Title: Losing Hope [#2 Hopeless]
Author: Colleen Hoover
In the follow-up to Colleen Hoover’s #1 New York Times bestseller Hopeless, the charming and irresistible Dean Holder tells the passionate story that has melted thousands of hearts.
In Hopeless, Sky left no secret unearthed, no feeling unshared, and no memory forgotten, but Holder’s past remained a mystery.
Still haunted by the little girl he let walk away, Holder has spent his entire life searching for her in an attempt to finally rid himself of the crushing guilt he has felt for years. But he could not have anticipated that the moment they reconnect, even greater remorse would overwhelm him…
Sometimes in life, if we wish to move forward, we must first dig deep into our past and make amends. In Losing Hope, bestselling author Colleen Hoover reveals what was going on inside Holder’s head during all those hopeless moments—and whether he can gain the peace he desperately needs.
Hopeless was amazing, and yet somehow Colleen Hoover managed to best herself with Losing Hope. While the synopsis describes it as a retelling of Hopeless from Holder’s point of view (which I honestly wouldn’t have minded if it was simply just that), Losing Hope is so much more. It’s true, we do get to live Hopeless again through Holder, but we also get to see what happened before, with Les, what got him in trouble, how he felt when he figured it all out. If you thought you loved Holder before, ladies and gents, wait until you read this. Even when I thought I knew it all, Colleen Hoover still managed to surprise me, wow me, and shatter my heart.
There were many things that contributed to the pure awesomeness of this book: Daniel, that notebook Holder writes in, seeing the before and the after, and Colleen Hoover’s perfect, effortless way of telling a story and creating her characters (even though it probably took a whole lot of effort and work).
First off, Daniel. He’s Holder’s best friend and a total odd-ball. While we had a lot of Six and Breckin in Hopeless, Daniel was the much needed comic relief in Losing Hope. Although he’s not the most well-mannered person, he stuck by Holder through it all, so all my props go to him.
A nonverbal conversation in which I give him the go-ahead to release any pent-up frustration he might still be harboring.
He grin mischievously and loudly slaps his palms down on the table. “Holy motherfucking shit!” he yells, climbing up onto his chair. He gestures wildly towards me. “Look everybody! It’s Dean Holder!” He proceeds to climb on top of the lunchroom table, pulling all the attention away from me and placing it on himself.
“Why is everyone staring at me?” he yells, motioning with huge, exaggerated gestures towards me. “We have the Dean Holder here! The one and only!” When only a few people look away from him toward me, he throws his hands up in the air like he’s disappointed in them. “Come on, guys! We’ve been anticipating this moment for two weeks now! Now that he’s finally here, you all decide to shut the hell up? What’s up with that?” He looks down at me and frowns, slumping his shoulders in defeat. “I’m sorry, Holder. I thought today would be a little more interesting for you. I was hoping for a Q&A session to kind of clear the air, but I didn’t realize every single person in this school is a spineless dipshit.”
So yeah, not the best way around things, but I was entertained by his little (or not so little) outbursts. I also liked how straight up he was with Holder and Breckin when he spoke about his life, or gave his opinion to them about anything and everything. Sometimes, Holder REALLY needed Daniel to snap him out of his own mind.
That notebook. OMFG THAT NOTEBOOK. There’s so many things I want to just freak out about with regards to that freaking notebook, but I can’t without revealing some epic spoilers, so I’ll just stick to the non-spoilery parts. Holder starts writing letters to Les in this notebook to vent, to get angry, to just get everything out in the open. I loved this because we got to see Holder’s thoughts even more indepth because this wasn’t him talking to someone, or putting on a facade. It was him, the notebook, and his twin sister. We got to see the rawest parts of Holder through this notebook, and throughout this entire book. It was amazing, heart-breaking, and sometimes just adorable, especially when he’s frolicking around singing praises about Sky.
With Holder’s story we get to see the before, i.e. what happens with Les, what happened to land him in Austin Texas, what the word “devastated” should and shouldn’t be used to describe, and how Holder finds that notebook. This back story really helped with Holder’s character development. We get to read about childhood memories, why Grayson is such a douche (not that what we learned in Hopeless wasn’t enough to prove that fact), and how Holder FEELS. As therapeutic as that sounds, it’s a big part in Losing Hope. What came before leads to what happens in Hopeless and I’m so glad we got to read about Holder’s feeling, and see everything from his perspective.
But I’ve learned over the past year what it really means to be able to miss someone. In order to miss someone, that means you were privileged enough to have them in your life to begin with.
I also liked seeing the after. What happens after Sky finally adjusts, and the truth is out in the open. What happens to Holder and what does he do with what he now knows about Les. I think that part of the book, at the very end, gave the readers, and Holder, the closure that we all needed. It was heart-breaking and absolutely perfect and I love Colleen Hoover for including it.
Colleen Hoover has this ability to create a whole world within her books: the places seem real, the characters pop out of the page, the situations present and the feelings and emotions described all made me FEEL. They made me CRY. They made me SMILE and LAUGH. This book was one of those novels that can grab you and suck you in, and then when it’s all said and done, you just don’t know what to do without yourself, except be happy that you were a part of it, you were in that story as much as Holder, Sky, and Colleen Hoover herself were. And boy am I happy that I decided to read Slammed back in December, and had the chance and the NEED to read all of Hoover’s other books, ’cause they have all been adventures (and emotional roller coasters) into her imagination and her stories. Now that both of the series have come to a close (?) I wonder what Ms. Colleen Hoover will come up with next, and I can’t wait to read it!
World Building: 5/5
GoodReads Rating: 4.70/5
The book is currently available only as an ebook (as of July 8, 2013). The paperback will be out in stores October 15, 2013.