Zac and Mia, by A.J. Betts
Genre: Young Adult Fiction, Contemporary, Chick-lit
Rating: 4/5 stars
Goodreads Summary: Mia's not your typical hospital patient. Her next door neighbour Zac can hear her fighting with her mom and the nurses through their shared wall and he wishes she'd get over herself. But soon they are trading messages that evolve into a bond neither sees coming.
Apart from illness, they have little in common: she's a gorgeous girl with an entourage of perfect friends and he's a soccer-playing farm boy. In the real world, these two seventeen year-olds would have little to say to each other, but in the hospital the usual rules no longer apply.
By the time Zac is discharged, Mia is gone too, and he wonders about her. Is she okay? Is she better? He can't find out. She's left Facebook and won't answer his texts. Until the night he hears a tap at his window.
Told in alternating perspectives, Zac and Mia tracks the relationship of two ordinary teenagers in exceptional circumstances. They're both in remission, but cancer has changed everything, and normal isn't normal anymore. This is a funny and tender novel about hope, love, and courage.
I was afraid that this wouldn't be so great, but hey, IT WAS.
Zac and Mia was a gorgeous bittersweet contemporary romance, especially for lovers of cancer tales, such as The Fault in Our Stars, by John Green, although this one cannot compete with the amazingness of John Green's stellar tale.
Here we go. Zac has leukaemia, and has had it since he was seventeen. He has spent a countless number of days in and out of a hospital in Perth, Australia, and countless days going through some extra-horrible chemo therapy. Nurses have stated that he's getting better and that he may be able to go home soon, but when he meets Mia, everything changes. Mia is his hospital-room next door neighbour who listens to super-loud Lady Gaga songs and spends an awful lot of mornings fighting with her mother. Mia also has cancer, but she is a totally different type of person than Zac. She is gorgeous, and totally popular back home. All she can't wait for is to go home and attend the Valentine's Day formal, but with a tumour in her ankle, she's not so sure about that. Zac and Mia have a connection, and they might just realize that their cancers might've brought them together, for infinity.
This, I have to say, is a very special novel, with a HUGE meaning behind it, and I mean that sincerely. I really enjoyed this book, and I have to say that it was absolutely great. Only a few negative things came in between, but it overall was an enjoyable light read for teenagers looking for something to read on a rainy day at home.
The plot was slow-paced, but I have to say in a good way. These type of books cannot be fast-paced, because they will lose their meanings and true passion. This is an ultimate contemporary-romance, and the romance has to take its time to evolve. A.J. Betts did a stellar job completing this, she wrote it just right. *wink* I just wish that this could've been a little more adventurous, and I wish that the characters took more risks and showed their TRUE LOVE for each other, because I didn't see that 24/7.
The meaning of this book basically outshone everything else. It's such a deep story that has to be taken seriously or else the reader won't understand the specialty of this book. So there's specific times when someone needs to pick this book, it's definitely not an everyday read, and that's another reason why I loved this.
Character Time. Zac: A totally strong male protagonist. I felt that this story was mainly about him, and his passion, his love, and his journey to fight cancer and to fall in love with the girl next door. He was humorous and a totally fun character that you could just read about for forever and ever. His intelligent remarks just stunned me every time. He was my favourite character.
Mia: This was the only reason why I didn't like this book, next to the romantic problems. Mia was... selfish. We usually don't find female characters like her, but when we do, she's the basic definition of moody sl*tty female characters. I hated her and I seriously wanted to give her a huge slap onto the face.
Where was her sympathy and love towards Zac? She didn't care about him, until the end, and I really dislike that. It was like she had no sense and no heart in her. I feel as if she's the weakest and most hated character that I've read about in a long time.
... the romance at times made me sad. It was like Zac and Mia were only friends for three-quarters of the book. No kisses, no hugs, nothing. But then when we got to the end, POOF I was happy and POOF the ratings blew high up, straight into the sky. If the romance still sucked towards the end and if the ending was bad, then this would be a 3/5 star rated book, and that's not really likeable in my opinion.
So there you go. Zac and Mia was a deep and thought-about book that is not for everyone, I have to admit that. Some contemporary-book lovers will adore this, others won't. It's a different styled up teenage romance that I won't regret reading.