Thursday, July 10, 2014

Since You've Been Gone

A review in 10 words (or thereabouts):  A scavenger hunt of discovery and a summer of amazing opportunities.

Author: Morgan Matson
Info: Simon & Schuster, copyright 2014, 449 pages

The Pre-Sloane Emily didn't go to parties, she barely talked to guys, she didn't do anything crazy. Enter Sloane, social tornado and the best kind of best friend—the one who yanks you out of your shell.But right before what should have been an epic summer, Sloane just... disappears. No note. No calls. No texts. No Sloane. There’s just a random to-do list. On it, thirteen Sloane-selected-definitely-bizarre-tasks that Emily would never try... unless they could lead back to her best friend. Apple Picking at Night? Ok, easy enough.Dance until Dawn? Sure. Why not? Kiss a Stranger? Wait... what?

Getting through Sloane’s list would mean a lot of firsts. But Emily has this whole unexpected summer ahead of her, and the help of Frank Porter (totally unexpected) to check things off. Who knows what she’ll find?

~Goodreads Description~

The Breakdown
Sloane is Emily's best friend.  And Emily doesn't know who she is without Sloane.  So when Sloane up and leaves mysteriously at the beginning of summer, the big plans of happiness together disappear.  Until Emily find a to-do list from Sloane that will push her out of her comfort zone and force her to show the world just what she has to offer.

The Awesome
While I'm a sucker for the "she was pretty all along, but no one noticed until she took off her glasses" plot-lines, what I really appreciate about Emily was that she didn't change her hair/clothes/makeup to become a "new" Emily, she allowed herself, to try, and dream, and experience far more than she ever had before, on her own.

Matson also brings back the playlists like in Amy & Roger's Epic Detour and carefully places flashbacks to better understand Emily's relationship with Sloane.

The Not So Awesome
Not applicable :)

Morgan Matson, I adore your writing style.  Sarah Dessen has been the epitome of summer romance, coming of age stories, but you, my fine author, are definitely on par.  Her characters are heartfelt and genuine, and like Dessen's characters, I'm always left wondering what's next in their lives.  Of course I'll never get that, but maybe that's the beauty of these kind of tales.  She gives them wings, and we just have to believe they can fly.  Wow.  That was sappy.  But I'm a happy girl.  Two summers in a row I've gotten to enjoy a great book by a fantastic author.

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