Any Way the Wind Blows, by Rainbow Rowell

Book 3 of the Simon Snow trilogy, after Carry On and Wayward Son. I’m not going to say more, as that would give away spoilers from earlier in the series.

Quick recap of my experience with the series up until this point. I read Carry On in 2015 and loved it. I described it as a book I wanted to hug (and did hug) multiple times. It made me happy. And I thought it was a standalone. I was surprised when Wayward Son was released, and I wasn’t sure if I wanted to read on. But I did, in 2019, and honestly, I remembered next to nothing about the book except that it took place mostly in America. According to my review, I enjoyed the book. I didn’t even remember that. So I was wary going into this book. I considered not reading it at all. In fact, when it first arrived from my library last summer, I returned it, saying maybe I’ll get to it again later.

Later finally came, the book is read, and now I’m in two minds. First, the book took me all of two days to read. It was fast and fun and had a lot of the same silly feel of Carry On – for much of the book. That’s where my “second” mind comes from. The ending was…not an ending. The ending was such a non-ending that I actually went looking for other readers’ thoughts to see if I could figure out if this library copy was missing pages. I’m not talking cliffhanger; I’m talking unfinished. There’s literally a “one year later” epilogue that only addresses one of a half-dozen or so important characters. Some people speculate that there will be a fourth book, but it doesn’t feel like that to me. But hey, what do I know? I thought Carry On was a standalone. (A lot of people felt like that, too, and still feel like it should have stayed one. Honestly, I probably agree.)

I don’t know. How do I classify a book that I really enjoyed, but with an ending so unfinished that I feel like I didn’t actually read the entire book? That kinda turns me off the book completely.

Some random thoughts from my read (no spoilers):

  • I don’t buy the Niamh plotline, particularly the conclusion(ish) to it
  • The British have the weirdest sandwiches. Cheese and pickle??
  • Um, after a google search, I realize “pickle” does not mean even remotely the same thing in Britain as it does in the US (British “pickles” 😀  –> )
  • But it did make me crave pickle chips, mmm…
  • I loved Shepard and everything to do with his story
  • Smith Smith-Richards is the stupidest name ever and I love it
  • This book was a lot more Adult than previous volumes, and it feels weird to have it still shelved in the YA section of the library

That’s about all. But you’ll be happy to know that thanks to my pickle-chip-craving via the sandwich research, I did acquire some pickle chips, and I ate some while typing up this review.

About Amanda

Agender empty-nester filling my time with cats, books, fitness, and photography. She/they.
This entry was posted in 2022, Prose, Young Adult and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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