In a surprising twist, I've actually already read the companion novel to this book BEFORE picking up this one. Sacrilege, I know. But I was offered book two for review and technically they are companion novels, not full sequels, so I wasn't too worried. After reading this one, I know I didn't miss a lot in the companion - they are pretty much separate books.

Hello everyone!

I am back with another book review, This Raging Light by Estelle Laure.

This book follows seventeen-year-old Lucille who, after her father's nervous breakdown, has been struggling to stay afloat. Now her mother has taken off with no contact and it's past the two weeks that she promised. Taking care of her younger sister and the responsibilities of being a parent - including paying bills and buying groceries - Lucille tries to navigate her new life. The changes put a strain on her relationship with her best friend Eden, and somehow now is the time that her crush on Eden's brother Digby is in full swing.

When I first started this book, I knew it was going to be deeper than your typical contemporary novel. I'm not sure why - it's been a while since I read the synopsis - but it was just a feeling that I had. Despite the sisterly love and few moments of romantic breaks, this was a pretty heavy hitting book that didn't quite reach suffocating, but it came close. My heart ached for Lucille and all that she was going through, but Laure was quick to balance those moments with some reprieve.

The writing style of this book was similar to that of the companion novel (shocking, I know) and I whipped through it in about 2 hours flat. It's not a super long book and I'm a fairly quick reader so keep that in mind, but I was just constantly engaged in the story. There was never a moment where I was waiting for something to happen, mainly because this seemed like more of a character-driven novel than a plot-driven one. To be fair, there wasn't a ton of character development, but there was enough to keep things going.

There were some issues I had with the book - mainly with the romance. Not necessarily with the characters themselves in the romance but the umm... cheating? And minimization of remorseful feelings? Ya, not really my jam. Anyways, there was some tension, but it was mainly because Digby had a long-term girlfriend and the tension was more of "is he going to cheat" than "does he like her."

Overall, I enjoyed most of this book, despite some of my other problems with it.