Today I am back again with another blog tour. Thanks to Xpresso Book Tours for letting me participate! I finished What the Valley Knows last week and it was a lot different than I expected. Keep reading to see what it’s about!
What The Valley Knows
by Heather Christie
Publication date: January 25th 2018
Genres: Romance, Young Adult
Millington Valley is a quintessential small Pennsylvania town: families go back generations. Football rules. Kids drink while adults look the other way. High school is a whirlwind of aspiration and rivalry, friendship and jealousy.
When smart and pretty Molly Hanover moves to town and attracts the attention of the football team’s hero, Wade Thornton—a nice guy with a bad drinking habit—longtime friendships are threatened and a popular cheerleader tries to turn the school against Molly.
The young couple’s future is shattered when Wade, drunk, wrecks his truck and Molly is thrown through the windshield. She wakes from a coma to find her beauty marred and her memory full of holes. As she struggles to heal, she becomes sure that something terrible happened before the accident. And there is somebody in the valley who doesn’t want her to remember.
Cover This cover is gorgeous! I would love to go bring a towel or blanket there and sit and read my book. By now, I think a lot of people who follow our blog know my opinion about people on covers, so I’m happy we only see the back of them. I can still think of their appearance on my own.
Plot Molly and her mother just moved to Millington Valley and it’s clear it’s a town where everyone knows everyone. Ann, Molly’s mother, wants to make a place for them and give Molly a home she deserves. Molly is shy though and isn’t sure how her senior year in a new school will go. Once school starts though, the popular football player is very interested. Molly really isn’t sure what to do with this attention in the beginning, but does really like him. Their relationship causes some problems with Wade’s friend Legs and makes things complicated. Molly makes a couple friends along the way. Ann’s boss is kind of crepy. He lets them stay in the property he’s renting and comes by without asking. He gave me a creepy feeling from the start. Unfortunately I was right, he puts Molly in a rather heartbreaking position one evening and she doesn’t know how to deal. Wade has a drinking problem, even if he wouldn’t see it that way, and they get into a car accident. Molly’s injuries make her forget about everything that happened before that and to a certain point that’s a blessing. Wade is about to lose a lot over this accident, even though, besides drinking, it was a little more complicated. I love how realistic the author made these characters feel. As well as making me really get the small town vibe. I loved seeing Molly blossom with Wade’s attention and showed how high school is for some kids. Not nice with popular kids trying to bring them down. I loved Wade’s POV as well, because high school drinking is a bigger problem than a lot of people realize. It starts off slow and is a big problem without them realizing it. All the events show how easily something can get out of hand and I loved that they showed Wade putting in the work to get sober. For me this book didn’t get five stars, because I felt in the beginning not much happened and the ending was kind of rushed. The big reveal of her remembering everything and it being settled happened really quickly. The author’s writing style is really nice and made this book such an easy read. I think it’s great she took on some serious subjects and did so in a graceful way.
Characters Molly is a shy person who is good at school and is hoping to settle in and have a normal senior year. She’s really surprised the popular guys are noticing her, but loves the attention. Even though she may not know what to do with it. She’s relatable in the sense that she’s close to her single mom and they have a good relationship. After everything happens, Molly could’ve given up, but she starts fighting for what she wants. I think she is a very brave character. After the accident she doesn’t want anyone to see her, but I loved that her friends didn’t give up on her. That’s really how it should be.
Ann. It was weird to have a parent’s POV in a book. This was the first time I have read something this way, when the parent wasn’t a main character. In the beginning I wasn’t sure if it would add much to the story (and in my opinion in the beginning it didn’t), but when the accident happened I was really glad we had her side of things. Ann is a single mom after losing her husband and since then she’s been trying to give her daughter the best life she can. Even when what her boss is doing feels off, she still thinks she should go with it to give her daughter what she needs. I loved how she fought for her daughter and did everything she could to help. That’s what a mother does.
Wade seems like your typical high school football player, popular, doesn’t care much about school and only uses the girls who like him. This is mostly true until Molly comes to town. He doesn’t know what it is about her, but he really likes her. When he’s not doing to good in school and Molly tutors him, he actually starts getting it and actually enjoying learning. He even realizes, there is more than just football. There is his drinking problem though. At the time, he doesn’t really see it that way, but after the accident, he has to. Wade doesn’t want to get help, but as he does, he realizes a lot of things didn’t go right the past few years. I loved how he develops and really cares for Molly. He turns out to be a pretty good guy.
About the Author
Heather Christie grew up in rural Pennsylvania and, at age seventeen, took off for New York City in hopes of becoming a movie star. Flash forward several decades, a couple degrees, a bunch of cats, two kids and one husband later, she’s back in Pennsylvania writing her heart out and chasing dreams again. She loves to read, run, drink tea, and make Sunday dinner. Follow her blog at www.HeatherChristieBooks.com
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Even though this book was a lot different than I expected, I did enjoy it. I loved that we got three perspectives and the story really wasn’t only about one thing. The author took on some heavy subjects, not many YA authors do that this way. I have to compliment her for that.