• Title: The Stillness Before the Start
  • Author: Jennifer Ann Shore
  • Publisher: Self Published on December 4, 2020
  • Genre: Young Adult Romance
  • Pages: 270
  • Available Formats: Paperback and Kindle editions
  • Rating: 5/5

Trigger Warnings: Mild Violence

Many thanks to Jennifer Ann Shore for providing me with a paperback copy of The Stillness Before the Start with a request for an honest review.

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The Stillness Before the Start Blurb

I’m Harper Reed. The valedictorian. The scholarship kid. The girl next door. The obsessive planner.

I have big dreams and secrets, but against my better judgment, Dylan Archer is the one I confide in. 

He’s the rich kid with the world at his fingertips. The sworn enemy of my best friend. The one who hides behind an arrogant smirk. The track star who wants to run away from reality.

We’re not in the same social circles or even capable of being friends, but when he asks for my help, I agree without considering the consequences. It’s a reckless decision that has the potential to start something neither one of us can stop.


My Review

The Stillness Before the Start is a captivating teenage romance that makes me want to relive my teenage years. Jennifer Ann Shore knows how to write great young adult fiction. This title is my third Shore novel, and each one gets better than the last.

Harper and James are best friends. They were born on the same day, in the same hospital, and have been neighbors from the womb. Harper lives for James until Dylan comes along and shakes up her whole world. Dylan shows Harper how to be independent and to live for herself instead of James. 

I loved Harper. She is the kind of person I wanted to be in high school, had I to do it again. She is bright and kind. Yet, she has no idea of the impact she has on others. In the beginning, she lives too much inside her own head. Dylan, on the other hand, is cocky and a bit of a jerk. Their connection grows day by day, slowly building. All the while, James is off on the side for the first time, and he doesn’t handle things well.

This book is the epitome of everything I love about cheesy 80’s movies starring Molly Ringwald. To this day, I get gooey-eyed over those movies, and I got that same look as I read this novel. Once I finished, I wanted to keep picking it back up in case these characters added more to the book in my absence. I am still sad that it is over. I want more.

I’ve seen a meme running through social media about the feeling you get when you realize the title’s meaning. Well, when I got to the part where I understood how this book got its title, I cried. That moment grabbed me by the feels. I had to stop for a bit until I could control my emotions enough to get past it. This moment clenched it for me. It was that moment that I knew this story would live with me far longer than any other book. It is one I will reread many times just to relive that moment.

It is with a happy heart that I award The Stillness Before the Start a full 5 out of 5 stars. I know I should feel silly being as old as I am and falling in love with a teenage romance, but this one is brilliant. I recommend this novel to those of you young or young at heart readers who enjoy a bit of teenage romance. If you do pick it up, I hope you love it as much as I do.

Read My Reviews for Jennifer Ann Shore’s Royally Human Vampire Series.

About the Author – Jennifer Ann Shore

Jennifer Ann Shore is a writer and an Amazon bestselling author based in Seattle, Washington.

She has written multiple fiction novels, including “New Wave,” a young adult dystopian, and “The Extended Summer of Anna and Jeremy,” a young adult romance.

In her decade of working in journalism, marketing, and book publishing, she has won numerous awards for her work from companies such as Hearst and SIIA.

Author’s Contact Links: Website | Twitter | Instagram

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