Holy crap!! This book started out as a tender love story between two teenagers. That was pretty much all that I was expecting. Well, that was only part of it. A large part of the book (maybe just a little too large) as a matter of fact.
However, there is an underlying danger that is hinted at. A hint that is exposed in bits and parts of the book. It's so slight. I had an idea of what was going on, so I thought. I was so far out in left field and I absolutely loved that I was wrong. So wrong!!! My jaw dropped when I discovered how far off I was on this danger! It was like "Yowza, no frigging way was I expecting that!"
And, there is absolutely no way any reader who reads this review or starts reading the book is going to guess the ending. That's just how well the book is written. I promise you will not see it coming!
I found this book interesting, complex and unputdownable! I am so glad that I discovered this book and got the chance to read it.
Thanks to Montlake Romance and Net Galley for providing me with a free e-galley in exchange for an honest, unbiased review.
This is a story that starts with two teenagers who are seen as awkward and like each other. They don’t really know how to act on that and tread very carefully with each other. While they may not know how to act on their like of each other they do know that they can trust each other and share their secrets. Then Elliott gets torn away at the time Catherine needs him the most. They both don’t stop thinking about each other but being teenagers they are lost to their parent's rules. Elliott finally returns to Catherine their senior year of high school but must work to earn her trust again.
I was entirely invested in this book. Elliott’s persistence in earning Catherine’s friendship was wonderful. He warmed my heart by never giving up on her yet realizing that there were times that he had to give her some space or he would lose her forever. I like that Catherine made Elliott work to earn her back. She wasn’t mean, she wasn’t unforgiving, she was careful with her heart.
Jamie McGuire tackled bullying, racism, peer pressure, and mental health all while keeping the story realistic. She didn’t cover up the real world of being a teenager and showed that there is help available when needed. This is the first book I have read by Jamie but I am excited to read more from her.
Anthology. I'm going to read each author's work in this triptych. Starting with Volume 1, then Volume 2 and lastly Volume 3. I'm hoping that each story will give an extension of the beginning story.
3.79 stars average
1. Bannerless by Carrie Vaughn. Fantastic story. Dystopian investigator finds out what's happening in a small village. Love it. 5 stars
2. Like All Beautiful Places by Megan Arkenberg. I may have read this author before. I remember a story of a melting landscape and a sea with no waves. I thought at the time, it's the moon that makes the waves not air. This book is very similar. 2-1/2 stars.
3. Dancing with a Stranger in the Land of Nod by Will McIntosh. Families trying to figure out what their new normal is. 4 stars.
4. The Seventh Day of Deer Camp by Scott Sigler. A man does whatever it takes to save innocents. Really good story. 5 stars
5. Prototype by Sarah Langan. Through evolution, human's have turned into pets/experiments. A really sad story. 4 stars
6. Acts of Creation by Chris Avellone. What is going on? Is it real, a computer, what? 2 stars
7. Resistance by Seanan McGuire. How can the victim keep being told that she's to blame? She didn't (view spoiler). It just didn't make sense. And the ending didn't make sense either. 2 stars
8. Wandering Star by Leife Shallcross. A quilt shows that in the end a family stays together. Sweet story. 4 stars
9. Heaven Come Down by Ben H. Winters. After everyone has died and everything is destroyed and then rebuilt, she learns the truth. 3 stars.
10. Agent Neutralized by David Wellington. 10 years later, he can finally do something semi-good. 5 stars
11. Goodnight Earth by Annie Bellet. I don't understand why this story has this title because the others made sense, this not so much. Much, much, much later the world has changed and not for the good. 3 stars.
12. Carriers by Tananarive Due. Decades later, after being used and abused, a survivor finds some happiness. Loved it! 5 stars.
13. In the Valley of the Shadow of the Promised Land by Robin Wasserman. Now everyone has aged and the leader has told a story to justify everything he's done thinking he'll be able to write the ending the way he wants. I really enjoyed all three stories. 4 stars.
14. The Uncertainty Machine by Jamie Ford. A 3rd survivor doesn't know if he's going to be rescued or forgotten. Okay story. 3 stars.
15. Margin of Survival by Elizabeth Bear. A woman and her sister try to survive not only the first apocalypse but the many afterwards. Sad story. 4 stars
16. Jingo and the Hammerman by Jonathan Maberry. With the new normal, people are just doing their job striking down zombies that accumulate and a coincidence happens. I don't understand Moose's tears at the end, I would think it would be more laughter than anything. Much better than the other two stories. 4 stars.
17. The Last Movie Ever Made by Charlie Jane Anders. The teenagers are older now and the world has changed but not completely. When they find themselves trapped in their hometown, they use a movie to escape but the outcome isn't exactly what they wanted. Really good story. 4 stars
18. The Gray Sunrise by Jake Kerr. The asteroid hits with a father and son trying to escape. Another great story. 5 stars.
19. The Gods Have Not Died in Vain by Ken Liu. After the near destruction of the world, an inventor has found a solution that might save Earth. I really enjoyed these three stories. 4 stars.
20. In the Woods by Hugh Howey. SPOILER[So these idiots extract revenge 500 years later on a lone woman who had nothing to do with what happened (hide spoiler)] How stupid could they be!? The story was good but the revenge was ridiculous. I don't think anyone with half a brain would have done this. So 3 stars for the storytelling but not the ending.
21. Blessings by Nancy Kress. Many years after the 2nd story, the world seems to have changed for the better, but not perfect. Another good story. 4 stars