Fade To Us by Julia Day | Book Review

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Fade To Us by Julia Day | Book ReviewFade to Us by Julia Day
Published by St. Martin's Press on February 6th 2018
Genres: Young Adult Fiction, Performing Arts, Theater & Musicals, Coming of Age, Romance, Contemporary
Pages: 320
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher
Buy on Amazon
ISBN: 9781250097385

Julia Day's Fade to Us is a story about found families, the bond of sisterhood, and the agony and awe of first love.

Brooke's summer is going to be EPIC— having fun with her friends and a job that lets her buy a car. Then her new stepfather announces his daughter is moving in. Brooke has always longed for a sibling, so she’s excited about spending more time with her stepsister. But she worries, too. Natalie has Asperger’s--and Brooke's not sure how to be the big sister that Natalie needs.

After Natalie joins a musical theater program, Brooke sacrifices her job to volunteer for the backstage crew. She’s mostly there for Natalie, but Brooke soon discovers how much she enjoys being part of the show. Especially sweet is the chance to work closely with charming and fascinating Micah--the production’s stage manager. If only he wasn't Natalie's mentor...

When her summer comes to an end, will Brooke finally have the family she so desperately wants--and the love she's only dreamed about?

Fade To Us by Julia Day is a quick contemporary young adult book that works as a nice palate cleanse between heavier reads. I thought this was an okay book. It is not one that will stick with me forever. Actually, I had to look up the names of the characters as I had read this book a few weeks ago and have already forgotten. In truth though, that is also due to read a TON of books. Sometimes they will just blur together. Anyways, Fade To Us actually is kind of a summer read just without a beach setting.

Julia Day’s Fade To Us features a main character named Brooke. Brooke is pumped for the summer. She’s going to work this awesome job at the jewelry store. She plans to sock away more money so that she can buy a car. Also, this is the summer where she’s going to spend all her time with her best friend. As it turns out, Brooke’s stepsister Natalie unexpectedly ends up spending the summer with Brooke, her mother, and her stepfather (Natalie’s father). Natalie has Asperger’s and so, Brooke wants to do her best to accommodate Natalie and make her feel comfortable.

Brooke ends up finding out about a summer drama camp for Natalie who is interested in singing and acting. Eventually, Brooke has to spend a lot of time at the camp to be there for Natalie when she is overwhelmed. Brooke ends up as an assistant to Micah who is kind of the stage director. Of course, the two end up with chemistry. However, that could present a problem, given Natalie’s claim on Micah (as a mentor).

Brooke is neurotypical and is certainly contrasted with Natalie quite often. We see Brooke’s popular best friend rejecting Natalie and saying rude things about her. Brooke counters that and distances herself from her best friend. Overall, Brooke is an okay character. She works hard and is moving toward a goal. I can’t find fault with her work ethic, that is for sure. Ultimately though, she’s kind of bland and forgettable.

Natalie and Micah add diversity to this book. Natalie has Asperger’s, as mentioned before. I have no clue how accurate or fair the representation of Natalie is as I don’t know a whole lot about the Autism Spectrum. Natalie almost comes off as being a burden at first because the family has to scramble to accommodate her and change their plans. But Brooke is up for it and she’s more than happy to make Natalie happy, if that makes sense? As for Micah, he is biracial. This isn’t like a huge part of the story, he just happens to be biracial. Again, I can’t say anything for the representation, but Micah is a pretty cool guy.

Overall, Fade To Us is a pretty okay book. Do I think you all need to rush out and read it right now because your life is about to change? No, not really. Part of what makes this book alright is that the writing is a little abrupt. There are not a lot of transitions in the writing. It just hops from scene to scene. As a reader, I don’t really care much for that. I like to be eased into where I am going. Also, the conversations between Brooke and Natalie felt stilted. I don’t know if that’s intentional, but it was a bit of a slog. Anyways, if you want a book that takes place at summer camp, with diverse characters as side characters, check out Fade To Us.

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About April (Books&Wine)

April is 30 years old and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. April always has a book on hand. In her free time she can be found binge watching The Office with her husband and baby, spending way too much time on Pinterest or exploring her neighborhood.


  1. I used to be a one-book-at-a-time reader but I made the switch to multiple books a few years ago – and the blending of characters to the point of them all fading out is one of my main problems with reading multiple books simultaneously. I think polygareadnig puts even more pressure on a book to be excellent.

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