Unrealistic Plot & Characters: Windfall by Jennifer E. Smith

Unrealistic Plot & Characters: Windfall by Jennifer E. SmithWindfall
by Jennifer E. Smith
Release Date: May 2nd 2017
Published by Delacorte Press
Genres: YA, Contemporary
Format: Audiobook
Length: 10 hrs and 7 mins
Pages: 418
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Source: Audiobook Received for Review

Let luck find you.

Alice doesn’t believe in luck—at least, not the good kind. But she does believe in love, and for some time now, she’s been pining for her best friend, Teddy. On his eighteenth birthday—just when it seems they might be on the brink of something—she buys him a lottery ticket on a lark. To their astonishment, he wins $140 million, and in an instant, everything changes.

At first, it seems like a dream come true, especially since the two of them are no strangers to misfortune. As a kid, Alice won the worst kind of lottery possible when her parents died just over a year apart from each other. And Teddy’s father abandoned his family not long after that, leaving them to grapple with his gambling debts. Through it all, Teddy and Alice have leaned on each other. But now, as they negotiate the ripple effects of Teddy’s newfound wealth, a gulf opens between them. And soon, the money starts to feel like more of a curse than a windfall.

As they try to find their way back to each other, Alice learns more about herself than she ever could have imagined…and about the unexpected ways in which luck and love sometimes intersect.

Audiobook Received for Review in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

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I’ve read books about vampires, walkers, shifters, fairies, dystopian worlds, goblins, droids, space battles, dragons and pretty much anything else mythical and make-believe you can think of… yet this contemporary book about a teen that wins the lottery was so unbelievable and unrealistic for me that it was hard to get past that point. Not only was the fact that a teenage girl happened to get allll the numbers of the lottery right unrealistic, but the characters were just so unrealistic and frankly annoying.

Alice lost her parents when she was nine years old, first her mom to cancer then her dad 13 months later to a car accident. She moved from California to live with her aunt, uncle and her cousin Leo. Fast forward 9 years and despite the fact that Alice and Leo are very close and that her aunt and uncle love her like she was their own daughter, Alice still thinks of California as her home and can’t help but feel like she doesn’t fit in with them… all of her own doing. Alice is in love with her and Leo’s longtime friend, Teddy, and for his 18th birthday she buys him a lottery ticket as a joke. Surprise, surprise she ends up getting all the lottery number picks right and after a mad scramble to look for the lottery ticket they accidentally threw away, they find it and their life changes forever.

Teddy was a douche, but I guess I kind of expected that. Winning 140 million dollars can really mess with a person and after his dad left him and him and his mom have spent years living in a tiny one bedroom apartment and living paycheck to paycheck, the newfound fame gets to his head. He buys extravagant gifts, takes the entire basketball team to Mexico for spring break and all that other usual useless stuff anyone would do if they hit the jackpot. As much as this annoyed me, he wasn’t even the worst part. Alice was. She was such a goody two shoes (she reminded me of Rory Gilmore, who I despise) and always acted like she was better than everyone. Despite the fact that she bought the ticket and chose the winning numbers, she doesn’t feel one bit jealous that Teddy won. At first I was thinking how unrealistic t would be, after all, even if I bought my mom, who I love,  a lottery ticket and she won as happy as I would be for her I would think I would still feel a tiny bit jealous. But not Alice, maybe she’s just a better person than me. *shrugs* Teddy, trying to do the right thing offers to split the jackpot with Alice, but she refuses. He offers to pay for her college, which she also refuses and he offers to give her any amount she feels comfortable with, which she also refuses. Her reasoning is that she doesn’t want things to change (too late) and she has her parents insurance money to pay for college. Well that’s all nice and good but what about her aunt and uncle and cousin who have taken care of her the last 9 years? Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to take care of them for once? What about all the volunteering she does to make herself feel like a better person than everyone else? Couldn’t she have done a lot of good with that money? I just found Alice extremely unlikable and unrealistic…

The romance was all over the place. Most of the time I was so annoyed by Teddy and is attitude, then the romance just happened out of nowhere towards the end and it just felt oh so convenient: an 18-year-old who just won the lottery to fall for his best friend who bought the ticket for him. At this point I have a higher chance believing the zombie apocalypse will happen over this. The story was cheesy and very predictable and sadly there were just too many things that annoyed me that kept me from enjoying this book. This is my first book by this author, which I have always stayed away from because they always seemed a bit cheesy, but so many people love her book so I decided to try it. Sadly, I think her books just aren’t for me though I hope other readers enjoy her stories.

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Nereyda is a 31 year-old mother of two girls with addiction to Friends, fashion, books, Pinterest, Netflix, the color black and a little bit of everything else. Also, the world's worst texter...