Synopsis from Goodreads
Brooklynn Summers has a plan for her life: graduate from high school, get into a top fashion school, prove to her family that she’s not a failure. She wishes someone in her life understood her need to create because her parents sure don’t support her dreams, her sister hates her, and the deadlines are soon approaching.
Enter Grayson Banks.
There are a few things in life Brooklynn can’t stand: mismatched patterns, cheap polyester, and Grayson. No boy has ever publicly humiliated Brooklynn like Grayson has. When he suddenly moved away in eighth grade, Brooklynn happily wished him good riddance. But on the first day of senior year, Grayson comes back, with his piercing blue eyes and a smile that melts icebergs, he is not exactly the boy Brooklynn remembers. She quickly realizes that Grayson’s intentions have completely shifted, but she’s not sure if she can put their past behind her.
Grayson understands Brooklynn’s creative ambitions and he devises a plan to showcase her work to the world. When the two agree to work together, suddenly, there is more than just fabric paint that’s having a chemical reaction to its environment. Brooklynn cannot help but feel pulled into Grayson’s arms, but memories and misunderstandings surface, putting in danger whatever small comradeship these two childhood enemies have constructed.
Can Brooklynn overcome her own insecurities, finally making her dreams come true? Even a dream she didn’t know she had.
This is a story about a girl with big dreams and a boy who helps her achieve them.
The synopsis gives the plot in detail so there is no need to recap any of it The characterizations were well developed piecing together not only Brooklynn and Grayson’s interactions in the present alongside their shared history, but also their individual home lives and the how specific incidents have shaped them into the person they are today.
Both characters are very endearing allowing a deep connection to them. It is obvious from the very beginning that they belong together, they have chemistry as well as a deep connection if only Brooklynn could acknowledge it. I understood Brooklynn’s reluctance to let Grayson past her barriers but to the outside observer it was pretty obvious how he felt about her both in the present and the past.
Brooklynn’s emotional issues are exasperated by the lack of support she receives from her parents. This was a truly heartbreaking aspect of the plot, I hated seeing how Brooklynn’s father treated her, making her feel like a disappointment. I must say that Brooklynn is an incredibly strong character to stand up for herself in the face of such opposition, lesser spirits would have been crushed. Both Brooklynn and Grayson’s creative passion and talent pour through the pages adding to the plot as a whole. It was like the technicolor rainbow on top of the black and white plot (if you get my meaning – icing on the cake situation).
The minefield of high school and bullying is touched upon as well as the unique friendship providing encouragement, support and love. Although I did find some of the angst a little repetitive when it came to Brooklynn it did add to the emotional connection I felt with her. I would have liked to have seen the story progress at a faster pace with more insight into the background of both her father and her aunt with respect of their past influencing their actions to Brooklynn.
On the whole, Falling by Design is a cute romance that encourages you to follow your dreams.