switching gears tackles some heavy subjects. emmy martin is still recovering from the loss of her best friend and the one boy she'd loved forever, lucas nelson. nothing has felt right since his death, even the peace she can find on the bike trails is broken by a string of competitive losses and losing the captaincy of her high school bike team.
it doesn't help that the guy she lost the captaincy to, cole evans, is amazing at it. and he's rich and good-looking and he has sponsors. and he keeps seeking her out, she's convinced he's lording it all over her, but emmy's friend harper thinks that he's in love with emmy and that maybe it's time for emmy to move on from lucas.
when emmy is blind-sided by her parents' revelation that her mother is suffering from the symptoms of early-onset alzheimer's, emmy feels like everything in her life is out of control. but this loss of control allows cole to somehow sneak through her walls. and emmy realizes that maybe cole is someone who is worth knowing, worth loving; that maybe judging people based on appearances isn't fair or right; that opening yourself to love requires taking a risk; and that if you switch gears, change your outlook, then maybe the path ahead runs more smoothly.
emmy has to navigate a lot of crises in this novel. possibly one too many. because i'm not sure the final obstacle she needed to overcome was really necessary to put her through. but it does make emmy stronger. it added an new level of emotional weight and allowed us to see other sides of the characters which was nice. this was a beautiful story, i'm so glad i got to know these characters.
**switching gears will publish on february 14, 2017. i received an advance reader copy courtesy of netgalley/skyhorse publishing (sky pony press) in exchange for my honest review.