Book Review: Hopeless

Hopeless (Hopeless #1)
by Colleen Hoover
ebook, 332 pages
Published December 19th 2012
Source: Won
Sometimes discovering the truth can leave you more hopeless than believing the lies…

That’s what seventeen-year-old Sky realizes after she meets Dean Holder. A guy with a reputation that rivals her own and an uncanny ability to invoke feelings in her she’s never had before. He terrifies her and captivates her all in the span of just one encounter, and something about the way he makes her feel sparks buried memories from a past that she wishes could just stay buried.

Sky struggles to keep him at a distance knowing he’s nothing but trouble, but Holder insists on learning everything about her. After finally caving to his unwavering pursuit, Sky soon finds that Holder isn’t at all who he’s been claiming to be. When the secrets he’s been keeping are finally revealed, every single facet of Sky’s life will change forever.


I have only read one novella (Finding Cinderella) and two novels (this and Slammed) by the author so far, but I am already getting the gist of Colleen's style. Colleen's fondness of unconventional characters makes hers unique and fun. They always have quirky personalities but at the same time, they have depth and substance. However, they also tend to be more odd and sometimes they come off as unrealistic and trying hard to be different for me. 

Having been adopted by her foster mother, Karen, when she was five, Sky had no memories of her biological parents prior to her adoption, all she knew was that her father couldn't take care of her any longer as a kid so she was sent to be adopted. Karen is a really cool foster mom and she reminds me of Laken's mother in Slammed. She also hates technology so Sky grew up without TV, cellphone and Internet. Sky was also home schooled for the most part of her school life until senior year when Karen finally let her enrol in public school. This is supposed to make her socially challenged but I'm surprised that she can handle herself well amid the high school drama. But then again, she had been trained by her best friend, Six, who introduced her to boys and to cellphone and probably the Internet as well. Even though Six is not physically present for the majority of the book, she still managed to be the bestest friend to Sky and I so love their unorthodox best friendship! Speaking of Six, if you've read my review of Finding Cinderella, I just want to report that I am finally getting used to her name. :) 

The second thing I noticed about Colleen is that she has quite the liking for insta-romance. I cannot stress enough how much I dislike insta-love. Although Sky has been with plenty of boys before, she never really got attracted to them. Even when they kiss her, the only emotion Sky feels is numbness. But guess what happens when she first laid eyes on Holder? She was captivated, obviously. Holder is the town's bad boy who reportedly got sent to juvi for beating a gay. He has quite a depressing past but I didn't really feel for him. I like that he's very supportive of Sky though. He respects her decisions even when he's against it. However, Holder is also full of contradictions and I hate that after he promised Sky that he would never lie to her or answer her questions with vague explanations, it was exactly what he always did. 

I had no intention of reading Hopeless before, but Finding Cinderella was an enjoyable read, so I tried. Hopeless is not a bad book per se. Colleen has unique and unpredictable plot ideas and I appreciate that. Hopeless just touches on some particular subjects that I am the least comfortable with and hope to never read again. It is not as light as Finding Cinderella or Slammed which I was expecting the weight of the drama to be around like. I don't usually read heavy books, so I guess I was just shocked by the revelations Hopeless has in store. Even three days after reading this, I still cannot fully grasp the events that transpired. That's another thing Colleen likes in her works, it seems: surprises. As in major surprises. She'll drown you with funny characters and mushy romantic scenes first and when you start getting comfortable and giddy over them, she'd drop the bombs. Emphasis on the "s" because she doesn't just surprise you with one revelation but lots of them and it's always a "where-the-hell-did-that-come-from" moment. To most readers, it's a brilliant plot device but to me it's a WTF plot device that leaves me dumbfounded in a not so very good way.

Rating: 2.5/5 stars


  1. Wooops! I also didn't like this one compare to the /majority/. It really didn't work no matter how much I push further. Sigh. Insta-loooooove. Sigh.

    Great review, Chel!

    1. Aw sorry you didn't like this too, Abby, but I'm also glad I'm not the only one. ;)

  2. It was so interesting to read your thoughts on this one Chel, I almost never see a less-than positive review for a Colleen Hoover book, so it was nice to get a differing opinion. I haven't read anything by her before but I would like to, though I'm glad to know about the insta love upfront. I'm not a fan of insta-love either so that could be problematic, but every once in a while it will work for me. I'm curious to see if this might be one of those times. Thanks for the review!

    1. Thanks Jenny! Sometimes it's also a bit disheartening to be the only one who thinks differently about a book. :( But other than the insta-love in her books, Colleen is actually a good writer. I hope you enjoy her books!

  3. I'm sad you didn't love this one as much as I did but it can't be for everyone :) I hate insta love but for some reason I didn't have any problems with his one. I could feel their connection. It's all about how much I connect to the romance, I find. On another note I really have to read Finding Cinderella!!

    1. Well, that much is true and I'm glad you liked this Giselle! I also dislike insta-love but there are some books I read with insta-love that I still ended up liking, too bad this is not an exemption though.

  4. Hey, I'm with you on the insta-love! I'm no fan of it either. It was interesting reading your thoughts for this one because it seems like almost everyone raved over it... but I'm not sold on the fact that it would be the book for me. The insta-love would be a major issue and I think the unrealistic characters, as well. Maybe I could try the author's writing by way of novella first, see if I take to it, and if I want to read more. Anyways, you've given me lots to think about! Great review, Chel.

    1. Thanks Aylee! Finding Cinderella has insta-love too but I hope you enjoy it!


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