Gus is every thing I hoped it would be, plus so much more. If such a thing can happen, I feel like my heart is smiling. I just feel so…complete. Satisfied. Fulfilled. Whatever word you want to use, Gus achieved it all.
I’m going to assume you know about Bright Side, and chances are pretty great that you’ve read it. I don’t need to tell you who Kate is. I don’t need to explain how a fictional character changed all of our lives or made us look at the world differently. Because Kate, her world, and the words that Kim Holden wrote made such an impact on myself and I’m sure all of you, I had extremely high hopes for Gus. No doubt about it, Kim far exceeded my expectations.
Like in Bright Side, Gus goes beyond just a simple love story. It’s bigger than that. It’s friendship. It’s family. It’s loyalty and support. It’s the future and the past meshing in a beautiful way. It’s…it is everything. Amidst Gus’ pain, heartbreak, and devastation that you’ll experience right along with him, he learns what’s important. While the pain lessens, memories last forever. He learns to embrace that important lesson. When he meets Scout, she changes him for the better, as does he for her. They both grow together into something magical. And hot. And funny. And… perfect.
As I said before, it’s so much more than just a love story. While it is romantic and you will no doubt be sighing and swooning for our two main characters, the addition of so many others brings it all full circle. Gus’ love for his family shines through. You can feel how important his mother and Paxton are in particular. Keller and Stella are still large components in this story, and I couldn’t wait to see what Stella would be up to next. You get those scenes in the studio with the guys, which are always phenomenal. You’ll see familiar faces from the past. It’s just an all-around heartwarming novel, even though some parts are so incredibly bittersweet.
Overall, this was so much greater than I even hoped it would be. Gus will satisfy your every need for the continuation of his story, but it’s just like Bright Side in the manner that you’ll rethink everything. You’ll step back and realize what’s right, what’s wrong, what’s important, and what you need to let go of. Grasp the important, don’t let go, and just do epic. My friend Clare was a beta reader, and when I asked her “Is this going to make me cry like BS did?” her response was so simple. She said to me, “If Bright Side broke your heart, Gus will put it back together.” She couldn’t have been more correct. Gus will heal your heart. Kim Holden, dude, you did it again. And you’ve brought out my love of the word Dude again, so thanks for that J