My Overall Thoughts/Impressions: FirstThis is a condensed version of my review. The extended version can be found here.
My Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars.
My Overall Thoughts/Impressions: First off, I'd like to thank Zondervan for giving me a copy of this to review in exchange for my honest review.
I went into this book with no expectations. I hadn't read anything else by Clipston and didn't really know what to expect. However, I quickly was entranced by this story. Lydia was a character that I both respected and admired. Her strength and commitment to do what was right was inspiring.
Another character that I loved was Tristan. Tristan was not Amish, but was Christian. He was just a genuinely nice guy (one that I wouldn't mind meeting). I really enjoyed learning about him in this novel.
In addition to the characters, Clipston also weaved issues of faith into her novel in a way that never seemed overbearing or forced. She created a plot that touched my heart and left me reflecting on my own life.
This novel was both poignantly moving and entertaining. It's been awhile since I've read an Amish fiction book that I enjoyed as much as this one. Clipston is definitely an author that I will be keeping tabs on. She has an ability to create a story that is compelling. I know that I will definitely want to read the companion series. ...more
This is a condensed version of my review. TO see the extended version click here.
My Overall Thoughts/Impressions: First off, I'd like to thank netgalThis is a condensed version of my review. TO see the extended version click here.
My Overall Thoughts/Impressions: First off, I'd like to thank netgalley and the publisher for sending me an e-galley of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.
Secondly, I'd like to say I was hesitant to read this one. Somebody very close to me was diagnosed with cancer several months ago. This person is now in remission and is expected to make a full recovery. However, ever since then I've avoided reading books or watching movies about cancer.
This book was an exception. I had heard such beautiful things about this book and decided that I needed to check it out. I started this book not knowing what to expect. I ended up loving it. This book didn't make me cry, instead it left me impressed by how strong people can be. Hayley Matthews endured this whole experience with a grace and a determination that I know I couldn't have possessed while facing such an immense challenge.
The story read so flawlessly. I even had to remind myself at times that I was just reading. It just felt so real. I enjoyed reading this book immensely and know it will stick with me.
In Summary: A poignantly written book that I absolutely adored reading and one that I definitely recommend to fans of young adult realistic contemporary fiction. ...more
My Overall Thoughts/Impressions: I didn't really know what to expect of this book going into it. It was on my to-read listMy Rating: 4 out of 5 stars.
My Overall Thoughts/Impressions: I didn't really know what to expect of this book going into it. It was on my to-read list and I saw it was at the library and so I decided to read it. Only after I read it did I realize that nearly all of my friends have read and loved it.
I'm no exception. I was hesitant to read this book because it's a cancer book. Since I've had family members with this disease, they always hit hard. But I'm glad I read it. I loved it.
Tess's sister Kristina is perfect—she's the athletic one, the popular one, the one boys flock over, and the one her parents love. Tess has always felt like she's been in Kristina's shadows and she's always envied her sister. Then Kristina gets cancer.
Kristina and her family refuse to tell anybody and Tess finds herself having to deal with all of Kristina's friends asking her where she is. Suddenly people are noticing her. And then when the word gets out, people suddenly want Tess to give them updates. She's no longer in the shadows, but her family is breaking apart. Her dad and her mom aren't dealing and suddenly Tess is the only one dealing.
She must deal with all her parents. She must deal with the fact that her dreams no longer matter. Her grades don't matter. She's not complaining. Kristina is more important, but couldn't somebody at least acknowledge her sacrifice. And then there are the boys who suddenly are entering her life. How is she supposed to deal with them.
I loved this book. It was heartbreaking, but so realistic. I think all of us have felt like Tess at one point. There's the Kristina who we want to be, the one with the perfect life and then we realize his or her life is actually not perfect.
I thought Tess's parents were jerks. There are so many ways to deal with a child having cancer. I've seen that firsthand. And yet Tess's parents just didn't deal. They were such jerks to Tess. They ridiculed her dreams and her. I hated that. Parents are supposed to build up not tear down.
But that's the power of this novel. It made me feel so deeply. I was sucked into this story from page one until the last page. It's a poignant read. It's not a tear-jerker. So often books about cancer feel like they were written simply to make you cry. This one was about cancer, but it was about so much more. It was about Tess, who did not have cancer. It was about Tess finding the strength to stand on her own. It was about Tess learning about what really makes a friend. It was about being okay with who you are.
I loved this book and the power behind it. I'll definitely be reading more by this author.
In Summary: Gurtler has created a book that held me captivated. This is a book that will stick with me long after I turned the last page. A powerful, poignant, beautiful read.
The Wrap-up: I loved this book. It was such a powerful one. I'd definitely recommend it to all teens. The teenage years are rough and we all struggle with the issues Tess faced. A powerful book that I would definitely give as a gift. Read this one. It's realistic contemporary at its best.