Finding Yvonne ARC by Brandy Colbert

Brandy Colbert at Yallwest 2018

Finding Yvonne ARC by Brandy Colbert

Published by NOVL, Little, Brown and Company

Release Date: August 7, 2018

YA Contemporary Fiction, 276 pages

Back of book description:

Since she was seven years old, Yvonne has had her trusted violin to keep her company, especially in those lonely days after her mother walked out on their family. But with graduation just around the corner, she is forced to face the hard truth that she just might not be good enough to attend a conservatory after high school.

Full of doubt about her future, and increasingly frustrated by her strained relationship with her successful but emotionally closed off father, Yvonne meets a musician and fellow violinist who understands her struggle. He’s mysterious, charming, and different from Warren, the familiar and reliable boy who has her heart. But when Yvonne becomes unexpectedly pregnant, she has to make the most difficult decision yet about her future.

I received a copy of this novel at Yallwest this year and was fortunate enough to get it signed by Brandy Colbert herself!

finding yvonne

This book was easy to read, and as I got into the story I started to think that it may be a little too different from what I usually read. But once I was invested in Yvonne’s story, I needed to know what she was going to do and how she was going to find herself. At first, I thought this would be a fast fun read, however this novel touched on a lot of heavy topics, and I slowed down to absorb it all.


This novel involved weed. A lot of it. And I wasn’t totally prepared or wanting to read a story with weed as that much of a constant. It wasn’t a major component, just was ever present in the protagonist’s life, which was a message in itself.

The novel started with and focused on Yvonne’s mother having left them, and her father being absorbed with work so much he was absent for much of the time. Abandonment was a major theme, and Yvonne struggled with finding ways to deal with her parents, and how to find her own way through life with and without them as a reference guide.

The story progressed as Yvonne’s life became mundane for her. Her biggest decision in life was between playing the violin, and not playing the violin after high school. Then it was whether she should get into baking or stick with violin. Then her whole world gets turned upside down, when she can’t choose between two boys, and suddenly her other decisions seem small.

This novel was majorly the characters. And I was really intrigued with how they developed.

Yvonne is in love with Warren, her father’s sous chef. But when he isn’t there for her, she goes looking for someone else. Someone who can be. Then she meets Omar, a street performer and perfect guy, or is he? When Yvonne has sex with both guys within a week, and ends up unexpectantly pregnant, she finds out even more secrets than she wanted.

I connected the most with Sabina, Yvonne’s best friend. Mostly because I had a friend in high school who lost her mom when she was little, and I know what it feels like to be there for a friend who’s broken and empty like that.

Sex, Love, Family, Abandonment, Race, Wealth and Unexpectant Pregnancy, I felt this complicated novel covers many topics with no clear plot. The writing was really easy to get into, and I felt the dialogue was interesting enough.

Overall, 3/5 stars, only because I didn’t connect as well with this novel as others may be able to.

Thank you for reading! I was pleased with this novel, and so happy I got it signed!

Mara x


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