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Final Draft

3.55  ·  Rating details ·  812 ratings  ·  302 reviews
The only sort of risk 18-year-old Laila Piedra enjoys is the peril she writes for the characters in her stories: epic sci-fi worlds full of quests, forbidden love, and robots. Her creative writing teacher has always told her she has a special talent. But three months before her graduation, he's suddenly replaced—by Nadiya Nazarenko, a Pulitzer Prize–winning novelist who is ...more
Hardcover, 272 pages
Published June 12th 2018 by Harry N. Abrams
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Riley Redgate she is biracial - half-Ecuadorian and half-French Canadian!
Riley Redgate as of now, there are no planned sequels or spinoffs!

i would have just said “yes” but goodreads told me my answer was too short

Community Reviews

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3.55  · 
Rating details
 ·  812 ratings  ·  302 reviews

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Elise (TheBookishActress)
This is one of those rare books that is an organic piece of life itself. It has been a full month since I read this book and I am still so shook by it and so invested and,,, oh my god. Guys, do not sleep on this. This is going on my preemptive top ten of the year and no one can stop me.

Okay, so now that I’ve stopped crying again, let’s get to why this book is so good. At its heart, I think this book is a perfect conveyment of what it is really like to be a teenage girl growing up in our curre
may ➹
soft slow-burn f/f romance featuring a fat pansexual biracial Ecuadorian WRITER and a snarky Korean lesbian???? you all are sleeping on this!!!
This was such a highly anticipated book for me because I think Riley Redgate is, content-wise, one of the most interesting YA authors right now, and this did not disappoint. A book about a self-conscious author who loses her biggest fan and ends up with an instructor who effectively makes her feel like crap until she feels forced to bleed on the page to prove her authorial skill and worth? I mean. I can't speak for all authors, but that sure as hell held some resonance for me.

Laila was an intere
joey (thoughts and afterthoughts)
Aug 16, 2017 marked it as not-dnf-but-on-hold
"sadistically critical and perpetually unimpressed."

Jun 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Trigger Warnings: death, car accident, grief, depression, anxiety, underage drinking, drugs


Elise @ The Bookish Actress has Final Draft in her Twitter name, so obviously, it meant I had to pick it up. Elise is my #1 go to for f/f romance and she is yet to let me down. I’m not even sure how to begin describing Final Draft by Riley Redgate. Honestly, I am still mildly speechless and I finished the book yesterday (t
"When had she risked anything, really? She looked back through her life and saw a procession of schoolday routines, chores, conversational chatter. She felt like a witness to the massacre of all her time. For a horrible moment, she wondered if she'd only ever written science fiction to build an escape chute from her life's insistent monotone."


Thank you so much to ABRAMS Kids/Amulet Books for providing me with an e-ARC of this via NetGalley!!!!!

riley redgate is a treasure and i loved this book
Oct 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Final Draft is a standalone contemporary book and the second novel I've read by Riley Redgate. I really liked Noteworthy last year because of the humor and the friendships, and this one was even better.

The first word that comes to mind when I think of this book is “realistic”. I can believe teenagers like Laila and her friends, with these problems and dreams and life, really exist. I almost felt like I was reading a part of someone else’s life. Contemporary books often fail at that – maybe the d
Mar 13, 2018 rated it did not like it
1.5 stars

Admittedly, I am not the biggest Riley Redgate fan. I didn't enjoy Seven Ways We Lie & I've had Noteworthy on my TBR forever. But when I read the synopsis for this, I was hooked. Perfectionism? Creative writing assignments? Queerness? Check, check & check. I didn't have high expectations but still I walked away feeling disappointed.

First off, the relationship between Laila & Mr. Madison was cringeworthy for me. It was not sexual in any form (thank god) but it was crossing
May 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018-releases, arcs
Hello this book was adorable, writing struggles, adorable romance, relatable main characters, I reaaaaaaaaally enjoyed this and please add it to your TBRs. <3
Full review coming soon!
Danielle (Life of a Literary Nerd)
“Laughter formed coils around them, thick rings between their bodies and the world. The galaxy drew in and in until its entire contents were this room, hardwood to crown molding, this light, gold splashes from low iron cages, and the feeling of this proximity, heat, and security. The timeline had broken like a seal and let loose something weightless. For a crystal instant Laila was borne up on its back and was invulnerable and immortal, and she was never going to let them go.”

This was such a
Alice Cai
Aug 09, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 3-star
This story is "organically messy". I don't know if that's a good thing, but I liked reading it. I didn't really like the characters. Literally everything in this story went nowhere except the romance. Well Laila's character developed also. I liked the romance. Laila's friends besides Hannah didn't do much. Laila's whole writing plotline fell to the wayside later on.

So when I first read Laila's story I was like oh no I hate it so I had it out for Laila in the beginning, but then Nazarenko (t
Mar 06, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc-s, ya
She bowed under the heaviness of the hours she hadn't lived yet

* * * *
4 / 5

When I finished Final Draft my main emotion was sad. Redgate portrayed depression and grief so realistically, it made me feel a bit empty inside, which is how I know an author has hit the nail on the head. This isn't really a happy book, but it's definitely a great one.

She wanted to pierce the furthest frontier of her ability

Laila Piedra is half-Ecuadorian, half-French Canadian, and entirely full of passion for writing.
May 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
Of all the books Amulet scheduled to release this Spring/Summer season, Final Draft was the one I was looking forward the most.
The premise sounds just right up my alley, as I also like to write and rewrite, so having a main character who’s so into writing was (in my case) a recipe for commonality.
Diverse representation is always a plus, and this novel represents pensexuality, homosexuality, Ecuadorian, Korean and anxiety (if I missed something, I do apologize!).

Reading Final Draft, when it comes
Lily ☁️
Oct 02, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Lily ☁️ by: Marie
I adore friendships in books, and I wish this one had focused more on that, and a certain friendship had not turned into a romance … (but I still liked this book!!).

// buddy read with a fave

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Sep 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audiobook
Review to come.
4.5 stars! A truly excellent unique novel on the older end of the YA spectrum. Laila is a dedicated 18-year-old high school SF writer whose world of careful control is turned upside down when her mentor and creative writing teacher is in a horrible accident. His replacement is an impossibly cool award winning author who Laila wants desperately to impress. The ensuing journey takes her way out of her comfort zone. I loved Redgate's smart insightful writing and the portrayals of mental health, que ...more
Grace {Rebel Mommy Book Blog}
Gosh I wanted to love this book. I have love her other two books so much. This one just felt all over the place. There was a story or stories within the stories which were fun. However, there was something holding me back from connecting with the characters like I did with her previous stories. I am not sure what exactly it was though. There were definitely parts I liked, some parts I wished were explored more. It felt like it was a bit slow then it packed WAY too much in the end. Like I wanted ...more
Rahma Abdelrahman
4.25 stars. A very welcome and unexpected surprise!
When a book reduces you to tears, the author has done something right.

I first picked up this book a few months ago in an attempt to get over a prolonged reading slump. But it just wasn't the right time to read it, so I put it aside.
Then last night I was browsing my library Overdrive app looking for something to evade the reading slump that I could feel was on its way (again, yes). I found this book and started reading in a whim, and that was t
Jeann (Happy Indulgence)
Listened to the audiobook and it's clear that the narrator is smart, witty with some dry humour, but the messiness of the book and lack of plot made me lose interest. There were definitely some gems in some of the thoughts and feelings that she had especially as a 18 year old girl with anxiety and perfectionism when it comes to her writing. However this wasn't enough to hold up the book for me, particularly when we reached the ending and I was like huh?

I enjoyed the f/f romance in here when it c
Aug 10, 2018 rated it liked it
Painfully beautiful passages scattered amongst a slowly chaotic coming of age story.
↠ dan ↞
Mar 31, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: lgbtq, young-adult
3.5 stars. i love one (1) angsty writer

popsugar reading challenge: book with a two-word title
Fadwa (Word Wonders)
CW: Masturbation, underage drinking, drug use, sudden death of a loved one, depression, grief.

Full review originally posted on my blog: Word Wonders

After reading Riley Redgate’s Noteworthy and loving that one, I knew I absolutely had to read eveything else she puts out (do not mention the fact that I’ve had Seven Ways we Lie for over a year now and haven’t touched it yet) and I had really really REALLY high expectations for Final Draft and although the first half felt like it was setting me
Wren (WhatWrenReads)

“Have you ever had a day that felt like it changed the trajectory of your entire life?”


This is one of the most beautifully crafted and written books I have read this year, if not ever.
I've suddenly lost my ability to write words because I literally just finished this book and it took my breath away.

PLEASE read this book, but also, prepare yourself for being an emotional mess because I WAS NOT PREPARED.

First off, this is one of the only times I've read a book and fel
Jun 12, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley2018
I really enjoyed Redgate’s previous book, “Noteworthy”, and again I could see how unique her style is. But the book didn’t work for me.

Laila is an introverted mestiza who loves reading and writing science fiction. She’s always had the support of her creative writing teacher until Mr. Madison is involved in a serious accident and a substitute comes to his place. Laila had always suspect her stories weren’t all that Mr. Madison always said but the new teacher’s opinions make her doubt even beyond
Jun 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This review, and many others, can be found at Lost in My Library. I received an eARC from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

I've read a book by Riley Redgate before, NOTEWORTHY. Considering that that one was an instant favorite, I was pretty sure that I was going to enjoy this one. What I wasn't expecting was how different it was going to be. If I hadn't already known, I'd never have guessed that these are from the same author. While NOTEWORTHY was light and humorous,
Lindsey Lynn (thepagemistress)
Nov 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
3.75 stars
4.5 stars
This book took me on a journey. Laila was awesome even though I wanted to shake her sometimes. I enjoyed the relationship between her and Hannah. It was simple and understated, which is refreshing from what we normally get in a YA novel.
It’s fitting that the title of this book includes the word “draft,” because that’s exactly what it felt like sometimes. Our main character felt aggressively developed and undeveloped at the same time, which was more confusing due to the fact that - well, she was the main character. Her characterization revolved so severely around her writing that 1. Took away from my enjoyment, as I do not aspire to be a writer 2. Made her character feel like a placeholder for the author to funnel her writing st ...more
Madeline O'Rourke
There are some important things that I really enjoyed about Final Draft, but also some things that just didn't work for me.

First and foremost: what I loved. Redgate is frank. She uses Laila and this story to blatantly put into words things that many of us have felt, but have maybe never seen echoed anywhere else. For me personally, that related a lot to the passages around sexuality and being comfortable with one's own sexual drive and even the inclusion of Laila masturbating. For others, I'm su
Laila has always been a writer, but she's lived far more of her life within the fantasy worlds of her stories and that of her favorite television show than in her own. But when her favorite teacher is in an accident and he's replaced with an award-winning author as a sub for the remainder of the year, her entire world is flipped upside down when suddenly, she's no longer getting A's on her writing but very low F's. The sub advises she live more to better understand human nature -- which will hel ...more
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i wrote Seven Ways We Lie, Noteworthy, and Final Draft, and i use Goodreads primarily to complain about my emotional injuries at the hands of sadistic authors
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“I promise you, two dozen words were not the difference between mediocrity and excellence. Make a habit of burning something to ash before expecting a rebirth.” 5 likes
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