100 Days of Sunlight

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 15 Nov 2019

Member Reviews

100 days is approximately the amount of time that Tessa will be without her eyesight. After a traumatic car accident, Tessa Dickinson temporarily loses her vision. Her grandparents attempt to place an ad in the local paper for a typist so Tessa can continue her blogging and keep her connected to the outside world but the person who shows up turns in to so much more. Weston Ludovico has a stunning smile, endless optimism and no legs. The two form an important friendship and show one another that not only does a disability not define you but that even at your lowest point, there is still love, hope and sunlight to hold on to. 

I really enjoyed the overall premise and story of the book. There were times that I absolutely felt myself rolling my eyes at all of the teenage feelings but then I reminded myself that this IS a YA book and I was able to quickly move on. At the times the story felt a bit disjointed and I wanted the connections of the story between Tessa's blindness and her friendship with Weston and his own story of losing his legs and overcoming those obstacles to flow together a bit better. The story and information was all there but I wasn't impressed with the way they were joined together to make the story feel cohesive. The characters were also a bit underdeveloped and I would have loved to know more about Tessa pre-blindness. 

I would definitely recommend this book to teen girls that love warm and fuzzy stories. I do love that it touched on teens with disabilities and instead of seeing them from an outside observer perspective, you were put right there in their thoughts and feelings. 100 Days of Sunlight was an unexpected but enjoyable read!
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I feel like this was a good and solid debut novel. I loved reading about Weston, I totally adored his personality. The flashbacks showing us what happened to him and his great strength were what I appreciated the most. I also really liked his friendship with Rudy.
I must admit that I wasn’t Tessa’s biggest fan, at times I really found her annoying. But it was very nice to see her relationship with her grandparents and how deeply they care for her. 
One thing I did not appreciate was how the two characters came to meet each other. I don’t like it when people look up other people’s home address and show up at their house, it’s just not my thing. Can characters please not do that? Other than that it was quite an enjoyable read.
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A wonderful read. It is a book about love and it’s strength it is also a short book therefore a quick read. Thank you to both NetGalley and the publishers for giving me the opportunity to read this book.
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This book had a lot of great qualities, unfortunately I feel like this book just wasn’t for me. It reminded me almost instantly of “The Fault in our Stars” which I loved. I found the plot was intriguing and I liked the dynamic between Weston and Tessa. I tried but unfortunately I was unable to finish it. I feel like this book is perfect for a young adult audience. In the end it just wasn’t for me but I know so many teens are going to fall head over heels for this book!
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I'll admit I judged this book by its cover. And what a beautiful cover it is. It fits with the inspirational, uplifting story it protects. I think a lot of people will like this book, but it wasn't necessarily for me.

Let's get into the characters. Weston is definitely the star of this book. Despite getting dealt some pretty tough cards, Weston is probably the most optimistic person in the world. Luckily it's balanced out by some snark, self-deprecation, and humor or else I would really hate him. Tessa, however, I wasn't so enamored with. I struggled to relate to her and found her attitude pretty infuriating. Realistically, I'm sure I'd act similarly if I suddenly went blind, but it just wasn't fun to read. For the majority of the book, she acted quite childish.

The storyline moved quickly which I appreciated, and I enjoyed the differences in time and perspective because if it had been just Tessa all day long this would have been a boring book. I'm seeing a lot of complaints in other reviews regarding swearing and teen romance and I'm a bit baffled. I didn't realize this book was considered Christian (Christian faith is mentioned peripherally) and I honestly don't recall a single swear even though I just finished the book. I guess I'm used to much more explicit books! I actually thought the romance was lacking and the ending really threw me for a loop. I'm an epilogue, fully fleshed out HEA girl at heart and this provided none of that.

All in all this book was a sweet, uplifting read. I think it's targeted audience will love it. I just wasn't that audience!
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I stumbled upon Abbie Emmons’s Youtube channel  not that long ago, in search of good writing tips. I was intrigued by her charisma, and her coverage of topics (from her own music videos to how to write good characters).

When I found out she was a Vermont writer (like me!), I was even more enthused to show my support. Even so, I always took her advice with a grain of salt, as I do with any author whose writing I have not yet read. After all, you wouldn’t follow cooking tips from someone whose food you’ve never tried, or lessons from a musician you’ve never heard play…would you?

So, when Emmons announced that she was releasing her first book, I was excited to support her and also incredibly interested to see if her writing would show the expertise she was clearly trying to convince her subscribers of. 

I’ll admit that it helped that the novel had a stunning cover (which she made herself!! What a multi-talented queen!). However, I was skeptical when I heard the words 'YA Romance' (which I had previously convinced myself was just not my genre, but which you may notice if you’ve been following my reviews recently is an opinion which is quickly being revised). But then I heard the premise:

Tessa: Currently in the throes of what is estimated to be 100 days of blindness, due to a drunk driving accident. Struggling to remain hopeful without sunlight, sight of the world, and her ability to write poetry and blog to encourage her to heal.

Weston: Knows all too well what Tess is going through, although he refuses to tell her exactly how. Adamant about teaching Tessa that four other senses are plenty to enjoy life, and that wallowing in self pity is no way to get better. 

I had never read a romance with disability rep and I. was. So. ready.

"100 days of Sunlight" is a perfect summer romance. The friendship-turned-more is so sweet and adorable. Combine that with the underlying themes of healing and overcoming hardship which is intertwined with the romantic elements, and you have a story that makes you feel all the feels.

I was so happy to find that Emmon’s writing is even better than I expected. If I hadn’t known, I wouldn’t have guessed this was a debut. She certainly justifies all the advice she’s been giving on her Youtube channel, and you can bet I’ll be taking more thorough notes from here on out.

One of the major strengths of this book was the way that voice is captured so realistically and yet seemingly effortlessly. The short chapters take turns dipping into Tess’s and Weston’s points of view. Even with the first-person narration, once I started to get to know both characters, I could have been able to tell whose chapter was whose even without the denoting titles.

Tessa is a bit of a naive, sweet teenage girl who has been home-schooled and raised by her lovely grandparents for most of her life. She’s a church-going, poet-loving, introvert. All of this comes across in the way her chapters are written, often falling into verse and sometimes full-on poems, with a focus on description and a chaste vocabulary which, even at its worst, can only summon up a curse of ‘dang’ or perhaps ‘darn.’ Her sadness and rage come across in every word in the beginning when she is feeling them most, but the evolution of her emotions becomes palpable not only in her words but her manner of narration as the story goes on.

Meanwhile, Weston is a bit of a boys boy who loves to show off even if it means putting his life at risk. But he also has somewhat of a redeeming soft side. He’s as likely to punch his best friend in the face as give him a hug and tell him he loves him (ok…maybe a little more likely to punch) and is seen spending equal time bossing around his brothers as he is reading them comic books. One of Weston’s favorite words to use is ‘pansyass’ and he has an outward swagger that creates a confident manner of speaking, while his thoughts are much more contemplative, doubtful, and introspective.

I absolutely adored and applauded Emmon’s ability to differentiate between them so much and with such an eye for detail, especially considering how quickly and often the perspective changes.

It’s clear even from watching her videos for only a short time, that she has inserted a fair amount of herself into not just Tess, but Weston as well. In many cases, such a method would cloud the original characterization and become a distraction that inhibits the author’s ability to look at the story from an outside perspective. But the characters stood so well on their own, a perfect mix of fiction with the benefits of the idea of writing what you know.

With all of these strengths, even a weak plot could have rested pretty well on the laurels of the writing. But 100 days is basically a complete package. The plot progresses naturally, and beautifully, ending in just the right place with just the right amount of emotion and drama. That being said, not a lot actually happens in this story. It’s more of a focus on internal events, and about growth within the characters. Character-driven story lovers rejoice! I didn’t know I was waiting for a romance with this kind of drama, but it filled a want I didn’t know I had.

My only quips with 100 days are so minor, they’re barely worth noting (but I’ll say them anyways!). There were a few instances where word choices made me cringe, although many readers may not notice it at all. It has become a pet peeve of mine when people say ‘OCD’ when they actually mean neat, neatfreak, overly-organized, etc. or when people say “depressed” when they really just mean sad, or unhappy, and similar instances when clinical disorders are used to describe more general emotions and feelings. This was done a few times in 100 days and made me stop and frown. But, it didn’t come up so often that I was put off enough to stop reading. Also, to be fair, the word choice could be chalked up to the teenage main characters, although I’m not sure if that’s a satisfactory enough excuse for me.

I rated 100 days of Summer 4.75 out of 5 stars. I will definitely be keeping an eye on Abbie Emmons in future to see what else she has in store. I would definitely recommend this book for those looking for a cute summer romance, especially fans of "The Sun is Also a Star."
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I was able to read this book early thanks to #NetGalley

This was a quick little read, that was quite enjoyable. Tessa Dickinson was a bit bratty and harsh, but it's understandable. I think this book will be good for YA readers at the HS I work at. 
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100 Days of Sunlight is a story of overcoming yourself and the healing that comes with it. We have Tessa, who is temporarily blind because of a car accident. We have Weston who is an amputee from the knees down. This story is about how disability does not define a person. It is about how disability does not have one face. This story is also a love story, it is also a quick read for when you need a breather. Like I did from all the fantasy I’ve been reading. I inhaled this read. It had the perfect amount of swoon worthy bits, but also had real parts. Emmons doesn’t hide the hard parts of having a disability. I really felt for Tessa and the struggle of being blind, when you have already experienced the world as a sighted person. 

What I loved most of the story was how it was laid out. The chapters are broken down in days and with flashbacks for Weston, so the reader can see the struggle that he had to go through in the beginning. I love those bits because you first meet Weston when he has already done the majority of the leg work to get to where he is. The leg work that he has already put in, is what always him to be able to help Tessa get through her struggles.

When it comes to the writing, I really enjoyed the flow. Tessa is a poet and I feel that lends really well to the story. There is a real poetic flow that really moves the story. This I feel is what really helped hooked me and moved quickly. The story is written with clear markers, that for me helped. With everything clear, I stayed within the story and didn’t feel like I was all over the place. The overall story just warmed my heart and was a perfect breather from all the fantasy. I would totally recommend  to pick this up when it comes out. I liked that disability is a focus because I feel that it is not something that a lot of stories are focusing on. I also love the strong family ties this story has, I adore Tessa’s grandparent and Weston’s brothers. I would have definitely loved more of the brothers and seeing that dynamic
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I love all of the stories being told in some of the young adult novels I have read recently. It is so important for teenagers to read novels about characters who are like them. This novel is about two teenagers who are dealing with disability. Tessa has lost her eyesight after a car accident. The doctors hope it is temporary, but Tessa isn't sure, and in the beginning of the novel, she is very depressed and angry, focusing on all she has lost, even if it is just for a short time. She no longer wants to write poems and update her blog, which before was very important to her.

Her grandparents, who are raising her, decide to put an ad in the paper to hire a teenage girl to transcribe her poems for her. Tessa is very angry about this plan, and insists they do not run the ad. They abide by her wishes, but not before Wesson, the teenage son of the editor of the paper, hears about the ad. He decides to go and insist Tessa accept his services, because he feels he can help her.

Wesson has no legs and walks on prosthetics. He lost them in a careless and freak accident. We hear his story interspersed with the present, and his own struggles are just as poignant as the relationship that develops between Tessa and Wesson. Though he does help her, she also awakens something new in him, a value in himself.

Wesson is a terrific character, and I found myself smiling at the end of this novel.
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This was a really fast cute book. 
I liked it a lot more than I expecting. 
There is a lot of curse words, but not so much that made me feel like is was overused.
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100 Days of Sunlight by Abbie Emmons, 311 pages.
PUBLISHER, 2019. $7.99
Language: R (95 swears, 0 “f”); Mature Content: PG; Violence: PG
What happens when life as you knew it is taken away from you? Weston and Tessa have both had this experience because of accidents that have taken away quintessential parts of themselves that made them who they are—legs and sight, respectively. But it’s during these points of life that they must make a difficult choice: how hard will they fight to live the lives they want?
The only reason that this book is “advisable” instead of “essential” is because of the swear count. Honestly, the romance is a little cheesy, and, at times while I was reading, I felt that Emmons was skimming over time and details that could have been expounded upon, but the meat of the story—the message—has hit me hard. Reading about Weston’s and Tessa’s experiences helps me feel like I can conquer the world—I want to be like them, to pinpoint the obstacles I let hold me back so that I can attack them head on. Right now, having just finished reading their story, I am seeing and feeling the world differently, and I never want that to go away. Emmons’s writing has changed me—and I hope it’s permanent.
Reviewer: Carolina Herdegen
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Review publishing 2nd August 2019.

The choice to request this book for review was deeply personal to me. As you may or may not know, a couple of years ago my husband suffered a catastrophic injury at work and broke his back. After two months in hospital, he came home in a wheelchair. I myself am also suffering from a regular and gradual degradation of my vision, so I identified quite strongly in this novel about a temporarily blind girl and the amputee that teaches her life doesn’t really suck, you know.

I don’t regret an instant reading this book. The relationship between Tessa and Weston, which does hit you quite hard over the head of ‘destined to fall in love’ even though Tessa can’t stand Wes and his annoying optimism at first, does seem to me to be one of those instances when you toss any sexually attracted teens together and watch them fall in love (thanks Lauren Oliver’s Delirium series), but apart from that, this novel was so sweet and innocent and wholesome that I can barely even deal with it.

So Tessa was in a car accident where she hit her head so hard that part of her brain swelled and has caused temporary blindness that will last approximately 3 months. Tessa is homeschooled, and a writer (with an apparent massive and loyal following on her poetry blog and Instagram), and her grandparents, thinking they know what is best for her, try to put an ad in a local newspaper asking for a personal assistant to come and do some typing so she can get back to writing again.

Look, I get it. I’m a blogger, too. I’d be really frustrated if I wanted to blog but couldn’t. But if someone tried to hire me a personal assistant without asking, to force me to write again, when maybe I didn’t feel like writing because I dunno, I could be depressed or whatever on account of losing my sight, I’d be really pissed, too. I get it.

Anyway, Weston overhears, after Tessa finds out the plan, throws a tantrum, and gets her nosy, over-protective grandparents to butt out of her business by cancelling the ad, because his dad is the paper editor. Weston takes it upon himself to force optimism into this girl’s life because he is a double amputee who lost his legs a few years ago, but he managed to overcome that because he didn’t suffer any kind of mental illness as a result of his life-changing disability.

If my tone is coming off as kind of pissed, yes, this part of the novel annoyed me. No one trusts Tessa to know what is best for her. She’s just some dumb teen girl who needs a handsome boy (but she doesn’t know it because she can’t see!) to come in and change her world like some kind of manic pixie dream boy.

I think the thing that annoys me the most is that everyone else knew what was good for Tessa but in the end she agreed with them! I absolutely hate it when other people push their will on characters, especially vulnerable characters, and it really annoys me when men boss women around like they’re helpless ducklings. Not only did Wes do this to his first kind of almost girlfriend, but he did just this to Tessa, completely ignored her wishes, and infuriatingly continued to force her to do things she didn’t want to do… until she admitted that she did. I don’t know who I’m more annoyed at: Weston, for being a bossy bitch; Tessa, for later admitting that other people do know what’s best for her; or her grandparents, who initiated the whole damn exercise.

OK, now I’m going to talk about some good things. I loved Tessa’s fierce online girl gang and I wish they had more page time. Similarly, I wish we’d seen more of Weston’s brothers, who seemed like a wicked little gang. Weston’s friendship with his best friend was, although unconventional, very supportive and complicated. I was completely sucked in to this book as I was reading it, because the language used flowed very well, and the use of flashbacks was perfectly timed to present the information as and when I needed it most. The focus was very much on the romantic with next to no sexual suggestions, so it is also a very ‘clean’ novel. Tessa’s grandfather is a preacher, so maybe this had something to do with it. The whole thing felt very innocent and sweet. Even Weston’s insults to his best friend, although politically incorrect, are kind of innocent.

The book was very well edited and the formatting was really gorgeous for an ARC. I don’t read many self-published novels these days, but I could just tell that this book was a labour of love and that plenty of time and effort had gone on not only the plot structure, the characterisation of the two leads, and the story, but the presentation itself. I absolutely loved the way this book was split into five parts all based on the five senses, and how that related back to the plot. The whole experience of reading it was very enjoyable.
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Just when I feel like I'm ready to completely give up YA fiction, a book like 100 Days of Sunlight comes along to remind me of the beauty of the genre. After a car accident, Tessa is left blind, though her doctors think its only temporary. Into her life strolls Weston, a double amputee determined to lift Tessa out of her depression and help her see the joy in life. The catch, he won't let anyone tell Tessa that has has lost his legs. A brilliantly sweet and endearing story that I read in one sitting, bawling my eyes out at times. For the story is really about Weston - not only how he lost his legs and how he put his life back together but also about his eternal optimism and inner fears. A poignant read, this darling love story is perfect for teens and adults.
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This is a super cute read. I really loved the overall idea of it, but the book didn’t end up clicking with me. I wanted to give a YA book a chance because I loved them when I was younger, but I am not the intended audience for this book anymore. That being said, I think it would be great for a 14-16 year old girl who enjoys cutesy books. 

The character development of Weston was a great touch, and I liked being able to know what his life was like prior to meeting Tessa. I wish that Tessa had the same development. Even though she had her own chapters, I feel like they were redundant and didn’t add much to her character development. I wanted to know more about her. 

The flow of the plot was slow and became boring at some parts. I did enjoy how to book was broken up into different sections based on the difference senses that Tessa still could use during her 100 days. That was adorable.
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You can watch my review here:

Long story short, this was a very sweet book with a wonderful theme.
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I’m not normally much of a contemporary reader, but there’s something about the summer months that makes me want to dive into a few. 100 Days of Sunlight, with its super summery cover, looked perfect to scratch the annual itch.

And what a lovely book it was. From the opening pages, you can’t help but be sympathetic to Tessa’s plight - although her blindness is probably temporary, that ‘probably’ is a big worry, and you can’t blame her for being frightened, bitter and angry about it all. And Weston, with his happy-go-lucky attitude hiding a deeper insecurity is the perfect romantic hero - charming and charismatic, but vulnerable in a really endearing way.

I really liked that the cause of Weston’s double amputation was so innocuous - the kind of accident followed by medical misinterpretation that could happen to anyone. There was nothing glamorous about it, nothing that could be dismissed as something that ‘only happens in fiction’. As such, the reader is forced to face their own vulnerability, to look at Weston and Tessa’s situations and think ‘what would I do in their shoes?’

Empathy and understanding are things the world is crying out for, so it makes me happy that brilliant YA books like this are working to foster those things whilst also delivering super cute, romantic love stories baked in summer sunshine. Highly recommended.
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100 Days of Sunlight

Thank you to Net Galley for the E-Arc!!
I keep dancing around on the rating for this. I would go between liking some chapters and their development and annoyance at everyone. It was cute, but it could have developed a lot slower. 

What I liked:

-This book has some seriously cute moments. It’s cliché a times, but I overlooked a lot of it. The premise and a lot of small moments in the book are interesting and cute.

What I didn’t like: 

-All the characters in this book treat Tessa like a little girl who can’t make her own decisions. People are constantly telling her that they know what is best for her better than she does (in those exact words, too.) Even Weston, who is her age. I feel like, especially at the beginning, they treat her like a petulant 7 year old. 
Granted, Tessa does seem to act a little too young for sixteen, imo (but so does Weston). She seems extremely sheltered. (Her grandfather is a pastor, so maybe she was.) 

Awkward/dated dialogue
-Pansyass was used too often. It sounds like something an 80 year old man would say. Teenage boys have a reputation for being crass. This book tried to tell me that Weston was crass, but he’s pretty tame. 
t h i s
That is something that might have been bigger around like 2012 tumblr (if my internet memory serves me correctly.) A lot of modern poetry has it, and it’s such a meme on nowadays. The seriousness came off as dated. 

-No one ever thinks about speech to text. It’s not mentioned at all. That would be one of my first thoughts. Her grandparents not thinking of it was in character. They put out a newspaper ad, so I don’t think they’re internet savvy. But neither Tessa nor her online friends nor Weston ever think of it. 

-The book tries to be self aware about language but makes some fumbles. Tessa says she found something, then thinks that “find” is a weird word to use when you can’t see. No it’s not? Find just means to discover/recognize, it’s not tied to sight at all. 

-Another issue is that this book jumps to ideas without doing the proper build up, especially with Weston’s characterization. He has some complex about being seen weak/strong that isn’t really unpacked until near the end, and even then, not enough. He also doesn’t have a good enough reason for wanted to help Tessa in the first place. And the adults around him don’t question him about why. It raises some red flags. 

All in all, the target audience for this is probably American Christian teen girls who like a cleaner book. (Though many of the reviews take a star off for the language, it seems as though most of these reviewers are of the Xtian variety. I am not. The language was awkward to me because it was too clean for the teenagers I knew/know.) 

To each their own, I guess. I found out about this book from the author’s youtube channel and requested an arc. From her videos, I had NO IDEA that this book would be so religious.
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Loved this so much! So so good. The writing, the story, the characters. Just *heart eye emoji* 
Love these sweet contemporary romance stories. 
Especially ones that encourage you to overcome your fear and be brave. Definitely recommend if you love sweet, summer romances
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I enjoyed this one. It kept me interested throughout and I particularly enjoyed the ending. I’d recommend it to my friends.
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This author has potential and I can see a studio picking this up as a movie, but I personally did not enjoy the book. I ended up skimming a lot. Overused plot. I've lost count of how many "disabled person falls in love with their hired help," books/ movies there are. I didn't care for it about the characters, except the Grandparents.
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