ARC Review: Slingshot by Mercedes Helnwein

Posted April 25, 2021 by Lisa Mandina in Review / 2 Comments

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

ARC Review:  Slingshot by Mercedes HelnweinSlingshot by Mercedes Helnwein
Published by Wednesday Books on April 27, 2021
Genres: YA Contemporary Romance
Pages: 352
Source: the publisher
Format: ARC
My Rating: four-stars
Buy on AmazonBuy on Barnes & Noble


An exciting debut contemporary young adult novel perfect for fans of Rainbow Rowell and Mary H. K. Choi 

Grace Welles had resigned herself to the particular loneliness of being fifteen and stuck at a third-tier boarding school in the swamps of Florida, when she accidentally saves the new kid in her class from being beat up. With a single aim of a slingshot, the monotonous mathematics of her life are obliterated forever…because now there is this boy she never asked for. Wade Scholfield.

With Wade, Grace discovers a new way to exist. School rules are optional, life is bizarrely perfect, and conversations about wormholes can lead to make-out sessions that disrupt any logical stream of thoughts. 

So why does Grace crush Wade’s heart into a million tiny pieces? And what are her options when she finally realizes that 1. The universe doesn’t revolve around her, and 2. Wade has been hiding a dark secret. Is Grace the only person unhinged enough to save him?

Acidly funny and compulsively readable, Mercedes Helnwein’s debut novel Slingshot is a story about two people finding each other and then screwing it all up. See also: soulmate, friendship, stupidity, sex, bad poetry, and all the indignities of being in love for the first time. 

My Review:

So as I first started this one, I wasn’t sure I was going to like it very much. While normally I enjoy a really sarcastic character, as I might be a bit of one myself, the main character, Grace, was really unlikable. And then the way she had the crush on her teacher, which was so out there, that made me a little unsure if I would enjoy the book as well. But soon, as other characters, Wade specifically, came into the story, I began to enjoy it more. Even laughing out loud at some of her sarcasm soon enough.

While there was still a lot about Grace that was very off-putting, there were many things about her that I did identify with myself. Like when she was thinking how she wasn’t really a girl that guys would be interested in, she said this about herself, and it kind of describes me perfectly:

“Being a very human, very unsophisticated idiot, however, was totally up my alley…”

And then, while I totally get why she did what she did with Derek, in a way, it makes sense to do that. I just knew it was going to mess things up with Wade, especially the way it all went down. The end of the book was totally a mess the way that a real teenagers life would seem or actually be for them in real life. What’s sad, is that I realized I’m more like her roommate Georgina in a way than her. With the not knowing what it was like to really be in love with someone and have them in love with you.

The ending was a little unsatisfactory, even while it was realistic I guess. But between the ending and the way I was unsure about Grace at the beginning, the best I could give it was 4 stars, even though I was really sucked into it and sped through it quickly once I got through that first part. I did shed a few tears at the end thinking of how it might end that way, and so the emotions were definitely there.

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2 responses to “ARC Review: Slingshot by Mercedes Helnwein

  1. I set this book aside. I was ok with Grace’s personality, but the teacher thing was too much for me. I might give it another try, but you saying the ending was unsatisfactory isn’t urging me on (you know how I feel about endings)

    • Lisa Mandina

      The teacher thing almost made me stop as well. But the middle got really good, and then the ending was a little unsatisfactory. So it’s not one I will recommend that much. If you ever have extra time you might give it another try, but don’t feel like you’re missing anything necessarily.

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