100 Days of Sunlight follows 16-year-old Tessa Dickinson, who recently got into a car crash and is now temporary blind. Being a poet who consistently shares her works on her blog, this obviously took her by surprise because now she feels she can’t do anything and feels trapped in the darkness. Trying to find a way to cheer up their granddaughter, Tessa’s grandpa and grandma decided to post a newspaper ad to look for a typewriter, someone that could help Tessa back to the comfort of her blogging and writing zone. Enter 16-year-old Weston Ludovico, a bright, confident, and obnoxiously optimistic amputee, who happened to see the ad and decided to help Tessa to come out of her misery and get her back up on her feet. Through many ups and downs, and after life knocked both of them down with different challenges during different times, we got to witness how the two started as barely strangers to becoming each other’s biggest support system.
This novel is an incredible coming-of-age love story wrapped in relatable modern setup with wonderful representation of mental illness and disability.
Don’t we all love a classic coming-of-age love story? 100 Days of Sunlight feels close to one, but the fact that it didn’t feature your typical normal couple is what makes us love it even harder. The characters are definitely our most favourite thing about this story, but we’d be lying if we say that the plot didn’t amaze us. The simplicity yet complexity of it feels perfect and it really balanced the strong presences from the characters. Tessa was miserable and Weston wanted to help her, because he was in her position once and he knew how it feels like. That’s really it. That’s what this whole story is about, but Emmons managed to develop such simple premise into a well-crafted and intriguing plot. We got to see how Weston worked for his goal to help Tessa through four incredible chapters: smell, taste, sound, and touch, and every one of them didn’t fail to make us smile and swoon over their relationship.
There are many remarkable characters which are presented through a dual POV and this brings you a contrast personality between the reserved Tessa and the spontaneous Weston, and the different path that they chose to heal themselves. You’ll find that you can’t help but root for each and every single one of the characters in this book. The main characters, Tessa and Weston, are obviously the center of this story and it will be impossible to not like them. But we are surprised to find ourselves to be falling for the other side characters too, starting from Rudy — Weston’s best friend, Tessa’s grandpa and grandma, to Weston’s three little brothers — Noah, Aidan and Henry.
This story is delivered through a dual POV, Tessa and Weston’s, and the best thing about it is you can tell exactly the differences between them, and not just because they had different chapters, but their contrast personality completely shines through the way they were talking and thinking. Tessa is not just a shy girl and Weston is not just a spontaneous boy. We got to see how both of them evolved, both for better or worse, and we think it’s crucial to show a character’s complexity, not just when they were at the top of the world, but also when they drowned and stuck at the bottom.
The only thing that keeping us from giving a full five stars, were repetitive words and sentences. We’re assuming that the point of this technique was to make a scene appear as more intense, but we’re not sure if it’s working perfectly in this story.
Overall, this was a wonderful read as reading 100 Days of Sunlight feels easy, yet after we finished the story, it left us with impactful messages that we kept thinking for days. If you’re planning to go on a book haul very soon while also wanting to support a debut and indie author, please consider picking up a copy of this book!
Will you be picking up 100 Days of Sunlight? Tell us in the comments below!
Synopsis | Goodreads
When 16-year-old poetry blogger Tessa Dickinson is involved in a car accident and loses her eyesight for 100 days, she feels like her whole world has been turned upside-down.
Terrified that her vision might never return, Tessa feels like she has nothing left to be happy about. But when her grandparents place an ad in the local newspaper looking for a typist to help Tessa continue writing and blogging, an unlikely answer knocks at their door: Weston Ludovico, a boy her age with bright eyes, an optimistic smile…and no legs.
Knowing how angry and afraid Tessa is feeling, Weston thinks he can help her. But he has one condition — no one can tell Tessa about his disability. And because she can’t see him, she treats him with contempt: screaming at him to get out of her house and never come back. But for Weston, it’s the most amazing feeling: to be treated like a normal person, not just a sob story. So he comes back. Again and again and again.
Tessa spurns Weston’s “obnoxious optimism”, convinced that he has no idea what she’s going through. But Weston knows exactly how she feels and reaches into her darkness to show her that there is more than one way to experience the world. As Tessa grows closer to Weston, she finds it harder and harder to imagine life without him — and Weston can’t imagine life without her. But he still hasn’t told her the truth, and when Tessa’s sight returns he’ll have to make the hardest decision of his life: vanish from Tessa’s world…or overcome his fear of being seen.
100 Days of Sunlight is a poignant and heartfelt novel by author Abbie Emmons. If you like sweet contemporary romance and strong family themes then you’ll love this touching story of hope, healing, and getting back up when life knocks you down.