Review Love Times Infinity by Lane Clark

Love Times Infinity by Lane Clarke

Love Times Infinity
Lane Clark
Little, Brown Books
Published July 26, 2022

Amazon | Bookshop | Goodreads

About Love Times Infinity

The swoon of Nicola Yoon meets the emotional punch of Elizabeth Acevedo in this breakout debut novel that answers big questions about identity, family, and love.

High school junior Michie is struggling to define who she is for her scholarship essays, her big shot at making it into Brown as a first-generation college student. The prompts would be hard for anyone, but Michie’s been estranged from her mother since she was seven and her concept of family has long felt murky.

Enter new kid and basketball superstar Derek de la Rosa. He is very cute, very talented, and very much has his eye on Michie, no matter how invisible she believes herself to be.

When Michie’s mother unexpectedly reaches out to make amends, and with her scholarship deadlines looming, Michie must choose whether to reopen old wounds or close the door on her past. And as she spends more time with Derek, she’ll have to decide how much of her heart she is willing to share. Because while Michie may not know who she is, she’s starting to realize who she wants to become, if only she can take a chance on Derek, on herself, and on her future.

Love Times Infinity on Goodreads

My Review

LOVE TIMES INFINITY is another one of those books where I feel like the cover copy just does not do it justice. I feel like it really leaves out the emotional depth and deep soul-searching and pain that Michie wrestles with. It implies that her family issues are a simple estrangement when in fact, there’s something much darker and more complex in play.

When I started reading the book, at first, I struggled with Michie’s self-pity. I felt empathy for her because obviously a LOT in her life is a struggle, but I wanted to be like, okay but isn’t there a bright side here somewhere?

As I got to know her, though, her down-on-herself attitude suddenly made so much more sense. It became clear how over and over she self-sabotaged because she couldn’t move past a deep wound. She also holds deep beliefs in some really destructive ideas about herself.

But those ideas, her believing them, all of that made sense from Michie’s point-of-view. As the circumstances of her life and the blooming relationships around her force her to confront those ideas, Michie began to experience a transformation. I LOVED that. So many scenes had me crying because they resonated so deeply: hurt, forgiveness, new self-love. The author captured those moments beautifully and perfectly.

The story also explores some ideas about abortion. Michie has complicated feelings about the issue because she feels like lots of people would have told her mom to abort her. She wonders if her mother wishes she had. Michie’s feelings only grow more confusing when she hears rumors that a girl at school has had an abortion, and she isn’t sure how to feel about it. Michie is pretty careful to try to separate her personal feelings from legal or broad mandate ideas. She also allows readers to explore a complex issue from an interesting perspective.

Love Times Infinity on Bookshop

Content Notes

References to rape without details. Mentions of self-harm and suicide attempt.

Recommended for Ages 14 up.

Representation
Michie is Black. Her best friend JoJo is Persian. Derek is Black and Latino.

Profanity/Crude Language Content
Extreme profanity used infrequently.

Romance/Sexual Content
Kissing between boy and girl.

Spiritual Content
None.

Violent Content
References to rape. Michie attempted suicide in the past.

Drug Content
Teens drink alcohol. References to smoking pot.

Note: This post contains affiliate links, which do not cost you anything to use, but which help support this blog. I received a free copy of LOVE TIMES INFINITY in exchange for my honest review.

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About Kasey

Reads things. Writes things. Fluent in sarcasm. Willful optimist. Cat companion, chocolate connoisseur, coffee drinker. There are some who call me Mom.

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