Wednesday, May 1, 2013

All This Could End by Steph Bowe.

Title- All This Could End.
Author- Steph Bowe.
Publish date- February 2013.
Publisher- Text Publishing.



What I thought:
All This Could End was a very enjoyable read for me- I found the characters to be very fun and I connected with them, it was quick and extremely fast reading for me, getting 150 pages read in a day without even working at it, and it came at the perfect time for me.

I found the Nina and Spencer, the protagonists, to be fun characters with a good amount of depth, something that I often find is lacking even in protagonists- they connect very quickly after their initial meeting (which I did find questionable because Nina makes sure she doesn't make lasting friendships and Spencer doesn't talk to people often) and I just wish there could have been more time spent with the two growing together. Instead, after their first day together it basically skips forward a few weeks and then continues to skip until a later point in time; I thought if it had gone more slowly, focused less on getting the plot to the spot in time it needed to be for the end scenes, which was December (the novel starting in December and then going backwards in time to April), or even had a shorter length of time to cover it would have been more enjoyable. Instead it did feel uncomfortably raced and the characters, I feel, could have been developed more than they were.
The characters themselves I found to be pretty awesome- Nina I had a few problems with, particularly towards the end with the choices she made and the way she looked at life, and I didn't think she had an awful lot of backbone, but I throughly enjoyed the trivia she learnt as a pastime. Also she refers to her conscience as being a "bitch" on the second or third page, which I enjoyed.
Spencer definitely took the place of favourite character; he loves words that aren't in the English language, lost words, words like Vergangenheitsbewaltigung, a German word that means "coming to terms with the past", and it's something I enjoy myself and I loved the fact that I recognised some of the words he spoke of.

I really like the feel of the cover, though I'm perplexed by the fact that the female, presumably supposed to be Nina, appears to be wearing some kind of life-jacket dress; it could be a dress, but the shoulders look like they've got a strange thickness to them, like shoulder pad thickness, so that didn't make much sense to be- one of my favourite things about this cover is that it actually has a link to the book; I'm not a huge fan of books that have a cover that then has nothing to do with the book, no matter how exquisite they are (okay, if they're really exquisite it won't bother me too much, but still), but the water scene pictured actually is in the book and that made me really happy. It's also in fairly soon in, so that was also a good point.

I don't like the main part of the synopsis, found online in a different form to what is shown on the back of the book, which I only just noticed, which suggests Nina's mother, who runs the bank heists, asks her children if they want to take part.
She does not ask. She presumes, she takes advantage of, and she does. not. ask. I'm glad that the book cover has it written truer to the story.

(I should probably note the heists, seeing as that's a fairly big part of the storyline- they didn't feature very prominently, recollections of past ones are mentioned and one actually takes place in the story. I certainly felt that it added an excellent and otherwise unexpected element to the story.)

I found this incredibly quick to read- I felt that the story was important and interesting and I really did enjoy it; there were points, as mentioned above, that I wasn't a massive fan of, but I was really pleased with it and enjoyed the reading experience a lot.

Rating: Excellent-
I really enjoyed this and can see myself re-reading it in the future; I liked the characters a lot and the storyline was fresh and interesting. It never quite managed to be an all out stunning read, but I don't regret reading it, it just never became overwhelmingly brilliant.

Thank you to Text Publishing for this review copy!


  1. I've read another of Steph Bowe's books - Girl Saves Boy - and had a similar overall feeling as what you say in your summary points - "it just never became overwhelmingly brilliant". Spencer sounds awesome though, so I will keep an eye out for this one, and see if I like it better. That's so odd how the online and back-of-book summaries are different. I wonder why they didn't just go with "made" for both, especially if that fits better with the actual story?
    Also, I think that cover looks like a movie poster/screen shot. There's just something... and I can't quite put my finger on it... *eyes cover*

    1. I've had that one out from the library a few times but could never get into it- thinking about it I actually think this one is about younger teens, and is thus written for a slightly younger audience.
      Spencer is a pretty neat character- I'd be really interested to hear what you thought if you get to reading it! I do recommend you pick it up, especially as it's nice and quick reading! (:
      The cover does seem familiar- it reminds me a little of the indoor pool scene in Unspoken, with Kami and Jared, though it also feels very "Hollywood party" esq.

  2. AHAHA! I was actually honestly going to say "Yes, I can see how the cover of a girl in a pool relates to the story of robbing banks with your mother and little brother. Yes." But clearly you have anticipated my doubt and told me that it IS relevant, though I think if I had seen this cover A) I would not be interested but B) after seeing how much it contradicts the blurb I would DEFINITELY not be interested. but I'm glad it does have an actual point.

    I like the idea of the random trivia and the forgotten words (though again, there's nothing in the blurb or cover to indicate that (It's an epic pet peeve of mine, it induces RAAAAAGE, as do so many other things))but I've never been that grabbed by the concept of heists. I saw those movies with Brad Pitt and George Clooney, I've seen the one with Clive Owen and Denzel Washington, I've read Heist Society, each time it just feels "meh" though I honestly could not tell you why.

    But it's interesting that in this case she's forced into it, certainly a twist on the standard "I'm greedy" or "I've got bad gambling debts so instead of being kneecapped I'm going to rob the Louvre".

    1. Also: I don't know what relevance any of that is, but it's out there now for all the interwebs to puzzle over so oh well. :)

    2. Her father is also a history teacher, and he robs banks too. All robbers need a good, steady job, you know. (how do I know that, how do I know that)
      Yes, for a time I wondered how it worked, and though I don't much like the image itself I like how it works with the colours and font/text, so overall I quite like it, but it wouldn't have been a good point it it had made NO sense.
      I have not seen any of those movies, though I did see a few of the MI's and that one called National Treausure, though I don't think it's quite the same. I did like Heist Society, though.

      I'm going back to my first point- yes they're forced into it but the father works. A teacher. Good money, me thinks. Interesting plot twist there, because it is there.

  3. Nina sounds like such an amazing person that I might be able to relate if I got to know her and her background more. Spencer also sounds so sweet and wordy guys are my thang. ;D Random talk but Dash in Dash and Lily's Book of Dares (if you haven't read it already) is very bookie person. :D

    Even though your said the synopsis didn't really fit well, I think it's a catcher because when I heard that they were stealing banks, it made me read on to your review (even without the synopsis i would still be reading your review Romi!) a little more excited to see if I should pick it up or not. And I'm glad you clarified the cover! I was wondering how bank robbing then Spencer then a random water scene? Dwat?! XD

    1. In one way I'd be a little worried if you did relate to her, because she robs banks and all, but the's generally pretty great in personality. So long as you're not robbing banks. (:
      Ah yes- LOVED Dash and Lily!
      If you read it, I'd love to hear your thoughts! x


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