The Last Beginning by Lauren James

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Previous readers of this blog will know how much I loved Lauren’s first book, The Next Together. Lauren joined me on this blog for the YA Shot Blog Tour too, so I think it’s fair to say I’m a huge fan of Lauren’s. I picked up Lauren’s latest book around two weeks ago, and I thought it’s finally time to share my thoughts on the book.

The Last Beginning takes a new character, Clove Sutcliffe and is set (at the start at least) sixteen years on from the scandal that Kate and Matt uncovered (see The Next Together). But now Clove has found out that she’s related to them and she’s determined to find them.

It’s really difficult to say anything about this book without giving it away, but I’m going to do my best to keep this review as spoiler free as possible.

The first thing I noted about The Last Beginning is that I think it’s a lot more sci-fi than the first book. Clove is time travelling, her parents are researchers at a university, and there’s also a huge amount of history in the book too. Plus, at times, it’s going to be confusing. Perhaps this has been done on purpose to show the nature of what the characters themselves are going through. It may not do for you, but at points for me it got confusing; there were points where I looked at the page and thought, “What?”

Seriously though, stick with it. Because when it’s not slightly confusing, it’s completely inspiring.

The relationship between Clove and Ella is one of my favourite relationships I’ve ever read in a book, and there are some really good moments in this book between them. If nothing else, they were what made the book for me.

And whilst I still think the book is far more sci-fi than the first iteration of the series, it just works and it works fantastically for the book. Clove really goes through a lot and there are some really tough situations. You’ll feel Clove’s pain and frustration and emotion, and I certainly got quite emotional at points reading Clove’s situations.

The multiple timescales concept is back, although in a slightly different form for The Last Beginning, however yet again I think it works for the book.

The Last Beginning is a really enjoyable read. I really enjoyed reading it, I enjoyed the characters, the plot, the settings (which change from timescale to timescale, you’ll see what I mean if you read the book) and the book in general. It carries on the fantastic concept we saw in The Next Together and runs with it.

I loved it. I can’t wait for your next book Lauren.

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