A Thousand Boy Kisses by Tillie Cole
I have been staring at this blog post in my drafts box for almost a week. I thought I was going to be over the moon about this one and I wasn’t. I was disappointed however, the more I think on the story the more I didn’t hate it. I would say it’s more of a 3.5 star book rather than a 3 star book.
This story is about Poppy & Rune. At the age of 5 Rune moves in next door in the room opposite Poppy’s and they are best friends instantly. Poppy then receives a boy kiss jar from her Mamaw (thank goodness I watch Raising Hope or I’d have had no idea how to pronounce that) at the age of 8. The kiss jar is filled with paper hearts that she’s supposed to write down all the super special boy kisses in. The reasoning behind the jar is Mamaw’s fondest memories of Poppy’s Pawpaw are all his kisses they shared together and how much the ones where her “heart almost burst” meant to her. She wanted to share that with her granddaughter. I thought this was incredibly endearing and original.
Here’s where I start to get iffy. At the same young age of 8 Rune gives Poppy her first boy kiss. The kiss itself didn’t bother me, having an 9 year old boy, I know girls is something that he thinks about it, however, i know he doesn’t think “forever always” when he thinks about them. After that kiss and for the rest of the book they are so in love. They are kids and it seemed a little to unrealistic.
Poppy & Rune grow to age 15 and then Rune has to move back to Oslo, Norway. They are both heartbroken. Rune vows to hate his Pappa and Poppy throws herself into her schooling until she cuts of all contact with Rune for two years with no explanation as to why. Two years later Rune moves back with a whole new rebel without a cause attitude and is trying to unravel what went wrong. He’s definitely not my dream guy, long blonde hair, all black clothing, skinny jeans, boots, way to emo for me. And Poppy really seemed like she was stuck in her 8 year old self. She was constantly wearing giant bows in her hair. Maybe I’ve been in the 2000’s for too long but teenagers, especially seniors do not do that. It’s way too much innocence in this day and age. Unrealistic.
I very much enjoy descriptive writing. I like to know what colors, smells, and sounds the characters are seeing, smelling, and hearing. I like to know everything. It’s what attracts me to reading in the first place. I feel transported into that world for the time I’m reading. Ms. Cole’s descriptions of the world around them was wonderfully written. I wanted to be in that Blossom field. I could almost smell it and feel the sun and wind on my face. I loved the way she described Poppy playing the cello and the way Poppy felt while playing and what the music itself did to her.
(I actually looked up Bach’s Cello Suites to listen to while I read. Now it’s my go to music for when I’m at work and need to concentrate but would like music too.)
Overall I’d say it was a good story, I just felt as if it was a little too much, “I love you so much forever and always” for me and I’m a sap. Like this quote
When you’re near, my heart doesn’t sigh, it soars.
What? I mean I just couldn’t get past it. It was lines like that over and over. It didn’t really seem believable.
I did cry but I didn’t cry those big fat ugly tears everyone keeps talking about. I also didn’t enjoy the epilogue. I love happily ever afters as much as the next reader but I don’t always feel the story has to go there. Sometimes stories end sad, it’s part of life. I felt this epilogue was a little to perfectly wrapped in a neat little bow. It annoyed me, a lot.
I’m definitely going to try another Tillie Cole book. I enjoyed her writing style and even though I wasn’t over the moon for Rune & Poppy and their journey, I did like them and I rooted for them. I feel like her writing is definitely worth another try.