Unclaimed Baggage by Jen Doll
This book surprised me in the best way. I really enjoyed all three of the characters and loved seeing their friendship grow. It can be hard to carry a story over three POVs, but Jen Doll did it quite well. I enjoyed all POV’s equally.
This book falls perfectly into the category of “contemporary novel that deals with serious issues”. It also has a creative premise. Real friendships grow between the characters and just seeing them interact was so much fun, they read like typical teens (or at least I assume what typical teens of today are like because I haven’t been a teen for four years).
CW: alcoholism, sexual assault, & assault
WHAT I LIKED:
- The trio’s friendship and their dynamic. They are honest and real with each other in ways they haven’t been with other people
- How they all hang out with Nell’s family (especially that water park scene)
- The whole idea of the “Unclaimed Baggage” store and how random everything they found was
- How there is a relationship that lasts the entire book. I am tired of assuming that every couple who is together on page one, is going to break up during the novel
- This book also deals with many social issues while set in a conservative setting, which was interesting to read about. I loved the conversations the three of them had about race, religion, homosexuality, and sexual assault. These conversations made the characters feel real and relevant.
WHAT I DID NOT LIKE:
- For some reason I wasn’t gripped into the story, I loved my time reading it. But, I am not sure if this is a story that is going to stick with me forever
- At the end Doris’ parents reveal something BIG, but we do not get to see much of what happens after that. Clearly, this was a big deal for this family and I would have liked to see that explored more. (Is there going to be a sequel?).
- Doris’ plot line was weak at times, which was a shame because I love her. I would have liked to see more interactions with her parents and her own plot line get more page time
I would honestly like a sequel with these characters to continue seeing them grow together and on their own. Also, then we could see what happened after Doris’ family reveal and she could get the page time she deserves.
Goodreads Link: Unclaimed Baggage
*Thank you to NetGalley & the Publisher for an eARC in exchange for an honest review*
Yes I read this as an ARC and yes I know it has been out forever. I sent my NetGalley review in months ago, but took me forever to get this together…