Author: Laura Wiess
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Source: Simon & Schuster Australia and MTV Books via NetGalley. Thank you!
Goodreads | The Reading Room
Are there any answers when someone you love makes a tragic choice?Review by Nara
Before and After. That's how Rowan Areno sees her life now. Before: she was a normal sixteen-year-old--a little too sheltered by her police officer father and her mother. After: everything she once believed has been destroyed in the wake of a shattering tragedy, and every day is there to be survived.
If she had known, on that Friday in March when she cut school, that a random stranger's shocking crime would have traumatic consequences, she never would have left campus. If the crime video never went viral, maybe she could have saved her mother, grandmother--and herself--from the endless replay of heartache and grief.
Finding a soul mate in Eli, a witness to the crime who is haunted by losses of his own, Rowan begins to see there is no simple, straightforward path to healing wounded hearts. Can she learn to trust, hope, and believe in happiness again?
Okay, everyone, have a quick read of the last paragraph of the blurb
Doesn't it seem like the romance is going to be a HUGE focus of the book? It sounds like Eli somehow swoops in and completely saves Rowan; with the romance being the reason why she can move forward. Well, let me shatter that expectation for you: the romance is actually, quite surprisingly, a relatively minor subplot in the book.
That being said, the relationship between Rowan and Eli was incredibly sweet and well developed. Eli, being someone who went through something similar in the past, has this understanding of exactly what it's like for Rowan, and at times, I think Rowan just couldn't handle the level of empathy that he was able to show. You could just see Rowan falling apart, and her bitterness, her grief, her anger were all just so real.
Bit of a mistake reading the middle section on the bus. I thought the really feelsy bits would be towards the end, but nope (well actually, the feelsy bits went all the way from the middle of the book until the end. SO MANY FEELS). There I was sitting on the bus, all I CAN'T HANDLE THESE EMOTIONS and there was everyone else going on with their lives.
Maybe it's because I saw so many Goodreads status updates about people crying over this book, but I was so prepared for the feels that the tears didn't actually come. I did obviously get hit in the feels, but it wasn't to the point that I actually cried...Perhaps knowing that the feels were coming was a bit of a detrimental thing to my enjoyment of the book- from the moment of the crime, I felt it was quite obvious where the book was going to go, and I predicted exactly how it would end, too.
Despite knowing where the book was going, I still really liked it. It's an incredibly powerful story about one girl's battle with grief and her struggle to find the strength to finally accept what has happened. This is actually the first time I've heard of Laura Wiess, but Me Since You has guaranteed that I'll be on the lookout for her in the future.
Really liked it