Libby Carmichael has just met her Soulmate. It’s just too bad he’s behind bars.
When you only see the world in black and white until you meet yours, it's pretty easy to figure out when you’ve found your Soulmate. What Libby can't figure out is why fate,destiny, or the powers that be have decided that Andrew McCormack is her one, true match. Libby is smart, organized, and always has a plan for what's coming next. So when she sees Andrew for the first time and her world is instantly filled with color, she's thrown for a loop.
Namely because he's in a dingy grey jumpsuit.
And being booked into a juvenile detention facility.
Surely a boy who's been convicted of a headline-making, violent crime isn't who she’s meant to be with. There's no way she belongs with someone like that...right?
14+ due to adult situations
The officer monitoring visitation told everyone before we sat down our fifteen minutes would begin as soon as the prisoners entered. I told myself I wouldn’t waste any of them. I would jump in, start asking my questions and saying my piece, whatever that even is at this point, and be done with it. I would get my answers and then move on the best I could.
Of course every word I had planned, every word in the English language, vanishes into thin air now that we’re face to face.
And I can’t help but think just what a face it is.
He’s all hard lines and high cheekbones, with a strong jawline that’s both intimidating and somehow inviting at the same time. His cheeks and chin are covered in slight stubble, and the hair on his face isn’t quite as dark as what’s on his head. The dark brown, almost black curls fall over his ears and forehead, skimming a set of thick eyebrows pulled straight.
I follow all of the lines of him with my eyes, from the haphazard waves of his hair, down to the slight cleft in his chin, and I try to suppress the urge to shiver. Somehow, even wearing the awful, gray jumpsuit and sitting in this awful, gray room, he still manages to be brighter than anything else I’ve seen so far. It almost hurts to look at him.
My eyes start to water, and his, with their color I still haven’t managed to find a name for, narrow at me. In confusion? In irritation? I can’t tell. I swear there’s almost a glint to them, and I cock my head to the side to see if I can still see it from a different angle. The lines around his mouth tighten and I can tell from the tremor in his jaw he’s biting down hard on his back teeth.
And then I understand.
He’s looking at me like I’m an idiot. Because I’ve been staring at him like one. Like he’s some kind of an animal at the zoo. In a cage.
I drop my gaze to my lap and let out a breath that’s as shaky and unsure as the rest of me. It’s not a manipulation, but I still hope he sees it for what it is. That he understands I don’t think he’s some amusement or oddity to be observed and learn from.
Even though I do want to observe him and I do want to learn from him. I still don’t want him to look at me and think I’d be so … so rude. I don’t want him to … I don’t even know. Sitting here now, facing the reality of it, I can hardly keep my thoughts straight about anything. But mostly about him.
When I look back up, his gaze doesn’t waver from mine. I can feel my face heating, and now since I know exactly what color a blush is on my pale skin, I can picture the splash of pink spreading over my cheeks and down my neck. When he blinks, it almost feels like a reprieve. A very short reprieve.
I can’t decide if it’s anger or strength or something else entirely filling the air around him like something solid. But it’s there. It’s coming from his eyes, still and intense, and from the set of his broad shoulders, and it makes me feel … small.
And that actually makes me feel kind of pissed.
I straighten my shoulders and sit up taller. Anger is apparently a decent motivator, I think, and file the little tidbit away for future use.
I reach for the telephone on the counter and the borrowed bracelet slips out from underneath my sleeve. It hits the counter with a thwack that is probably louder to my ears than anyone else’s, and the muscles in my arm stiffen. I can’t help throwing a hurried glance over my shoulder. I exhale slowly when I see the guard has better things to do than inspect my jewelry. Thank God.
The receiver is cold when I bring it to my ear. Good grief, is everything in here always this chilly?
Our eyes meet through the glass. And nothing. No response. He doesn’t even make the slightest move toward the phone on his side. I never thought about this possibility. That he wouldn’t want to see me. Wouldn’t want to talk to me.
Oh God… What if he doesn’t even know why I’m here? What if he doesn’t see it?
I know when he couldn’t stop staring at me or my hair the other day, I took it as a sign he could see the colors, too, but what if I was wrong, wrong, wrong?
Would it be a bad thing? Would it be better?
Why didn’t I think of this?
The look on my face must be pretty pitiful because there’s a flash of something very akin to sympathy in his eyes as he sighs heavily and finally reaches for the phone. He holds it away from his ear for a second, rubbing the back of his neck with his free hand. I watch as his chest expands with another deep inhale, and he brushes his fingers harshly through his hair. Combing through the strands from back to front, it stands on end, but the finger-in-a-light-socket look doesn’t detract at all from the air of intensity he projects.
He puts the receiver up to his ear and there’s a beat of silence between us before I speak.
Nice, Libby. Real nice. Of course he’s Andrew. He knows this. You know this.
He doesn’t say anything. Probably because he’s too busy thinking the girl sitting across from him is some kind of socially inept moron.
He nods, the movement slight and succinct. There’s no hint of amusement on his face though, and the gesture makes me feel the slightest bit better.
I try again.
My voice sounds determined now. Strong.
Showing reviews 1-10 of 17 | Next
Posted by Savannah Evanoffon on 3rd Jan 2017
"What's a Soulmate?" is a creative novel exploring the possibility of soulmates. Libby, our main character, lives in a world where from the day you're born until you meet your soulmate, the world only consist of black, white and gray. It's natural, right? Or it was until Libby met Andrew, her soulmate. Suddenly she was thrown into a world of color, her hair vividly red as her personality.
I personally found this book to be magical in it's own way. The characters were well rounded in their development and not a detail was left unscathed. I enjoyed the atmosphere and the way the words flowed together. I as well enjoyed the detailed wording, it gave the book more feeling to it. It made the words flow off the page. All I truly didn't enjoy is how Libby treats Beth within the novel. Beth is supposed to be Libby's best friend but Libby can be very self centered irregardless of how her life is going. One more thing is just how the ending was, it was cute but I feel there could've been more detail and plot at the end.
"Maybe that's why I'm here," I say, realizing in this very moment what I'm about to say is the absolute truth. "To find out if you're better than this."
There was a variety of emotions that created a bond absentmindedly between Libby and Andrew. While there are slow part encased within this book, it's excellent in it's own right. This book gives a different reality from ours.The atmosphere crafts this novel into a work of art, it's detail oriented in a way. The world Libby lives in is similar and yet completely opposing to ours. This is a novel that will pull you in, I guarantee you that.
I very much so look forward to more from Lindsey Ouimet. I'm giving this a 4.4 out of 5 stars- I definitely recommend this to all those romantic people out there. You won't regret picking this book up! Caio!
Posted by LJF on 3rd Jan 2017
What's A Soulmate? The person who you are closer to than anyone else. It isn't always romantic- it can be a friend, a parent, a sibling- but when you meet your Soulmate, you know. The moment you see them, your world bursts into color- a startling change from the gray tones you've seen since birth. That is what a Soulmate is- that missing piece you've been searching for.
LIBBY CARMICHAEL knows that the odds of ever finding her Soulmate are slim- and certainly not before she turns twenty-five. But her parent's story should have taught her to expect the unexpected, because the moment she sees that boy- she sees color. The problem? She sees him as he is being led into the juvie center in handcuffs. It's going to take all of Libby's tenacity to figure out the truth of his arrest- but does she really want to know?
ANDREW McCORMACK doesn't want a Soulmate. He's seen what it did to his mother, and he has no intention of repeat her mistakes. Besides, considering what he's done, he doesn't believe he deserves one. But drew doesn't get a choice- because the moment that fiery red-head enters his line of sight, his life is changed forever. Can he accept the hand that fate has dealt him?
What is Drew's secret? What was his true crime? Will Libby be able to accept it- and Drew?
I LOVED this book. I adore "Soulmate stories" and the fact that color played such a huge role in it made it even better. I really like Libby's tenacity and style, and Drew's kindness. I will definitely be looking forward to more from this author.
Posted by Andreia on 3rd Jan 2017
I'm not a fan of romantic novels but this on grabbed my attention because of the idea. It has originality even if the theme of YA follows the usual pattern.
In a world where people only see things in black and white, the colours appear when you find your soulmate. So far so easy, and it becomes more easy when you find your that soulmate is in juvie for a very serious crime. Okay, maybe not that easy. How about, prove his innocence? But, is he truly innocent? Then why didn't he defend himself against the charges?
The style of writing kept me hooked to the pages and the storyline flows very nicely. The romance builds up from the beginning and it kept me anticipating when something would actually happen. The tension between the characters is very well described and I found myself thinking how would I react to a soulmate that is a real stubborn idiot that likes to offend people. However, the characters are very likeable. Libby is a strong female character that has a persistence of an army and only gets more fired up when she faces a challenge or a problem, which is exactly what she finds in Andrew, a wall of challenges and contradictions that will make her life very difficult. Andrew isn't what he seems. Behind the cold and indifferent attitude, he's tormented by the truth and refuses to open up to anyone.
I found that the end was a bit too predictable and long for what it was. It was really too much teenage-drama for me and a bit cliché. I would have liked to see a more mature approach since the whole adventure made the character face realities that go beyond adolescence.
In all, it was a fun, easy and quick read that will entertain. It's a debut novel but I think there definitely is potential. I recommend it.
Posted by D.A.H on 3rd Jan 2017
In Libby Carmichael's world, everything is in shades of gray--literally. People, cars, trees, the sun, all are in black, white, or somewhere in between. That is, until a person meets their Soulmate, and their life floods with color. They have to learn the shades of colors, how to mix and match them, how others see them or the things they wear.
But Libby can't focus on any of that for long, because it just so happens her Soulmate has been incarcerated, and she is desperate to find out how someone like Drew McCormack could be her Soulmate.
"What's a Soulmate" is a poignant contemporary YA romance with a small smattering of fantasy. At first, it was a little hard to get into, even when Libby sees her Soulmate for the first time. The plot moves at a very steady, almost slow pace from beginning to end, with the majority of the focus on Libby and how she feels about Drew and her situations, all while trying to uncover the mystery behind why he was locked up. There were times the prose reminded me I was reading because Libby would occasionally address the reader in a way that made it VERY obvious they were, in fact, reading and not just seeing the world through her eyes.
That said, by the time I finished the book, I was completely enthralled. For such a steady pace, Ms. Ouimet never lets up on the intrigue of Libby's bizarre and unnerving situation. Not to mention that every scene between her and Drew was intense, even in the moments Drew refused to speak. The tension between these two, even when separated between an inch and a half thick window, was palpable in every scene they spent together.
I love that Libby doesn't have an ENEMY, per se. The conflict is largely that Drew IS her Soulmate, and that the circumstances of his being locked up are not necessarily what they seem. Ms. Ouimet manages to convey it all through stellar prose, and though the pace remains steady and I initially had a hard time getting into it, I was completely immersed by the time I was 1/3 of the way through the novel. The little reminders of how most people only saw shades of gray were consistent, which was fantastic and kept me deeply ingrained into the world.
And, of course, I love that she did a stellar job with the Soulmate concept. Only one other author has attempted it without me rolling my eyes, and that is L.J. Smith in her Night World series. Ms. Ouimet takes a somewhat similar tact--that Soulmates only mean the person is connected to another--but also veers in a very different direction, ie, one person could be YOUR Soulmate, but that doesn't mean you are THEIRS. She also tackles the concept by showing us a world where many people do, in fact, find their Soulmates, but it's not all a happy ending. Ms. Ouimet manages to keep the Soulmate theory fresh, real, and heartbreaking all at the same time.
Libby is fantastic, a typical teenager, but also very level-headed even when she's making rash decisions. I love that she acknowledges her less-than-stellar choices but also doesn't make excuses for them for very long. She's that girl everyone would have wanted for a friend in high school--and that's a character type that is pretty much a prerequisite for me to give ANY author a solid 5 stars.
This is one novel I highly recommend to readers of all ages. It's poignant, has subtle intensity, and such rich, vibrant characters that, once done meeting them, you'd kick yourself for ever dreaming of passing up the opportunity to know them.
Posted by Chandler FOlk on 3rd Jan 2017
In a world where people see only in black and white until they meet their soulmate, Libby Carmichael is not too concerned with finding hers, until she locks eyes with juvenile inmate Andrew ("Drew") McCormack. A product of parents who are not "true" soulmates, Libby knows that being Soulmates does not automatically equate to love. Even so, Libby is willing to take a chance on Drew, choosing to believe in his goodness when even he cannot.
This is my first time reading a text from this author, and I was pretty impressed! The story was a little predictable at times, but was a light and easy read that was fairly entertaining. I was able to connect to Libby and Drew on a surface-level, but I feel the text would have benefitted with some more scenes of relationship-building between the two characters. More character depth for Drew would have also been nice! He seemed a little flat and lacking in most scenes. The concept of Soulmates was explained fairly well, but it would have been nice to have some more explanation on the idea such as: Is the connection between Soulmates magical or neurological? How deep does the connection and relationship run?why is connected to vision?
Overall, this book was a fun and quick read. It felt fresh and new. I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to enjoy a semi-real world with a cute love story.
Posted by Smiten with Books on 3rd Jan 2017
Libby isn't a hopeless romantic. She understands the odds are not in her favor, that only sixty percent of people find their soulmates, and even if you happen to find your soulmate, it doesn't mean you'll live happily ever after. So she's more than surprised when she's at the juvenile detention facility that her father works at and sees her soulmate, the boy that fills her life with color. She's not only surprised by the fact she finds her soulmate, but also by the fact that her soulmate happens to be in handcuffs. Can this really be the person the universe chose for her? But no matter how much Libby wants to ignore the fact that her life has officially changed, she needs answers. So she pretends to be a youth leader to visit Andrew so she can get to know him better. He's quiet and serious and he can also see color, which means she's his soulmate, too. But when Libby finds out what Andrew did and he continues to push her away, she wonders if she should just give up. But some things are complicated, and if Andrew is her soulmate, it must be for a good reason...right?
As soon as I read the summary for What's a Soulmate? on NetGalley, I instantly requested it. The premise is so unique compared to all the other young adult novels I've read since the world that Libby lives in is black and white. No one can see color until they see their soulmate for the first time. And even if you find your soulmate, it doesn't necessarily mean you'll live happily ever after, which is an intriguing concept. Some people can have a soulmate, but their soulmate may have a different soulmate, so there's different complications that can arise from this system, which made the story even more interesting. Libby is a great heroine—she's realistic and doesn't like to jump to conclusions. I liked that she tried to get to know Andrew better before she wrote him off and even after Andrew pushed her away time and time again, she came back to him. Andrew on the other hand was very quiet and it was hard to even get a good read on his character until half way through the story. But the added mystery that surrounded him made the relationship between Andrew and Libby even more interesting and dynamic. The only problem I had with the novel was that Andrew was a little one dimensional and therefore the romance lacked slightly, but other than that I absolutely loved the story.
I would definitely recommend What's a Soulmate? to anyone looking for a young adult romance with a unique premise. Although What's a Soulmate? is a young adult novel without any graphic sexual content, the characters and the story are gritty, so I would recommend it to older readers.
Posted by Alex on 3rd Jan 2017
First off....How pretty is that cover? It describes so beautifully what this book is about. Suddenly there are colors, after a life in black and white. Libby Carmichael has a 60/40% chance to find her soulmate and see her world in colors. Because only a true soulmate brings colors into your world. But when it happiness for Libby, he’s not what Libby has expected. Andrew McCormack is in juvie and nothing Libby wanted for her live.
This book was a great read, I was unable to put it down. Libby is a lovable character and I felt with Andrew and his little brother. The idea that a soulmate is so special that he/she literally changes the way you see your world, was really unique and I haven’t found a story like that in any other book out there. So, if you like reading books with a romantic plot, but still want to have something special, this is your book
Posted by ByJacqueline B Forman on 3rd Jan 2017
In this alternate reality everyone sees in black and white until they meet their Soulmate. Upon looking at your Soulmate your world is suddenly flooded with colors. Talk about overwhelming! But, Soulmate as a noun in this book does not mean what our reality defined a soulmate as. There is so much more. The statistics shared in the book indicate that only 60% of the population ever finds their Soulmate. Many people marry for love. Sometimes, your Soulmate is already married, or you are cis or bi and your Soulmate isn't someone you are interested in sexually. Sometimes, someone is your Soulmate and you aren't there's. It's complicated. And wonderful. This supposedly simple premise with very easy rules becomes a quagmire for Libby as this story unfolds.
Even if the premise wasn't so compelling, Libby is a brilliant narrator. Her voice alone might have sold me on this book. At seventeen years old, she is a self-conscious yet strong headed young woman. She questions everything, including herself, and isn't afraid to ask questions. But she doesn't always have the right answer and often feels awkward and out of place. She is snarky and passionate. And strangely relatable, while being nothing at all like me. In fact, I cannot remember the last time I read a book where I highlighted so many quotable lines.
Now, What's a Soulmate? certainly isn't perfect. At times, I felt like the pacing wasn't working for me. I felt like some scenes weren't necessary. But I was so absorbed in Libby's story that I didn't really care. What I liked most about the things I typically don't like (that's a weird statement…) is that while the elements of this story were predictable, they took an unpredictable way to get there. Plus all the characters are flawed in their appropriate stereotypes (bubbly best friend, stoic love interest, etc.), but their flaws are so much more realistic that the typical romance characters. Beth is bubbly and a bit self-absorbed, but also a glowing best friend. Andrew is surly and stoic, but we are given all the material we need to understand this is a product of being in Juvie. In the end, all this predictability along with the twists and turns makes for a lovely YA romance cocktail.
A shockingly good book, I spent a lot of time debating my star rating. I don't believe in half stars, just because Goodreads doesn't allow for that. However, I know I'll re-read this book some day when I need a lighthearted pick me up. 5 stars for general awesome; strongly recommended to lovers of YA, romance, and those in need of something mentally stimulating yet fluffy.
Posted by Amazon Customer on 3rd Jan 2017
Great contemporary YA romance. I love the idea of soulmates who don't necessarily fall in love at first sight.
Posted by Lina on 28th Nov 2016
What's a Soulmate? tells the story of a black and white world that fills with color once you meet your soulmate. Which is what happens to Libby, when she sees a guy in handcuffs being transfer to a juvenile detention facility, even if she doesn't want to believe it. This book is so easy to read, understand and to just feel.
What Libby goes through gave me all the feels and it wasn't only because of some love interest, but because of her relationship with her parents and friends. By the way I would definitely read her parent's story. Just saying... wink wink
I'm so glad that this book didn't disappoint me. I loved this story so much because the beginning was strong and the end was also so good. However I can't lie and say I didn't wish it were longer. Maybe a sequel ? pretty pretty please. I need more of their story in my life, although knowing this was a standalone was one of the things that interested me the most.
“you should know… Me not loving you might not be the end of your world, but it sure as hell would feel like the end of mine.”
Dear Lindsey Ouimet, this was the first book I ever read by you and I thank you immensely, because it was exactly what I needed to read at the time. This is one I will definitely re-read soon.
Showing reviews 1-10 of 17 | Next