Book Review

Book Review : HOW TO MAKE A WISH by Ashley Herring Blake


Title:                How to Make a Wish
Author:            Ashley Herring Blake
Publication:     02 May 2017 by HMH Books for Young Readers
Genre:             Young Adult, LGBTQ
Format:            e-Galley



20170403_071322.jpgAll seventeen year-old Grace Glasser wants is her own life. A normal life in which she sleeps in the same bed for longer than three months and doesn’t have to scrounge for spare change to make sure the electric bill is paid. Emotionally trapped by her unreliable mother, Maggie, and the tiny cape on which she lives, she focuses on her best friend, her upcoming audition for a top music school in New York, and surviving Maggie’s latest boyfriend—who happens to be Grace’s own ex-boyfriend’s father.

Her attempts to lay low until she graduates are disrupted when she meets Eva, a girl with her own share of ghosts she’s trying to outrun. Grief-stricken and lonely, Eva pulls Grace into midnight adventures and feelings Grace never planned on. When Eva tells Grace she likes girls, both of their worlds open up. But, united by loss, Eva also shares a connection with Maggie. As Grace’s mother spirals downward, both girls must figure out how to love and how to move on.


After reading two psychological thrillers, I think it is only right that I read something of a different genre just so as to refresh my head.

Anyways, as much as I would like to discuss the whole story, the synopsis pretty much gave you an idea already. So I will no longer dwell on that but instead focus on what I believe is the two most important topics subtly being discussed on the book. (If you really want to know the story, read the book.)

  • Effects of war to families

This is the second novel that I read this 2017 wherein the main characters’ father died on duty in Afghanistan. I sure hope that this would not be a recurring theme for a backstory of the main character because this is just so sad. I know we all have different tolerance to pain and different ways of coping when it comes to losing a love one. But letting readers think that it’s okay to wallow in self-pity and lose your wits is a no-no for me.

Grace’s mother, Maggie, could not cope with the loss, making her rely on alcohol and whatever affection given to him by different men. She was also very dependent on her daughter. She puts her needs first instead of her daughter’s. I really hated Maggie. She is such a lousy mother. She has no job, she can’t give Grace a proper home, then she also takes her daughter’s and boyfriend’s money. For what? To buy things that are of no use? Celebrations that are not even worth celebrating? Honestly, Maggie acts more like a teenager than Grace.

  • Homosexuality

I really think there is nothing wrong whatever your sexuality is or what your gender preference is. But I believe that we have to understand that liking someone of the same sex and acting upon on that like are two different things. What I’m trying to say is, for example, me liking a girl I see for her looks or confidence or wits does not mean that I’m a bisexual already. It’s when I actually do something about it, like getting to know the person in a more intimate level, that I can start to ask myself which do I prefer.

Grace dated boys. But at the same time she also admires girls. When she started to act upon it, just like when she finally made a move to the lifeguard and to Eva, that was when she finally realized that she is a bisexual. And that is perfectly fine for her age, exploring ones sexuality.

Overall, I like it. It was well written and I did not find any unnecessary details. Definitely will tug your heart if you even have one. LOL.



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