how Andie finally jumped in and asked to hang out.
“Um. I was wondering…, if you would like a chocolate?… I didn’t buy it them for you… Not that I wouldn’t have… I just… They were sent here today, that’s all. That’s what I meant.” And her response… “Fine, I mean thank you. That was… chocolate!” (142) – I’M DEAD *tears of laughter*
Their first date was disastrous to say the least. I had a couple laughs when Andie’s father meets Clark, and both realize key basic things about each other for the first time—Andie’s dad is a Congressman and Clark is a bestselling fantasy novelist (which wins him like 1000 bonus points). Going back to the date, Andie was distant the entire time and tried to avoid talking about herself, which just let to an awkward boring date. I liked how Clark was very blunt at the end when Andie said she had a nice time. He even called her out on not wanting to talk to him about “anything real” (166). But, despite their disastrous date, Clark, being a gentleman, still waited for her to enter her house before he left.
The Palmer & Toby challenge was hilarious. I loved how these challenges from Palmer seemed like a regular occurrence for the girls, and Toby really got a bad one. She could only text using emojis for the rest of the summer, and it was really fun trying to decipher her messages. I couldn’t get all of them, but I did manage to understand the gist of what she was trying to say. (Sidenote: Did Toby ever win that? Did I miss that or was it not mentioned?)
Then there was Bertie’s almost near death experience with chocolate. Oh, Clark. I was a little nervous during this scene because THE DOG and chocolate is NOT good for dogs. But after I got over my worries I really enjoyed reading this bonding period between Clark and Andie. Both finally manage to open themselves up to each other. Andie tells Clark that her mom unexpectedly died from ovarian cancer, and Clark tells her that he actually hasn’t started writing his third book (BUT Clark how could you do that to your poor readers?!?!). This was such a cute moment for the two of them. But Andie forgets to send her father text messages telling him where she is… (That is honestly the worst #guilty) Major disaster. Andie acted very childish during their fight, and I thought it was pretty funny when her father tracked her car and went to pick her up from the diner to her utter embarrassment. I’m glad their fight happened early on in the book, and I appreciated how he apologized and recognized his faults. It was great to watch the two of them work together to fix their relationship and eventually he became one of my favorite dads in YA (up there with papa Song).
In the beginning of their relationship, Andie tries to show Clark that he can still write and they both begin to tell the tale of Karl the thief and Marjorie the assassin. I loved listening to them make up stories and seeing them “co-author.” It was super cute, and I loved how they kept the story going throughout their relationship.
Tom, Palmer’s boyfriend, and Clark were the ultimate bromance goals. It was good to see Tom with another guy, and Clark with a guy friend. They bonded very quickly, and I Toby’s attempts at couple names—Tark or Clom—were hilarious.
Chilling at Clark’s house was always fun and just gave off so many summer vibes. It was nice to read about they just hanging out at the pool.
I loved how Andie and her father got hooked on Clark’s books, which led to more bonding. BUT Clark how could you have killed your main character, Tamsin!!!! Although the reader angst afterwards was hilarious.
The scavenger hunt sounded so fun! I really want to do one with my friends! It was such a rush reading about it, and it reminded me of a scavenger hunt birthday party I had ages ago. It was so much fun to read about all the characters being so competitive—like Clark taking Andie’s keys and paying $40 so they couldn’t get a menu, Andie involving her dad, her dad getting the menu anyway and stealing the sample spoon. I loved reading every minute of it! Although I would love to get the POV from the guys during the scavenger hunt. SIDENOTE: Dawn and Emily from Since You’ve Been Gone were working at the pizza shop! (pages 336-338 in the hardcover they made a small cameo)
I haven’t mentioned this before, but Toby was obsessed throughout the book with Wyatt. She believed he was the ideal guy, and was completely head over heels in love with him. She eventually confesses her feelings, but he says he’s into another girl. SO… I kind of guessed that Bri & Wyatt ended up hooking up that night of the scavenger hunt. I just didn’t quite believe his car had broken down like they claimed, and wasn’t too surprised when that drama went down. Who else suspected something was going on?
A lot of bad stuff happened all at once. Andie’s dad’s investigation cleared up, and it seemed like her father was going to run again despite their improved father-daughter relationship. Andie accidentally walks in on Bri and Wyatt, but instead of telling the truth Andie tells Bri they should hide their relationship until Wyatt leaves. I wish Andie had been honest from the beginning, but I think the results might have been the same between Toby and Bri. It was a really tricky situation. It got even more complicated when Andie told Clark, who told Tom, and then Andie wouldn’t let Tom tell his girlfriend Palmer. It was all a huge mess. And then Andie fought with Clark over basically nothing… She freaked out from all the change happening all at once, and it made me mad that she temporarily reverted back to her old self as if the summer had never happened.
Somehow things ended up working out. *sigh of relief* Andie gets a tip from Topher about not letting her dad speak at his upcoming event, but instead her dad surprises everyone by stating he won’t be running for reelection. Then Palmer and Andie “kidnap” Toby and Bri to try to work things out while on the way to Clark’s signing. It got really heated between the two, and unfortunately did not end up not working out. Both girls realized they need a break from each other, which was really upsetting.
I loved how Clark was taking questions at his signing, and then Andie asked if maybe Karl and Marjorie’s ending could change. It was so romantic, how it ended with them kissing in front of everyone one! *swoon*
I’m sad Toby and Bri didn’t make up, but I think it made the book seem more realistic. I’ve known girls who have gotten into fights over boys and were never the same. It was something I didn’t like, but at the same time I understand why Matson chose to do it. Toby and Bri needed space to figure out who they were without each other. And I think it’s good they learned to do that before college. Although I do hope they can become friends again.
So after summer is over… It was weird to see Toby without Bri later on. She ended up joining track and was hanging out with a new crowd. Andie ended up switching her concentration to veterinary medicine, and she still walks dogs part time. Bri and Toby talk, but things still haven’t gotten back to normal between the two even after Bri & Wyatt’s break up. Clark is going to college nearby, and he’s still telling the tale of Karl and Marjorie with Andie!
I loved how Clark’s third book was about all of them and their summer. It was so sweet, and you could easily point out who each character was based off of. Also I was a little confused by the book snippets at first, but I loved them after realizing they were from Clark’s books. I would really love to read Clark’s books myself! They definitely sound up my alley!
I got the Target edition of the book, so I was able to read 2 extra scenes. I totally agree with Matson that the scenes with all the friends were the best, and I just loved reading about their interactions even if it didn’t mean anything to the plot line. The second scene was about Emily and Frank and Dawn and Collins! YAY! It was so cute how Frank finished Emily’s list, and then decided to give her one for a date. So much fun and adventure and romance! I loved getting to revisit these characters again! And it really made me want to reread Since You’ve Been Gone. 🙂