Books | Sometimes It Happens by Lauren Barnholdt

Long-term readers of my ramblings will know that I'm a sucker for a good YA (young adult) novel and my latest read definitely fits right into that genre: 'Sometimes It Happens' by Lauren Barnholdt. I should also note that quick-read books (i.e. books that I find myself flying through and finishing in a mere handful of sittings) hold a special place in my heart, which partially explains my love affair with this particular novel.

Lauren Barnholdt takes authorship for this novel and this is another book that confirms my ever-growing love for her literary works. I adored her novels Two-Way Street and One Night That Changes Everything and I'm hoping to get my hands on a fair few more of her titles in the coming weeks.

'Sometimes It Happens' follows a single summer in the life of Hannah and is centred around (as the title suggests) the repercussions and regrets of a single night. To lay it out simply; Hannah has a rather awful breakup and, just when she needs her the most, her best friend Ava runs off to spend the whole summer working at a holiday camp. In her pit of despair Hannah ends up running for comfort into the arms of Noah, Ava's boyfriend. Although they have a relatively platonic relationship throughout the vast majority of the novel (which runs the course of their summer break and into the start of the new school year), one night one thing leads to another and everything changes. As someone whose current relationship did indeed begin as a friendship and evolve, this concept was something that I could definitely relate to on a strong level; minus the cheating element of the novel of course as we were both indeed single, don't you worry.

Typically a book that has cheating at the heart of its plot would leave me and my morals running for the hills, but for some reason this story got me hooked. I do believe it has something to do with Barnholdt's impeccable characterisation skills, presenting every single character with a layer of depth that you don't often come across within YA literature. I grew very quickly to despise the character of Ava, a character who quite clearly held the belief that the entire world revolved around her. I also loved Hannah's narration of the events as she was incredibly honest about the reality of the situation, there was no sugar-coating to make herself look or feel better.

I just adore the structure of this book. It's told in alternating timelines: one depicting the events of the first day of Hannah's senior year, and one featuring flashbacks to the summer just gone. With each flashback Barnholdt reveals more and more of the secrets of the summer, providing an explanation for the unravelling events of the first day of school. Using such a structural technique adds such a wonderful element of suspense to the tale and leaves you practically begging Barnholdt to let you know more, which definitely contributes to this novel's status as a particularly quick-read; you're bound to read it ever so quickly if you simply can't put it down.

Overall Lauren Barnholdt has written a wonderfully gripping, humorous tale that would be just perfect if you're after a simple, easy read covering those typically-teenage topics such as sex, relationships, heart break and friendships. 

Have you been getting your nose into any good titles lately?


  1. Oh this book sounds really good!
    I'm always looking for new books to read and this one seems to be within the genre that I like!


  2. I love the fact all of this takes place in one summer! Looks like a fab book x


  3. This book looks like something that I wouldn't usually pick up but you made it sound really interesting. I might have to give it a read. I've been in a bit of a reading slump recently so I'm looking for books to get me out of it!