Cover Image: Chasing Fireflies

Chasing Fireflies

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

Rainey is a sweet, shy seventeen year old girl who loves her family more than anything - especially her little sister Maverick, who was born with a heart defect.  Liam is a troubled seventeen year old boy who is trying desperately to escape the hand he was dealt in life.  Rainey and Liam meet when they sit next to each other in math class.  Coming from two completely different backgrounds, is it possible for them to develop a friendship, or even more?

This was a beautifully told story about friendship, family, and young love.  It was also a heartbreaking story about bullying, classism, abuse, and being medically fragile.  Throughout this story I laughed, frowned, smiled, and cried.  The characters touched my heart and I felt their emotions with them.  

Grab a box of tissues, get comfortable, and enjoy this heartfelt novel. 

Thank you to #NetGalley for an ARC of #ChasingFireflies by #ChloeFowler.  4.5 stars rounded to 5
Was this review helpful?
A nice book for teen romance, but can still be improved. As a person with a very short attention span, which has nothing to do with the author, I find it hard to focus to some parts of the book.
Was this review helpful?
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for allowing me to read this book.
"Chasing Fireflies" follows the lives of Rainey Collins, a high school senior and older sister to Maverick,who lives with a defective heart and no guarantees for her future. She does well after several surgeries, and  is the  main focus of the family.

By "chance", enters Liam Hayes into the life of Rainey, a young man whose focus and goal is  to escape a challenging home situation,  Somewhat of a loner, Liam  hopes to finish school, so he can escape his homelife., which is based in a trailer outside of town.  

Taking a vacant seat next to Rainey begins this unlikely couple's journey.  As they  start to talk and get to know one another, their romance slowly develops,  and even though Maverick's heart is not healthy in a medical sense, it is bursting with joy at the romance! 

This book is rich with beauty and the  relatable characters draw the reader in, right to the unexpected ending. To Rainey and  Liam they learn how to love in the face of challenging situations, loss, and hope. 
Although this book is categorized as a young adult novel, it  will be loved by adults as well, with life lessons that are ageless and important to remember.   This book will stay with you as it is thought provoking and emotional.  Tissues, please!
Was this review helpful?
I received a copy of this book from the publisher via netgalley in exchange for an honest review. 

This book was not what I was expecting. I was expecting a cute YA romance with a dash of heavier topics sprinkled throughout and what I got was a pretty heavy book with a cute teen romance sprinkled throughout. The fact is the issues in the book are issues that kids have to face and deal with and I thought the author did a good job of humanizing the characters. 

Trigger warnings: bullying, violence, domestic violence, parental abuse/neglect
Was this review helpful?
Really strong writing for a debut author! This book caught my attention right away, and held it the whole way through. Very strongly written characters. Overall a solid read, perfect for any YA collection.
Was this review helpful?
When I requested this book, I expected it to just be a regular ya romance but as I was reading it I realised that it’s more than that. Rainey, the female mc, was so sweet and I like how it showed the effect that her sisters serious heart problem has on her, as people often think these things only affect the person with the condition, Liam, the male mc, was also super sweet and generous which was nice to see as I think a lot of ya is full of selfish teenagers so this book provided a breath of fresh air. 

The plot was a bit predictable towards the end but it still made me emotional. It was just an overall nice read, not amazing but still enjoyable.
Was this review helpful?
Chasing Fireflies is a debut YA novel that follows Rainey and Liam, two teens from opposite walks of life who fall in love. I found it to be more coming-of-age than romance, and quite a heavy read even though I'd expected that from the synopsis.

I really felt for Rainey and Liam, especially when it comes to their family and the various predicaments they find themselves in. The struggles they face are so human and made me think about how fortunate I am in comparison.

While the story was engaging, I did wish all of the characters were more developed. The book mentions how "no one is wholly good or wholly bad", but I found most of the characters (particularly the two main leads and their peers) to be rather one-dimensional. I liked Carson a lot and think he had a lot of potential.

Some of the themes in the book are also quite distressing. I was a bit uncomfortable with the extent of bullying and sabotage, and think they could have been handled better.

Overall, a great debut and I look forward to more from the author!
Was this review helpful?
Rainey Collins has been told countless times that everything happens for a reason in regards to her sister’s heart defect. The possibility of losing her sister leaves Rainey scared to imagine her future. On her first day of senior year, she sits beside Liam Hayes who is rumored to come from a troubled family but she decides not to judge him based on that which leads her begin picturing her future.

Usually I’m not one for YA romances but this ended up being so much more than I expected. It gave me hope and broke my heart at the same time. I was sobbing at the end of this book. Chloe Fowler did an incredible job unpacking grief and showing how we should give everybody a fair chance.
Was this review helpful?
This one was a very sad but realistic read. Also the ending nearly broke my heart but it was perfect! I didn't know a lot about this book before going into it, i thought it was going to be your typical YA romance between two high school students and the life that comes with it, for example minor struggles, but i was so wrong there was a lot more to it. Plus it definitely made me think and question a lot to do with life and death, and other serious matters. This story was written beautifully and was very emotional.
Was this review helpful?
I would like to say thank you to netgalley and author/publisher for the opportunity to read this book early. 
At first I wasn't sure if I would enjoy chasing fireflies or was it too young adult for me. But I will say this book kept me interested through out the whole book and when it ended it broke me. I even have tears right now. Liam and Rainey were not a pair that you would expect. But faith brought them together and they quickly bonded. Liam being from what people would call wrong side of the tracks. Life has a funny way though of changing at the drop of a dime which is a stark reminder to grab a hold of those you love and never let them go because well bad things happen. I don't want to spoil the story but I will say the ending really had me moved to tears. 
There was a quote in the book that also moved me. "no one is wholly good or wholly bad, We all have a bit of both in us we all struggle to find our way. So true, if you think looking on the outside someone has the perfect life, think again, because no one is perfect. 
Such a great book, I will definitely look for more from this author. Be sure and grab your copy because it is available now at a book store near you.
Was this review helpful?
“Im Not sure I can bear it.. I’m afraid. I’m afraid I’ll just crumble into a million little pieces and get blown away by the wind, and all the kings men won’t be able to put me back together again.”
It was quiet for a moment, the enormity of my looming grief pulsing like a living beast, waiting to burst out of my chest.
“If that happens, and you crumble into a million little pieces, I’ll pick up every single one, and I’ll hold you in my hands so you don’t get blown away.” -chasing fireflies page 284

This started out as ‘just another’ love story, just another cute troubled boy and nice, shy girl meet and fate happens. This ended as a story that captured my heart, will stay in my heart forever. A boy named Liam who is literally oh so perfect (but with a troubled life), and of a girl named Rainey who views the world from such extraordinary lenses  that I can’t help but relate and love her. Rainey has a sister named Maverick with a heart issue who feels so very real and uniquely herself, and I love her outgoing and sassy attitude, and I feel for how much Rainey loves her. A ‘ordinary’ story that is uniquely its own, with such a twist.
Was this review helpful?
Chasing Fireflies – Chloe Fowler

Rainey Collins is an upper middle class high school senior and older sister to Maverick, a precocious ‘tween’, with a ticking time bomb inside of her – a defective heart. Maverick was born with what’s called hypoplastic heart syndrome and has required several heart surgeries to date. While she continues to do well, there are no guarantees for her future – every day is a gift – and thus she remains the sole focus of the entire family. 

Liam Hayes is a young man who desperately wants to escape a hopeless home situation and does his best to stay out of reach Ray, his mother’s significant other. A bit of a loner, Liam just hopes to finish school, so he can escape his miserable homelife.  For Liam, home is a rundown trailer on the outskirts of town. 

Running late to his first class of the morning, he takes a vacant seat next to Rainey. Later that afternoon, Rainey chances to see Liam defend a student from a duo of bullies, Carson & Chase, and realizes there’s much more to him than most see is quickly intrigued. As the two start to talk and get to know one another, a romance slowly blossoms, much to little sister Maverick’s delight! 

A beautifully written story, rich in detail, with relatable characters and a stunning and unexpected ending. Told alternately by Rainey & Liam as they learn how to love in the face of adversity, change, loss, and hope, this story will give you all the feels. Marketed as a young adult novel, but will easily be loved by adults as well, who may re-live some of their own high school experiences. I highly recommend!   Oh – be sure to have some Kleenex nearby…

5 stars – I would give it 6 if I could!!  

I received this book as an Advance Reader Copy from #Netgalley, in exchange for an objective review.
Was this review helpful?
I received a free arc of this book via netgalley in exchange for my honest review.

Worlds collide when Rainey Collins meets Liam Hayes during first period math class. On the surface the two seem unlikely to be friends, much less likely to be lovers. But as they open up to one another a tale woven with compassion, understanding, and recognition leads to the establishment of hope and optimism in a world where there is very little. 

Chasing Fireflies has a solid premise and great potential but is wanting in character development and story arc. The first half of the novel feels rushed and the characters are poorly developed. However, throughout the novel the reader is able to gain perspective on each character, enough to fill in the gaps, and being to develop connections to each character’s individual circumstance. 

The dialogue between teenagers also feels too advanced and much more like scholarly conversations at times. The characters seem to abandon the need to elevate their language towards the end of the novel leading to a much more enjoyable read. 

The true gem of this novel are the relationships formed between the characters and how those relationships influence the story line. Once invested in the characters, the reader will find it difficult to stop reading. The relationships range from loving sisters, to hateful step parenting, abusive relationships, and friendships that straddle the boundary between platonic and romantic. What might seem like too much actually provides more depth and complexity to not only the characters, but the story. 

Very few novels make me emotional. This one left me with my heart in my throat. The twist at the end was not expected, I had predicted something completely different and it left me utterly gutted. 

I so loved this book after reading it and found myself wanting to know more about what the characters were doing after the events unfolded.. 

This story is the debut novel from Chloe fowler, and it is a young romance filled with optimism for characters who face many adversities and a twist that will leave you speechless.
Was this review helpful?
Thank you netgalley for a copy of this book for an honest review. Rainey has always felt blessed to have a little sister even if the little sister takes all her parents attention because she has a heart disease that makes her really sick at times. When Rainey meets Liam Hayes she never knew that she would fall so fast in love. All Liam wants to do is keep his Skeltons in closet because of Rainey knew she wouldn't think he was all that great. 
I loved this read was a really great book with enjoyable characters.
Was this review helpful?
Rainey is just trying to finish high school.  Her younger sister has a heart defect and has to be homeschooled.  Both are envious of what the other has.  When LIam sits beside Rainey on the first day of school in math class, she is intrigued by him.  As her crush grows, his own problems grow as well.  Being from the wrong side of town, Liam does not want to bring Rainey down with him even though he is interested in her.  However, her interest continues to grow.
Opinion
This book is a big roller coaster of emotions.  If you do not want to wear your heart on your sleeve while reading a book, best to leave this one on the shelf.  I had to face people immediately after reading an emotional scene and ended up throwing on sunglasses to hide the fact that the book got to me so much.
This book is a great read and I'd recommend it to anyone really but especially those who like an underdog story.  Be careful though, it doesn't end up like you will want it to and you will scream at Chloe Fowler for writing it that way.
Many thanks to Net Galley for providing me with an ARC of this book.
Was this review helpful?
I honestly don’t know what to say about this book. It wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t the best either. I feel like if you scrolled through Netflix’s teen romance dramas, you would probably find a lot of movies like Chasing Fireflies. The writing was actually very good and engaging, but as I was reading the book, I was almost having flashbacks of all the books I’ve read and movies I’ve seen that were exactly like the story portrayed here, with only a few tweaks.

I wish I enjoyed this one more, but since I liked the writing so much I look forward to read more from the author in the future.
Was this review helpful?
The Review

Wow, what an emotional roller coaster. The author did such a beautiful job of layering this YA contemporary romance novel with not only drama, but gripping themes of hope in the face of adversity, when one door closes another one opens, and opening ourselves up to new possibilities. The atmosphere and tone felt realistic and heartbreaking to read and watch come to life. 

What defined the heart of this narrative was the character development of the protagonist and the supporting cast. So many readers will be able to relate to these characters and their struggles, from protagonist Rainey and her budding romance with Liam while struggling with her sister’s failing health, to Liam and his hardships with his abusive stepfather and his natural distrust of people overall. The characters felt like they could just walk right off the page and into our lives, making this a truly engaging story.

The Verdict

Emotional, heartfelt, and gripping in the narrative’s delivery, author Chloe Fowler’s “Chasing Fireflies” is the tear-inducing YA Contemporary Romance/Drama that readers never knew they needed this fall. The shocking twist in the main characters and their story will have readers left with tears in their eyes and highlights the impact that people can have on our lives overall.
Was this review helpful?
I enjoyed parts of this but also found some parts to be abit… off.
Some of the dialogue felt as if they were appropriate for older characters, not teenagers. Also some situations felt very cliche, especially the way that Becca was written. The premise of the story is good, I just don’t think the author has 100% pulled it off in a realistic way.
Was this review helpful?
Chasing Fireflies is a new YA novel by Chloe Fowler. It is a story about a young girl named Rainey Collins and part of her senior year in high school. While a lot of this book was cute flirtation, sibling love, and high school friendships, there was also a lot of over the top drama and a plethora of YA novel cliches. Chasing Fireflies is predictable in its entirety. It almost felt like I had read this book before because of how many cliches I recognized from other media. Unfortunately, I think that really took away from the originality and the potential engagement of the novel. There was also a lot of problematic behavior throughout the book from multiple characters that never really got addressed or dealt with with any sense of consequence. While parts of it were still sweet and emotionally moving, the predictability of Chasing Fireflies was disappointing. Even the fallout from the biggest plot twist in the book was predictable. 
Cliches and predictability aside, I do think the main characters, Rainey and Liam were both quite well written. The way they interacted with supporting characters and with each other really helped progress their character development and made you want to see them together and happy. The relationship between Rainey and her sister, Maverick, was one of my favorites in this book. Their sisterly bond was so sweet, and the dialogue between them was fun and witty. It feels like “life is short” is what we are supposed to take from this book, and while it took awhile to make that point, overall, it was well made. Even though the story itself was rather banal, the characters are what really shine and make this novel an emotional narrative on first love and loss. 
2.5 stars
Was this review helpful?
Wonderful debut novel. I enjoyed reading it and will definitely be on lookout for more by author. Thanks to publisher and NetGalley for allowing me to read this book!
Was this review helpful?