Review: It Only Happens in the Movies by Holly Bourne


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Audrey is over romance. Since her parents’ relationship imploded her mother’s been catatonic, so she takes a cinema job to get out of the house. But there she meets wannabe film-maker Harry. Nobody expects Audrey and Harry to fall in love as hard and fast as they do. But that doesn’t mean things are easy. Because real love isn’t like the movies…
The greatest love story ever told doesn’t feature kissing in the snow or racing to airports. It features pain and confusion and hope and wonder and a ban on cheesy clichés. Oh, and zombies… YA star Holly Bourne tackles real love in this hugely funny and poignant novel.

Firstly, hi on a Saturday! I know I usually post Stacking the Shelves on a Saturday but as I haven’t bought books this week (yay for self control), I thought I would post this. I’m really sorry if this is one-too-many reviews for a week but honestly, if I don’t post this right now I’m going to just have a backlog of reviews as I’m reading quicker than I can post! Which is awesome!

So onto this book, and I had mixed feelings about even buying this in the first place. I remember reading Am I Normal Yet? and finding the voice of the MC a little too young for me, and I was scared about this happening again. But I would say It Only Happens in the Movies had a slightly older feel.

“Love isn’t just a feeling. Love is a choice too.”

Overall, I really enjoyed this book and I can see why it has so much praise. It’s just very real in many aspects – romance, friendship, sex, growing up, parent troubles, moving from home..everything.

But I can’t help it, I have these niggles, and I wish I didn’t but I just did. For one, I didn’t like Audrey all the time. She was just so damn angsty and constantly angry, and I know it was because of her circumstances but she’d just like blow up for no reason? It also annoyed me when she didn’t seek help for either her or her mum, even though she knew how much she was going through, she just isolated herself instead. Another really important point I’d like to make is something I read in another review – if the same thing that happened to Harry happened to Audrey at the end of the book, it would be a completely different story.

“And you may not be able to help your feelings, but you are responsible for the choices you make about what to do with them.”

But even though I did have some little annoyances, I actually mostly enjoyed reading this book. It was a little cliche for me, but Audrey was a really strong feminist character who I looked up to and loved her strength. I felt how relatable this book was, and even told my friend about it who had been through a very similar experience to Audrey. I felt like this alone tells everyone how important this book is.

3.5 stars


May your shelves forever overflow with books! ☽

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4 thoughts on “Review: It Only Happens in the Movies by Holly Bourne

  1. itsareaderslife

    I tried to read Soulmates by Holly Bourne but never finished it because I found it a little immature. I’ve been thinking about reading this book for a while though, maybe it will be more up my street. Great review😊

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: July Wrap-Up and August TBR

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