Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Release: 13th August 2015
Source: Copy received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review
"Meeting Jack on the Owl - San Francisco's night bus - turns Beatrix's world upside down. Jack is charming, wildly attractive ...and possibly one of San Francisco's most notorious graffiti artists.
On midnight rides and city rooftops, Beatrix begins to see who this enigmatic boy really is. But Jack is hiding much more - and can she uncover the truth that leaves him so wounded?"
Night Owls is a highly accomplished YA debut that fluctuates between sexy, sad and sweet and puts a new spin on everything that I love about Contemporary YA. It’s a book that tackles themes that I’m used to reading about but Night Owls delivers them in a fresh new way with art at the heart of the story.
Bex and Jack are two of the most edgy new characters that I’ve come across recently. Both of them love art but choose to express it in different ways. Bex’s heart lies with anatomical art (which was actually more cool than creepy to read about) and dreams of illustrating science textbooks someday. Jack on the other hand is a graffiti artist who has become infamous for his spray painted words that keep appearing all over San Francisco. I loved how passionate both characters were about their work and the lengths they would go to for it.
As well as Bex and Jack’s passion for art, they also have a passion for each other that burns slowly after meeting on a night bus. I have to say that this is one of the most accurate accounts of a teenage relationship that I’ve read about. The chemistry between Bex and Jack is steamy but also sweet and tender. This book also gets major props for portraying teen sex in a mature and realistic way that bursts harmful stereotypes about teenagers being “irresponsible” or “immature” and doesn't make teenage sex feel shameful or taboo.
I also loved the family relationships portrayed in this book, they reminded me so much of the relationships I had with my own family as a teenager. Jenn Bennett delivers these authentic feelings of that strange in between time when you’re no longer a kid but not quite a grown up and so everything is still under your parents control and the frustration that can bring.
Overall Night Owls not only was the perfect blend of everything that I love about this genre but it also went that extra mile in making this book read so authentically. If you’re a contemporary fan looking for something a little bit special that stands out from the crowd look no further than Night Owls.