📚Book Review: From Lukov with Love⛸

Hey lovelies!
I know, it has been a minute since I said that I would post this and I am posting pretty late in the day. Life has been really busy with the Christmas season, work, and my motivation for reading/writing has not been its usual. But we are working through it! Anyone else have those slumps? Tell me I am not the only one! 😂😬

I am bringing you another book review, but, as I said last time I reviewed a book, I am not the best at this.😂 This book review is a little less formal just because it has been hard for me to organize my thoughts lately partly due to my lack of motivation. I also just felt like typing up a review that felt more chatty so 😂 I guess whatever gets me to post this, right?! Also, this post is longer than my usual post (sorry about that), but I hope you still enjoy it!

So today I am talking about From Lukov with Love! This was a book recommended to me by Deanna @A Novel Glimpse (thank you so much!) based off of my Top Ten Tuesday: Non-Bookish Hobbies post (weekly meme hosted by ThatArtsyReaderGirl). This review does not contain spoilers.

Okay onto the review⤵…

Book: From Lukov with Love
Author: Mariana Zapata
Published: Feb 1 2018
Page count: 493

From Lukov with Love

Synopsis (from the back of the book):

If someone were to ask Jasmine Santos to describe the last few years of her life with a single word, it would definitely be a four-letter one.

After seventeen years-and countless broken bones and broken promises-she knows her window to compete in figure skating is coming to a close.

But when the offer of a lifetime comes in from an arrogant idiot she’s spent the last decade dreaming about pushing in the way of a moving bus, Jasmine might have to reconsider everything.

Including Ivan Lukov.

🧐Initial Thoughts
I really enjoyed this novel! I do not actively seek out romance novels not because I dislike them, but just because I am obsessed with fantasy. I am also a HUGE mood reader (sorry if I have mentioned that a lot) so I have to be in the mood for a romance novel. Or any novel, really. But you get my point. 😂 Since this one was recommended to me, I decided to give it a go! (I love when I get book recommendations so if you have any for me, let me know in the comments! I will read it!) It also involved figure skating and, as someone who has a passion for figure skating, this book was right up my alley in that regard. ⛸

Characters and Character Development
I really enjoyed Jasmine as the narrator. She was funny, tough, sassy, and very relatable. I wasn’t a huge fan of some of the language in the novel, but I will say that the novel wouldn’t be the same without it as quite a bit of the humor was derived from it. Or, at least to me, it was.
I enjoyed watching – I mean, reading – Jasmine’s character evolve throughout the novel. It added another dimension to the story that made the novel that much more enjoyable overall.

Figure Skating Aspect
You all know I have to discuss this part of the book being a former competitive figure skater and all! I was pleasantly surprised with this element of the novel. I was afraid that this book would fall into the black hole of stereotypical “figure skating” things that so many movies fall into. (I know I just compared books and movies but I haven’t really read any other figure skating books so😂) These stereotypes include unrealistic eating habits/negative views of unhealthy foods (potato chips is a common example) occasionally/figure skaters being stuck up and snotty, petty girls, etc. These really bother me because it is pretty untrue. I think it feeds a dangerous narrative in a few ways.

1). It conveys that you can’t have unhealthy food cravings. When you deny your body that, you will feel the need to eat it 10x more. I have noticed that, when I say, “I am not having any sugar for the next month” all I do is want sugar. Rather, let’s say to ourselves “Let’s limit our sugar intake.” I always do better with that!

2). Yes, you do have to watch what you eat but it is only because you want to be healthy and strong not because you need to be as skinny as a twig. 4). It makes it seem as though you have to go on crazy, strict diets to be healthy. You do not.

3). It is unfair to say that all figure skaters are arrogant, petty, self-absorbed, etc. Maybe some are! But… I am sure there are plenty of other athletes like that, too.

Sorry (not sorry) for the rant😂 Back to the novel!

That being said, this novel was very good about not falling into those traps I mentioned above. there were a few instances of weight loss/gain and dieting in the novel, but it wasn’t too cringey for me. It was also completely made up for later on when strong, healthy bodies were praised and considered beautiful (as they should be).

As a former figure skater, I will say that much of the book was accurate and realistic and I really appreciated that. I liked how the author highlighted the sacrifices that must be made to follow your (skating) dreams because it is true; it is not all sunshine and daisies and the novel conveyed that.

Lastly, I will say that one thing I didn’t love was the emphasis on wanting to win. However, I don’t think the author was conveying the idea that you should only do something to win. I think Jasmine’s desire to win could be misconstrued for only being in the sport to win because her desire to win is repeated many, many times throughout the novel. It would be easy think that she only skates to win. So while, I think the author did a nice job of staying away from that idea by coupling the desire to win as a result of Jasmine’s past history of failures and a desire to prove herself, I will say that it was easy to lose track of that.

❤️Romance Aspect
The first thing that comes to my mind is that it was very developed. You could see a clear arc in the romance element throughout the entire story. I actually really like how it took a while for the two of them to actually recognize their feelings for each other. Without that length of time and the events in between, the romance would have felt forced and ultimately, it would have fallen flat. The way Mariana structured their romance makes the end result so much sweeter!🥰😍

A big part of this book that I loved was the banter between Jas and Ivan. This book has me laughing my butt off (yes, I got weird stares from my friends and the public😂). And once the romance started settling in, this book had me melting⛄️☀️💦😂 There is nothing more than some good banter in a novel!

💬Final Thoughts
Overall, I quite enjoyed this novel! I would definitely read it again and I most likely will read it again sometime soon. While I do skate every once in a while, it is not as often as I would like and it isn’t completely the same as training was. But this novel helped me cope with that, in a way. It helped me get lost in the world of figure skating and training again. Oh, and the love story part is pretty great too. 😊🥰 

⭐️Desirability (Rating)
4.5 stars

Have you read From Lukov with Love? Let me know in the comments below!


5 thoughts on “📚Book Review: From Lukov with Love⛸

  1. Hello Darling,
    Nice afternoon book-ish review. We all have those slumps, sometimes minor bumps that make us a grump.
    But it’s temporary like everything else..

    Enjoy your next book !

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: 📚Top Ten Tuesday: New-to-Me Authors I Read in 2020 | Her Bookish Desires

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