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Me Since You

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Laura Wiess captures the visceral emotion of a girl's journey from innocence to devastating loss and, ultimately, to a strange and unexpected kind of understanding--in this beautiful and painfully honest new novel.

Are there any answers when someone you love makes a tragic choice?

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?

368 pages, Paperback

First published February 18, 2014

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About the author

Laura Wiess

5 books532 followers
Laura Wiess is the author of the critically acclaimed novels Such a Pretty Girl, chosen as one of the ALA’s 2008 Best Books for Young Adults and 2008 YALSA Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers, and Leftovers. Originally from Milltown, New Jersey, she traded bumper-to-bumper traffic, excellent pizza, and summer days down the shore for scenic roads, bears, no pizza delivery, and the irresistible allure of an old stone house surrounded by forests in Pennsylvania’s Endless Mountains Region. Email Laura Wiess at laura@laurawiess.com or visit http://www.laurawiess.com for more information.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 362 reviews
Profile Image for Giselle.
990 reviews6,359 followers
May 9, 2014
A sad but moving novel; Me Since You is a difficult, yet eye opening journey into the deep, dark abyss of grief.

It doesn't start out as an emotional train wreck, though, which is something I really appreciated. We get introduced to Rowan as a normal teenager. We see her living a normal life, with the angst and risk that come with teenage antics. There's also some romance involved that's refreshingly cute and full of the new-relationship happiness and hope. The tragedy itself only occurs past a quarter through, giving us the opportunity to truly grasp the monumental change that happens to Rowan, the before and after. I loved that we got to know her as a person before she's stricken by pain. This allows us time to connect with her in a way that makes us thoroughly feel and understand her pain.

Once the worst happens, Rowan finds herself in a pit of despair and drags us right along with her. We fight through the stages of grief, we battle what no one else seems to understand. Rowan's friends and neighbors don't get how she can't just move on already, especially after months. This is not so we despise the people around her (even though I did, kinda), it's so that we can see how a situation like this is looked at from the outside; how people really don't know what it's like unless they've been through it. It's really an eye opener. We all know grief, but its impact is not truly accepted unless it's yours.

This story also touches on the ripple effect of our decisions. Even if you'd give anything to change the past, every action, every regret, has some good come out of it. This book is not only sadness and misery. Don't avoid reading it because you think it will be nothing but torture on your heart. Yes, there's anguish, but it's also about learning to move on, about finding light in the darkness. The character growth in itself is amazing. Then there are some great family bonding moments, new experiences, rekindling romance, even cats and dogs, all giving a bit of light to this bleakness, showing us that no matter how far down you've been pushed, there is always going to be a way up.

Me Since You is an incredible story about conquering grief. It makes you understand its consequences and power, and may even help you through your own dark times.

--
An advance copy was provided by the publisher for review.

For more of my reviews, visit my blog at Xpresso Reads
589 reviews1,030 followers
February 15, 2014
See more reviews at YA Midnight Reads

Sobbing.

Sobbing.

2 hours later.

Eating chocolate that Eileen sent via the internet.

Thinks of Me Since You.

Starts sobbing again.

---------

Well that sucked. Not the book, but the fact that I had to hold in all my tears as I read this book on the train and at the state library. Trust me people; there were a lot of tears wanting to fall. Right now, I just want to sit in a hole with my chocolate and ice-cream and blanket and hide there for eternity. Is that allowed? Please do let it be.

“If only…” If only Rowan didn’t skip school that Friday, then her family wouldn’t be smothered in the grief that they are in now. If only Rowan’s police officer father didn’t pick her up, to only be called to the bridge where a man and baby stood, then Rowan’s father wouldn’t have had tumble into numb depression that he was in.  Then they’d still be a happy, normal family. But it’s too late now. They are far from being a happy and normal family. But the only thing left to do is to accept and hope, and try.

Me Since You is not a love story, there is a romance but it’s set nicely in the background. This is not about a damaged guy who suddenly enters a newly damaged girl’s life and fixes it within an instant. Because romance is not the answer to everything. The chemistry between Rowan and Eli is entirely genuine and bittersweet. Eli understands Rowan’s position because he underwent a similar grief related situation a little over a year ago, and the two were perfectly compatible. And I was swooning the whole time.

I’ve got two complaints with Me Since You. First and foremost, I hated Nadia, Rowan’s best friend. I think the author purposely made her an unlikeable character, but damn she was really stretching it. She was a completely inconsiderate friend who even told Rowan to ‘speed grieve’. Clearly, this girl knows nothing. Speed grieving is not going to help at all. And dragging her to parties then getting mad at her is not going to help at all. That. BITCH.

*Start Spoiler*

My other complaint was when Rowan found the suicide letter from her father. That scene made me sob my eyes out yet I didn’t like how Rowan found it so easy to heal after that. Just all because of a suicide note. Maybe that could have been her starting point of healing after the trauma, but I felt the author rushed that part a few steps too quickly. Still a heart-shattering scene all the same!

*End Spoiler*

Laura Wiess’ latest is a novel full of grief, loss but also hope. It is achingly raw and powerful. It is heartbreaking. It is a story of what it means to live, and what it means to die. It is a story about grieving—and different forms of it. Me Since You is absolutely not my last book by Laura Wiess; I am determined to try her previous books, for I’d be a fool not to since I adored this book dearly.

~Thank you MTV Books for sending me this copy!~



***********************

BRB CRYING

Profile Image for Keertana.
1,126 reviews2,162 followers
January 31, 2014
I'll admit it: I picked up this book for its cover alone. In fact, I've been itching to try a Wiess novel precisely because of her covers. Either they are breath-taking in their beauty or eye-catching in their simplicity. Wiess's latest novel, though not perfect, has certainly ignited a thirst for more of her work. With an effortless writing style, Wiess captures dark, gritty emotions in their rawest form. Granted, her novels are not easy to read - not by a long shot - but they are worth it.

Me Since You is a difficult novel to describe, merely because it a two-fold story. Our novel begins with Rowan Areno cutting class. Rowan's father is a police man and after witnessing horrible crimes day after day, he's more than just a little over protective of his only daughter. After finding her sitting alone in a booth at McDonald's (after her best friend and two cute senior boys ditched her to go to the beach), Officer Areno takes his daughter home and is about to sit her down for a scolding when he receives an urgent call. As the closest one to the scene, Rowan's father cruises out to a bridge where a man is planning to commit suicide with his three-month-year-old baby boy in his hands. Eli, whose father was killed in the army, is also on that bridge, walking his dog. And despite the efforts of Rowan's father, the man jumps and kills himself.

After the incident, Rowan's life is turned upside down. For one, the neighborhood she lives in ostracizes her father for not saving the life of a depressed man. When the video of what transpired leaks online, her father gives in to his inner demons. While life with her father is no longer easy, it is still easier than what comes afterward: suicide. Rowan knows her father loved her and her mother but she cannot understand why he would kill himself. Me Since You explores grief in a deep, visceral manner, both as a recipient and as an outsider. After the incident on the bridge, Rowan struggles to maintain her friendships and push through with school, striking up an easy relationship with Eli who, shockingly, seems to understand her. Just as her life seems to be returning to a state of normalcy, however, her father commits suicide and Rowan shuts herself off from the world. Completely.

Me Since You touches upon the deep-rooted sickness of depression in an engaging manner. We first witness the extent of depression through the eyes of Rowan's father as he struggles to convince a man to live, to let his new-born child live. We see it again through the eyes of Rowan as her father begins to take medication, sees a therapist, and attempts to survive through each day. It isn't easy to see a parent, especially one you believed was constantly strong and a source of support, succumb to weakness. But Rowan's father does his best to get his life back on track. As requested, he takes time off from work. As advised, he goes to talk over his issues with a psychiatrist. As told, he takes anti-depressant pills. And yet, he still commits suicide. After all his efforts and despite the love his family bears for him, he loses his will to live on.

After this horrific action, Rowan needs time for herself. While her romance with Eli - understanding, sweet, calming, gentle - is just on the verge of taking off, she is blinded by her grief and unable to pursue anything more with him. Eli, who lives with his father's death every day, who walks the dog that served in the army with his father, understands better than anyone. Even when Rowan's friends ask her to heal quickly, even when her remaining family pushes her to forgive her father, Eli gives her the space she needs. As such, their romance is a minimal aspect to this novel, but an important one. While they don't heal one another, they do help one another, and the understanding they share due to their traumatic pasts makes them an ideal match.

One of my favorite aspects to this tale, though, is Rowan's healing. Not only does Rowan write letters to her father, voicing her disbelief, her anger, and her sorrow, but the relationship she sustains with her mother is beautifully portrayed. Both these women have been touched by the same grief, but in different ways. Rowan and her mother are healing at different paces and through different mediums. After her husband's death, Rowan's mother takes it upon herself to house stray cats - eleven of them. It is only when her parents - Rowan's grandparents - yell some sense into her that she begins to accept that her husband is truly gone. While Rowan doesn't need to be there for anyone, her mother does need to be there for her which makes that burden of grief all the more painful, in some ways. Wiess charts these issues with grace, though, creating three-dimensional characters we can get behind and emotions we feel, despite not wanting to touch these difficult topics.

Where my criticism with Me Since You arises is in its conclusion. Rowan's father, despite being a meticulous man, fails to leave a suicide note which haunts Rowan. Although she heals, she is unable to fully let go of her grief until, eventually, she does find a suicide note. For me, this felt like a cop-out. In her debut, Courtney Summers writes about a young teenage girl coping with the suicide of her father - a girl who never finds a suicide note, never finds a reason, but still manages to heal. Me Since You seemed to be following this very same and poignant path until the tail-end, which ruined the impact of the story for me. Nevertheless, despite that, this novel discusses the issue of suicide and depression in a heart-felt manner and for fans of issue books, this one covers that scope beautifully - and even beyond.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Ashley.
667 reviews718 followers
October 22, 2013
Me Since You is hands down the most powerful and emotional book I have ever read. This book ripped me to emotional shreds. I have never cried so much over one book in my entire life.

If you don't like sad books, turn away now. Me Since You is not just sad—it's devastating. The genuine loss and hopelessness that drips from the words in this book will cripple you a thousand times over. I read this book in increments, and each time I picked up the book again, the tears immediately started up again.

Me Since You was so real and so honest—I think that's why it had such a strong effect on me. It almost read like a real journal than a fictional story. I felt like all the events in this book really happened, and maybe even I was part of them. I got so involved and so invested, and that's why it brought tears to my eyes every single time I turned the page.

What I love about this book is that Laura Wiess didn't take the easy way out, which I almost expected. You have a book about loss and grief, with the clear mention of a romance in the synopsis. But, it didn't turn out how I expected. I imagined the cliché story where a girl's father commits suicide, she seeks comfort in the arms of the understanding boy her age, and he solves all her problems and guides her through this troubling time.

Nope.

The romance did not dominate and take over Me Since You. I expected it to kind of take over the whole grief/loss aspect of the book, but it totally didn't. In fact, the romance is only a subtle accent to this story. It largely focuses on working through the stages of grief. Rowan is confused, lost, upset, angry, and finally learns to accept the tragedy. Although Eli does have some involvement, he's not the focus. Most of the story is Rowan struggling to deal with this on her own, because she doesn't immediately run into the arms of the hot guy she met. She's scared, sad, and alone, and pulls inward, as you'd kind of expect from someone suffering a loss like this.

So although I loved the romance (it was sooooo sweet!!), I loved how it didn't turn Me Since You into a romance book. The story was still very much about loss, death, family, and acceptance.

I feel like I can't even really convey the number this book did on me. It completely OWNED me. It ripped me into so many pieces. I had to fight back tears while reading the ending on the train. I swear to god, people were probably looking at me and wondering, "I wonder who in her family just died..."

Me Since You made me feel all the feels. I was completely part of the story, to the point where it dominated my thoughts even when I wasn't reading. I was yelling at Rowan's father, "WHY WHY WHY?? I DON'T UNDERSTAND!!" I was 100% there with Rowan, struggling to understand, fighting to accept, and lost somewhere between grief and anger.

Anyone who reads my reviews regularly will know that I don't usually comment on writing style. By Laura's prose was so gorgeous. That's one of the things that really pulled me in and made this book feel real and genuine. The words were so heavy with emotion and I practically got lost in it. I swear to you, they were real thoughts from a real grieving person.

Unless you hate cry books or can't stand sadness in stories, I recommend Me Since You to EVERYONE! You will feel EVERYTHING! Most of it will be sad, heart-wrenching, and confusing. You won't understand why Rowan's father chose to leave his family. WHY WHY WHY??? How could he do that? You will feel immense grief, an overwhelming sense of unfairness, and deep, tragic loss. This book is that powerful. It will shake you to your core and you will feel the effects for weeks.

One of the best books I've ever read. Period.
Profile Image for Michelle (Pink Polka Dot Books).
489 reviews344 followers
April 11, 2014
Rowan is a normal teenager. A little rebellious. A little bit overtaken by her dominant BFF. She loves her family and worries about saving money for a car, what clothes to wear, and how people at school see her. All that changes the morning that a man decides to kill himself and his baby boy. Rowan's dad was the responding officer that morning, and while he's dealt with his share of tough situations over the years, the backlash that comes from the media and public because of this incident pushes him into a severe depression. For weeks he's unable to function, becoming someone that Rowan doesn't even know. Worse than that, Rowan knows that if she hadn't been skipping school that day, her dad wouldn't have been anywhere near the bridge and the terrible thing that happened. Another person touched by this deed was Eli. He and Rowan form a bond of sorts while she's trying to hold everything together.

Then another tragedy strikes and nothing will ever be the same again.


My Thoughts:
This is my first book by this author, so I wasn't sure what to expect here. I don't know if her other books are this dark and deep, but next time I read one (and there will be a next time), I'm making sure I'm mentally prepared for it.

For the first 1/3 of this book, I was in love with it. I loved Rowan and how real she was. She wasn't a "good girl", but she wasn't a rebellious bad-ass either. She was just a teenager. She reminded me of me or any of my friends. Then holy mother of God, this book got dark. The entire last 2/3rds of the book was just death, depression, and people spiraling out of control. I honestly don't think I've read another book that had more death in it. Babies die for crying out loud (as in plural, more than one)!!

So I'm not saying that I didn't like the book. I did. Like I said, I really loved Rowan. And Eli was pretty amazing as well. But I really didn't know that we were going to have to go along with Rowan and her mother on their entire, giant grieving process. Not to be cold-hearted, but it got old after a while. I get it, you are destroyed over this.... does the whole book have to be about that?? And it might be authentic (I'm sure it is), but every time they took one step forward, they would take 3 steps back. It was really frustrating to read about. And the thing is I was really pissed at Rowan's friend Nadia for feeling the exact same way I was, so that makes me feel kind of shitty for saying it at all. She had every right to grieve and grieve however she needed to. I just didn't want to read about the same thing for that many pages.

Besides the characters and writing, I also loved the overall "ripple effect" theme. The idea that a tragedy touches so many more people than you think. The idea that tiny little things that you do can have consequences that you never saw coming. I'm not one to second guess the little stuff. You could what-if yourself to death that way... but it is worth thinking about actions and consequences.

So should you read this?? If you are in an emotional reading mood: YES!! This is a beautifully written book and it's about some really important stuff. But it's dark and sad, emotional and there's a constant heartbreak that comes and keeps on coming.

OVERALL: I enjoyed the characters and the beautiful way it was written, but it was a little too dark for my tastes. I needed something positive to happen in this book and I never fully got that. It's worth reading, but you gotta be in that deep, emotional mood.

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Profile Image for Jasprit.
527 reviews732 followers
March 19, 2014
“I will never understand how life can rip your heart
out with one hand and then give you a small,
warm piece of it back with the other?
How can something so good come from something
so terrible?”


Sometimes trying a new book by an author that you’ve never tried before can be daunting. But by just reading the first few pages of Me Since You, I knew I would love this book and would read anything written by Wiess right away. Wiess captured the grief that Rowan and her family had to go through really well. Not only that but how people reacted differently when they had to deal with unexpected grief.

Rowan’s father had been a police officer for the last twenty years, he’d had his fair share of tough cases to deal with, but had learned to cope with consequences and move onto the next situation well. But the situation he found himself and the backlash that he had to deal with ended up being way too much to deal with. Not only did it have an impact on his career, his way of thinking, but also his family’s life in a major way. It was hard seeing a man, who had such a reputable reputation and such a strong person become a fraction of the man that he used to be right before his family’s eyes. Rowan and her mum were constantly there for him, but sometimes this is never enough.

And so the next few weeks were really trying for Rowan and her mother. First of all after everything which happened it was so unexpected, Rowan had several important questions, they knew that the lives he wasn’t able to save, had hit him really hard, but they thought things were getting better. And on top of this Rowan did blame herself for the escalation of events, if only she hadn’t skipped school, would her dad have even been the first one to attend the scene? It was really tough watching Rowan go through this difficult period,

There isn’t really one singular path to follow when dealing with grief, but having a strong support network can make a big difference. And with people dealing with grief in different ways, it is important this support is there in the sidelines, not being so overwhelming, but also ready to step in wherever possible. This is where Rowan lucked out in some ways and was dealt a bad card in another. Rowan’s grandparents were the sweetest, although we didn’t get to see much of them, they really held Rowan and her mum together. They let them do their own thing for as long as they needed to, but also were there to put their foot down when it was necessary. Whereas Rowan’s supposed best friend, don’t even let me get started on her, it’s usually major life events, which really go on to show you who your true friends are and Rowan was seriously better off without her.

Me Since You was a gorgeously written story, despite the story focusing on a really heartbreaking aspect, the story wasn’t bleak at all, and I enjoyed watching Rowan slowly picking herself up and find her place in the world, when a big part of her was missing. Wiess was also able to weave some small “ray of sunshine” moments which were quick to bring a glowy feel good feeling. Overall Me Since You really impressed me much more than I was expecting that I cannot wait to read more of Wiess’s books.
Profile Image for Kels.
315 reviews165 followers
September 8, 2015
"Can a person actually die of sadness? How about of a broken heart?"


Big sigh. I was not prepared for the emotional turmoil that this book inflicted on me. Goodness. It was such a stressing and emotional read, from the very opening chapters at that. I just... *stuffs mouth with ice cream*

Laura Weiss has an effortless beauty in her writing that is mesmerizing. It keeps you flipping pages, even while your heart is breaking. I fell in love with her prose, which encompassed and depicted Rowan's, the MC, voice and emotions perfectly. But while I did admire the writing, I couldn't help but notice that the pacing was pretty much at a flatline. There's a huge chunk in the middle where everything just slows down, and nothing really substantial happens. This made me put down the book quite a bit, both to get away from all the grief and also in an effort to renew my interests.

Despite this being such a depressing read, It remained a challenge for me to truly connect and feel for Rowan. She annoyed me so much! She was so selfish and uncaring. It was like all she cared about was her trivial problems. There was one part (gosh I wish I would have wrote down the quote) where Rowan debates going to her dad and comforting him while he's breaking down in the kitchen, but she weighs it against being late for her date, and I truly wanted to slap her. There were just so many times where she had opportunities to talk to her dad and connect with him, and not only did she not take any of them, but she also acted so immaturely. She threw fits and tantrums, and was so much more concerned about being with her friends, or making goo-goo eyes over a stranger, sigh, I just disliked her character so so much. I understand teens are in their own little bubble and have hugely selfish tendency, which may very well be what the author wanted to depict, but seriously I don't know what teen would just disregard their parents emotions as easily and flippantly as Row did. But maybe I shouldn't be all that surprised. I mean, look at her best friend, Nadia, who might possibly be the most self-obsessed and inconsiderate person in Row's school. Gosh, Nadia grated on my everlasting nerves.

The romance was another issue I had with Me Since You. It just... I don't know... it just didn't feel right. Here we have Rowan, who goes from crushing on one senior, to having insta-attraction to Eli, who was on the bridge when Corey kills himself. Hmm... yeah I just didn't get it. She seriously becomes so consumed with running into him and developing feelings for him, which is part of the reason she totally disregards what her dad is going through and fails to see the misery he's having to cope with. And yeah, that sort of turned me off completely to whatever feelings she thought she was developing for Eli. But the romance is pretty choppy and sparse within the text, and I think that had Eli and Rowan connected as friends I would have liked this novel even more.

Ultimately, this was a deeply affecting novel, and I have so much respect for the good cops out there who put everything on the line when they put on their badge. Yes, there were some flaws that kept this from being more than a three star read for me, but this book has impacted me so much on an emotional level, and that's quite a feat for any author.
Profile Image for AH.
2,005 reviews370 followers
February 24, 2014
Initial Thoughts: About a 3 or 3.5 star read for me. This was a difficult read for me. It was outside my usual genre and it dealt with depression, suicide, and death, along with the aftermath for the surviving family members. It's sad. It will make you cry. It's hard to read, just because of the emotions.

The Review:

Christal and I read this book as part of the Jumble Your Genres Challenge from Lovin' los Libros. You can read our thoughts on Me Since You at Badass Book Reviews.

Me Since You is outside my usual genre. Usually I read for entertainment and to escape reality, so I tend to avoid books about realistic things. Give me vampires, werewolves, zombies and the like - no problem. Social issues books? I run away scared.

So here goes. My rating is probably lower than it should be because I was quite bored at the beginning of the book, probably for the first 100 pages or so. I think it was because I was a little frustrated with the situation that our main character Rowan had to deal with. Rowan's father was a policeman and he was on call the day a young father (along with his infant son) jumped off the bridge to their death. The event was captured on video and the town blamed Rowan's father for the deaths. Also on the bridge was Eli and his dog Daisy - we'll get back to them later on.

I found the townspeople just awful. Their treatment of Rowan's father was horrendous. I also couldn't stand Rowan's best friend Nadia. With a best friend like her, who needs enemies.

What fascinated me a little about this book was the amount of time Rowan spent on thinking about how if she hadn't skipped school that day, her father would not have been on the bridge, and the events may have changed. Can something small change events later on?

Oh, back to Eli and Daisy. Eli and his dog Daisy were probably one of the few reasons that I enjoyed this book. Eli understood grief and the healing process and his rescue dog Daisy was one of the last things he got from his father. Daisy will make you cry, so have plenty of tissue on hand. Eli is perfect for Rowan because he understands how she is feeling, perhaps a little too well.

Me Since You takes a look at how people handle grief. Rowan's mother is devastated (and understandably so). She shuts down, spending her days on the couch and living like a hermit and adopting way too many cats. Rowan, on the other hand, is forced to grow up very fast. She takes care of her mother and writes in her grief journal. The writing is poignant and she takes the time to figure out her feelings and begin to heal.

I found that due to the subject matter Me Since You was a difficult read. I was sad, exhausted, and I could not stop crying.

Note: Triggers - suicide
Profile Image for Kaylin.
25 reviews10 followers
January 4, 2020
Wow. Just wow. I lost my mom October 31st, 2019. Not the same way Rowan lost her father, but I felt as if I could connect on a personal level. Lots of tears during this read!
Profile Image for Debbie.
295 reviews129 followers
March 19, 2014
good


3.5 Stars

Me Since You is a story about grief and regret. It's a story that will hopefully draw a few tears, if not buckets full. It will leave you tired and drained but in a good way. Hopefully you'll be able to connect to this piece of art just like I had. It's such an emotional roller coaster that has a few dips and stops but is great.

Unfortunately, this novel has a hard time being realistic at moments. The times when Rowan needs Eli the most, he's miraculously there. No one goes to prom without a ticket just because they felt like walking in the neighbourhood. Also for someone who knows grief so well, I felt like Eli handled these death a bit unrealistically. He's so unbelievably happy whenever he's with Rowan even after everything horrible happens and I just didn't believe that someone can be that happy after someone they know dies.

What I did like about this book is the breathtaking decline of Rowan's father. It's so sad and heartbreaking and I loved every minute of it. It took many weeks and I loved that Laura Wiess doesn't rush it nor does she pull it out of proportion especially Rowan and the way she reacts to her father's depression.

Overall, Me Since You is such a sad story with an even sadder ending. However it's a moving story that I really enjoyed despite its few flaws. I recommend this to just about everyone because of the fact that many people have gone through the things that both Rowan and Eli have gone through. Death touches the lives of everyone no matter how big or how small.
Profile Image for Claire.
2,303 reviews704 followers
February 24, 2014
2.5 Stars.

Me Since You reminds me of a very long Winter, or a cloudy day, You wait and wait for the sun to shine through, and the Spring to rear it's head, but ultimately it stays cloudy, and hey it's January so suck it up Winter is going to be around for a long while yet.

Well written, developed story. Can't say I was that enamoured with Rowan, she seemed to take everything so personally, or somehow twist it up so much she managed to make it her fault.

If you are looking for some out and out angst, this is the one for you. But it left me a little cold in parts. Readable, but I can say for sure it won't be one I will pick up again in a hurry.

ARC provided via Netgalley in exchange for the above honest review.
Profile Image for Alex.
575 reviews74 followers
March 15, 2014
2.5 stelline!
Questo libro si é rivelato tutto, fuorché quello che mi sarei aspettata.
Lento, triste ed angosciante oltre ogni possibile immaginazione...
Non fraintendetemi, pretendo che una lettura mi faccia vivere emozioni intense e contrastanti, ma questo libro é un funerale continuo!
Una girandola di emozioni soffocanti, che molto spesso diventavano "pesanti"da leggere.
Pagine e pagine di dolore, sofferenza, rimorso, rimpianto e colpa, per non avere saputo prevedere l'inevitabile.
Rowan é una protagonista che in parte ho apprezzato, ma le due decisioni molto spesso hanno fatto a cazzotti con la ragione. Poi come se tutte le disgrazie, di questo sfortunato effetto domino, non le fossero bastate...
Ha una migliore amica che definirei una "biscia schifosa", dato che non si é curata minimamente del sui dolore!
Poi c'è Eli, che ho trovato: adorabile, premuroso, attento e comprensivo. L'unica nota positiva, insieme al suo cane Daesy, di tutto l'intero libro. Purtroppo ha avuto un ruolo alquanto marginale nella trama.
Insomma litri e litri di lacrime, per un libro la cui sinossi mi aveva totalmente ingannata!
*apre barattolo di nutella, e cerca di uscire da questo stato di tristezza post libro angoscisnte*
Profile Image for Sarah.
820 reviews151 followers
Shelved as 'not-for-me'
January 24, 2014
The older I get, the harder time I have with grief-filled books. Me Since You is beautifully written and emotionally evocative, but I couldn't keep reading it--there was just too much for me. If you want an ugly cry, an lovely writing, this is a good choice.

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Apropos of nothing, I really love the cover model's hair.
Profile Image for Tracey.
625 reviews467 followers
March 11, 2014
"Grief..." She shakes her head. "You can't hide from it. There is no over, under or around it. No avoiding. It will stay until you make your way through it."

This book right here broke my heart. The subject matter is so intense. It is full of such raw honesty and heartbreak. I lived every single one of the emotions as they were experienced throughout the story. I'm not even sure what I was expecting when I started reading this, but it definitely wasn't what I got. It was everything I could have possibly hoped for in a book with such emotion. My heart was in no way prepared for the intensity of this story.

This review is going to be so hard to write without giving away spoilers, but I will try my very hardest. Me Since You is not a book that will have you continually swooning over a hot guy and the romance. Although there is a beautiful romance in the book. It is not a book that will have you all giddy with happiness. But there are some happy moments in there as well. What it is, is a book that will make you feel. It will have you asking why. It will have you thinking and questioning.

Rowan Areno, is a normal sixteen year old girl. She sneaks out to parties, gets drunk occasionally, crushes on boys, and she's about to skip school. It's that last one that is going to have life altering ramifications. It will lead to a chain of events that will change Rowan's life and have her questioning everything around her. It will have her dealing with pain, like nothing she has ever experienced before.

"We grow up believing that bad things don't happen to good people... but sometimes they do. It's a hard truth to accept, that life is not fair."

I was on the edge of my seat for this whole book. I was never sure what was about to happen and was knocked for six each time there was a new development. There was always a sense of dread as I was reading but I never in a million years expected the story to go down the path that it did.

The characters in this story were so fleshed out. It was almost like I knew them personally. This story is told through Rowan's eyes, but I felt that I got to know all the characters really well. They all fitted perfectly into the story and each played their part. There wasn't one character that I felt was just there as a filler.

He looks at me like no other guy ever has, like he likes me and wants me to know it, like he's having a blast and is real enough not to hide it.

Rowan was a character that I couldn't help but like. Trying to find her place and fit in with her friends, but also not wanting to disappoint her slightly overprotective parents, especially her father, who is a policeman in the local community, so there are eyes and ears everywhere. As the chain of events began to unfold, her struggles with it all, her love for her family, the helplessness that she felt, all created this girl who was very real. I loved her connection and romance with Eli. He is dealing with his own struggles so he could understand what Rowan was dealing with. The one character that I had no time for was Nadia, Rowans best friend. And I use that term very loosely. She was a horrible girl. Completely self centred, and I couldn't help but wonder why Rowan was friends with her at all.

To say this book was amazing, feels wrong, because of the intense subject matter. But it was amazing. Laura Weiss took the most difficult of subject matters and wrote it so perfectly. The way the whole story played out, the tone and pacing, were all pretty spot on for me.

If you're looking for a story that will tug at your heart and keep you engrossed from start to finish, then look no further that Me Since You.

5/5 Fantastically Written, Emotional Stars.

This book was received form the publisher via NetGalley for my honest review.
Profile Image for Always Reading.
655 reviews227 followers
February 16, 2014
Me since this book

This is such a difficult book to rate! I really am having  a difficult time settling on a star rating. Normally I just rate on how enjoyable I found a book, but Me Since You was so thoroughly and heartbreakingly sad can I really say that I enjoyed myself reading it? Mmm, that might be a stretch...

So, if I can't do that, perhaps I should rate on writing quality? Well, actually, if we're going there, the present tense narrative and the unfathomable allergy to pronouns drove me slightly batty, so perhaps not.

I guess, then, the most important question should be whether or not I would recommend others to read it, despite its moroseness. And, surprisingly, the answer to that is yes. It is definitely worth your time, and was extremely thought-provoking and poignant. Excellent brain food. But you'd need to prepare yourself mentally before going in.

So, what is it about? Well, the story follows Rowan, the sixteen-year-old daughter of a police officer who is witness to a double suicide/murder - A mentally unstable man jumps off a bridge with his newborn son right in front of him. Rowan's father struggles to add the weight of this to the endless list of other atrocities he's seen over the twenty years of his career, and might have been able to bear it, but the dashboard cam from his police vehicle captured the whole thing, and the video soon goes viral, attracting all the hate and vitriol you can imagine from anonymous online users who have an opinion on just about everything - including whether or not he did his job properly that day. It's all too much for him, and it's not long before he disappears onto a fog of depression, taking his family - Rowan and her mother- with him.

To me, this is where Wiess excelled. The way she conveyed the father's decent, and the impotent frustration of both Rowan and her mother during this time, was exceptional. To take a man from someone who was always in command, the main authority figure of the family, to someone who can barely dress himself, was a cruel torment. And understandably, Rowan feels equal measures of compassion and rage for his situation. It was like he was there in person, but not in spirit. And was both fascinating and devastating to read.

Then, as a subplot, there is Eli, a local boy who was also there on the bridge that day. He's a sympathetic ear and romance soon develops, but this part was by no means the focus of Me Since You.

Overall, I found the book to be engrossing, and I'm glad I read it, but I can tell you it left me hankering for something much, much lighter afterwards. You've been warned!

3 Stars ★★★
ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Tez.
831 reviews217 followers
May 31, 2014
I went into this novel expecting a story of a school shooting. What I got instead was something very different - and unexpectedly triggering. We're talking not being able to sleep because of crying until 4AM.

So my TRIGGER WARNINGS to you are also SPOILERS:



If you'd prefer something more specific:



You've been warned.
Profile Image for Molli Moran.
Author 7 books223 followers
January 1, 2014
One of THE best books I've ever read.

Hands down.

Gorgeous prose, real characters, and a respectful, honest dialogue about mental illness coupled with a profound look at grief and healing make this a stand-out novel that will linger with me for a long time to come.

(ALSO. Eli? SWOON.)
Profile Image for Tori.
284 reviews6 followers
August 26, 2014
Check out YA Book Queens for more reviews!

NOTE: I received this ARC from the publisher through NetGalley in return for an honest review.

Before reading this book, I wanted to pick up a nice feel-good contemporary book with a love interest that would make me want to swoon. Imagine my surprise when I cried halfway through reading this book. That's right, guys. I cried during this book. The emotional roller coaster that this book put me through was something that I was not anticipating whatsoever. I honestly had no idea how to cope with the idea that I was crying for a fictional character (I rarely cry for books or movies or TV shows. Just so you know, I did cry for Flat-Out Love though).

At first, this book is not what it seems to be. By reading the summary, you really get no accurate idea of what this book is about. From reading the part where Wiess captures "the visceral emotion of a girl’s journey from innocence to devastating loss," I totally thought the main girl Rowan was going to get raped by somebody (namely Justin from the beginning) and then she was going to have to deal with the emotional trauma of being violated. But as soon as the scene went from happy-go-lucky just-got-busted-skipping-school Rowan's point of view to I'm-a-cop and I've-seen-bad-things Rowan's dad's point of view, I knew that this book was about way more than just the woes of being a sixteen year old girl.

I really don't know how to explain this book without giving major spoilers away. (I read a review of this book halfway through my own reading of it, and I got very mad because the entire plot was spoiled for me in a review marked no spoilers.) But even though the big "twist" was spoiled for me, I was still very shocked and saddened when the twist occurred.


spoilers are the STDs of the book world. Protect yourself. If you have a spoiler, be responsible and warn your reading partners.

— Lauren DeStefano (@LaurenDeStefano) January 26, 2014


I loved the romance in this book between Rowan and Eli. It was very innocent and seemingly realistic. Things weren't rushed and them sharing a feeling of emotional loss wasn't an incentive for them to hook up. No, they got together and hung out on their own time regardless of what was going on around them. The fact that they had that emotional loss in common was what really kept them together in those three months where Rowan was holed up in her shell, I think.

One thing I didn't really enjoy about this book, though, was the pacing. I get that this a contemporary read and it's supposed to be slow and steady...but I just really wanted some action to go on. I wanted something big to happen, and it just didn't. (Well, you know, until 50% in.) This isn't that big of a deal to me, but I wish that every chapter kept me thoroughly engaged, which didn't happened. I have to admit though that after the prologue (which I totally thought was chapter one...) was over, I was really interested. Sadly, things slowed down about 20% in.

In all, this was an enjoyable read, and it really tug at my heartstrings (does such a thing exist?). I really can't put my emotions into words when describing my feelings. I think if you enjoy a nice, thoughtful read (think Looking for Alaska, Thirteen Reasons Why, I Will Save You, etc.) then this is the book for you. Be sure to pick this up when it hits the shelves in two weeks because, holy cow did this book make me feel things.
Profile Image for Michelle.
1,988 reviews231 followers
Read
February 24, 2014
Teens and tragedy appear to go hand-in-hand lately. It is unfortunate in a way because it makes the teen years much more difficult than they already are. Still, there is an attraction between the two that is difficult to ignore, if only because misery does love company. Besides, people find solace in another person’s pain – to some extent.

The most emotionally difficult scenes within the story are also the ones that emphasize Ms. Wiess’ mastery of the emotions within the story. Rowan’s, as well as her mother’s, struggles through the grief process are tough, honest, and surprisingly gripping. One expects to be a remote observer to the proceedings, but this ends quickly with Ms. Wiess’ knack for capturing in a few taut words everything Rowan emotionally and mentally experiences. The reader becomes something more than a bystander, not just a witness to Rowan’s pain but a fellow sufferer.

Ms. Wiess touches on the debilitating effects of depression, not just on the sufferer but also on the sufferer’s loved ones, with grace and gravitas. As a result, it is an intense story that makes one reevaluate the growing concern about bullying, especially online. She shows that one cannot just hope to wake up one day and feel happy, that it is not a mindset one can change at will, that it is truly a disease every bit as insidious and damaging as the sneakiest cancer or pathogen.

There is nothing truly remarkable about Rowan. She is not the queen bee of her school’s hierarchy, nor is she the delightfully quirky free spirit who follows her own social rules. She is neither a talented athlete nor artist. She is a normal teen with normal fears, desires, dreams, and parental battles. She seeks independence without gaining too much adult responsibility and looks for ways to test the boundaries set by her parents. There is nothing good or bad about her position. She is a typical teen, but one who has to experience the toughest type of loss. Rowan’s ordinariness is refreshing because it is a reminder that even those who spend their entire lives flying under the radar and living by the rules cannot hide from grief. It is also significant because it allows readers to better empathize with her, as there is nothing extraordinary about her that makes it impossible to step into her shoes and experience her emotions.

Me Since You is not a cheery novel. The tragedy that occurs to Rowan is almost as bad as one imagines it will be, and there is no getting around the seriousness of the plot. This does not mean that the novel is entirely depressing. There are hopeful moments and scenes of growth and maturity that offset the more upsetting scenes, with the story ending on a positive note that no matter how bad things get, they almost always improve. It is as important a message as one could portray to its teen audience, and one worth remembering for adult readers as well.
Profile Image for Mitchii.
802 reviews254 followers
February 8, 2014
Rowan and I, you could say we were in the same situation (that's far as I can share). But we’re not on the same page as far as the grieving goes. I mean, every one of us deal with this kind of pain differently. And even though we had a common denominator I sort of felt detached to her. I guess it was too overwhelming to me and I wasn’t completely committed to her issues.

Rowan’s father is a police officer and one day, he failed to save the guy from committing suicide. And that’s where it all started. He was blamed by many because he was unable to save the guy. His father become depressed and decided to kill himself. She was shocked with his decision and from there things were spiraled to worse. Her family was starting to fall apart. It hit her mom pretty bad; and the question lingered on her: why did he do it?

There were few tear-jerker books that I have read but only a few managed to elicit heavy emotions out of me. In fact only two books had made me bawling like a baby. I expected Me Since You by Laura Wiess to be one of them. Unfortunately I didn’t cry, I wasn’t emotional but I do understand the stages she went after losing someone. It was even harder that the person she cares inflicted it to himself. Of course questions and uncertainties will arise on herself, on her family. Doubt, regret, guilt can be overpowering.

It’s also a wonder how a single event can shook your life and changed you forever. I understand her regrets and sadness. People might have pushed his father to come up to that decision and it consumed him. Even though he took precautions, he still went with it. It’s pretty easy to understand Rowan and the things she needs to do in order to cope with what happened. It’s not only with happened that you need to deal with, it also as hard or probably harder on what comes after that. And that’s also what we got to see in here. I also liked the addition of subtle romance in there. They shared something and because Eli knew how it felt he was able to understand what’s going on with her.

I liked it, I wasn’t really into it and I didn’t shed a single tear, but it was still an eye opener to me. It’s remarkable how efficiently the theme was injected to the story. I really liked the part where she got a note from her dad. She’d always been wondering and she really hoped it was from him. It makes it easy—even for bit and even if it’s just gradual, at least she got some sort of acknowledgement from him. She finally got herself to continue after all that.

This review appeared first on Aeropapers

3.5/5
Profile Image for Chelsea Pitcher.
Author 6 books454 followers
December 20, 2013
It's been a long time since I've found a book like ME SINCE YOU, one that compelled me to carry it around with me everywhere I went, because I didn't want to stop reading it for a second. I gobbled it up in a manner of days. And it will resonate with me for a long time.

There is so much about this book to love. The writing is beautiful and engaging. The characters are relatable. The story is heart-breaking, yet addictive. It's rare to find a book that leads one through so many different emotions: hope, fear, dread, sadness, heartache, and back to hope again.

ME SINCE YOU makes so many interesting points, from the ways people grieve differently, to the way internet bullying can affect human beings. We live in an age where people attack each other behind a computer screen and suffer little to no outward consequence. Yet each of us, from the person being attacked, to the person doing the attacking, is internally changed because of it. Watching Rowan's father suffer vicious and thoughtless internet attacks was painful, but it makes an important point: anonymous or not, our actions shape the world, and we need to be aware of what we're putting into it. The effects of our actions can be so much more devastating than we may think.

I loved many characters in ME SINCE YOU, especially Eli. As others have noted in their reviews, Eli was NOT a cure-all love interest. He was not the knight in shining armor who saved Rowan from her grief. He WAS a kind, genuine, believable character that endured plenty of grief on his own. His character was flawed but beautiful, and although he (or anyone else) could never save Rowan from her family's tragedy, he did end up being just what she needed at times, and I think she returned the favor for him.

ME SINCE YOU was at times difficult to read. The story was so believable, the emotions so raw, that even now there are certain passages I can't glance at without tearing up. But none of this is bad. The way this story pulled me through the darkness and into the light was a beautiful thing. In a way, it helped me work through some of my own past tragedies and see the light at the end of the tunnel. Books are like magic that way. In reading about someone's else's journey, from trauma to healing, you might begin to heal yourself.

I recommend ME SINCE YOU to everyone.
Profile Image for Emily Mead.
569 reviews
January 7, 2016

Review title: No, YOU cried your eyes out.

This was one of those “Lost-in-Mount-TBR” books.

You know the ones.

You buy them on a whim thinking OOH I saw a good review for this…I must have it! I’m pretty sure I bought it for the Book Outlet Boxing Day sale in 2014 or something.

Anyway this meant that I really didn’t expect to love it so much.

(Or cry so much. Seriously, guys, I was a mess)

Let me tell you that I read a LOT of contemporary YA. And this is one of the best treatments of mental illness that I’ve seen.

And that’s not always easy to read – it was raw and difficult and unexpected. From the blurb, I was not expecting a really hard-hitting emotional read, but oh my GOSH did that come out of nowhere.

Depression is still stigmatised everywhere. It’s sad but it happens, and the way people suffer without saying anything is awful.

ANYWAY so I love the developing friendship between Rowan and Eli.

They both have their own issues and sometimes that inhibits their relationship, but they’re ALWAYS there for each other. GAH. It was so cute. And Eli gave Rowan space when she needed it, as well.

Eli’s had tragedies of his own and they’re not immediately fixed because of a relationship, which I loved. It’s not perfect because Rowan is obviously grieving, but it blossoms into something really lovely.

Not only does Laura Wiess perfectly capture the difficulty of mental illness, she also creates such a detailed, complex portrait of grieving.

Everyone knows there are no “stages” of grief. You don’t just complete them and then bibbity-bobbity-boo, you’re cured.

It goes backwards and forwards.

And it’s messy.

And it doesn’t just happen all at once.

I liked how Laura Wiess also included Rowan’s family in the grieving process – her mum, especially, but also her grandparents (they’re often so neglected in YA, for some reason). That was really, really nice.

Basically, if you’re up for a good ugly cry, this one’s for you.

Because a certain something at the END of the book meant that I could barely read the damn pages. If you’ve read this, I’m sure you know what I mean.

I don’t think I’ve cried this much in a book since I read Second Chance Summer (and that was the last 50 pages of solid crying…it’s a marathon effort, I’m telling you).
Profile Image for Brandi Kosiner .
995 reviews295 followers
January 30, 2014
I wanted to read Me Since You because I have read Laura Wiess before and I liked her dark contemporary and writing style, so of course, I wanted to pick this up. Luckily it was available on Edelweiss and I was able to grab a copy.
Me Since You is a dark book, about a girl and boy connected by a crime and then their friendship and budding relationship deepens as they spend time together and as their pasts line up and they are able to offer understanding and a warm shoulder or hug at moments of despair.
The format is pretty unique because the first part switches from first person to third and is from different pov but then it goes back to first person with our narrator Rowan.
I like that we get glimpses of what a normal life she lived before tragedy struck her family and brought her closer to a boy that wasn't even on her radar before.
We get to see the cruel and thoughtless nature of not only high schoolers but also adults as the backlash spreads from the crime videos. It is hard to accept that a crime can just be tragic, people want to point fingers and assign blame, and it can get ugly. Because there are real people on the receiving end and words can be pretty darn painful.
The crime and the following events are very emotional, and seeing it through Rowan's eyes was hard because of all that she and Eli have on their plates and dealing with.
I liked their romance and that it wasn't all consuming, but that Eli let her put her grief first, but also that they deeply shared with each other. That she had a confidant in him even when her best friend didn't understand and support her like she should have.
I also really appreciated the real portrayal of depression and grief. That it doesn't just last two weeks and you are over it. It is lasting, and you feel a whole spectrum of emotions. It hit me on the personal level too because of the personal connection that some of you would realize right away if you've followed my blog and know my backstory.
The ending was powerful, real, and laced with hope and healing, but no magic cures and realistic just like the rest of the book.

Bottom Line: Dark and emotional book with a grieving heroine.
Profile Image for Lilysbookblog.
229 reviews64 followers
November 26, 2014
I feel like a complete loner writing this review. I may be in the 1% of readers who aren’t head over heels in love with this book. I didn’t find myself crying or needing to call relatives to remind them how much they mean to me after reading this book. I, unforteuntly, felt no emotional connection with Me Since you. I tried, I really did but i never found myself invested in the story or any of the characters. And this sucks so much because I had specifically picked this book up thinking it would shatter my world. I had read so many five star reviews of people gushing about how tear jurking this book was and I was just so sure I would be a slobbering mess by the end of it. But I wasn’t.

Me Since You is a relatively short book, but it took me four days to read. This is a big no no in my book. I need a book to make me want to read it, I hate having to force myself to finish a book. And unforteuntly Me Since You was one of those books i had to make myself finish. In all fairness Me Since You isn’t a bad book, no it’s in retrospect supposed to be a really sad and emotional read and while the theme of the book was serouis and could have had me crying I just didn’t fall for the execution of the book. It all felt wrong. Everything was just sort of scratched upon, nothing felt like it went far enough.

Me Since You is filled with characters I wanted to punch in the face, our MC’s supposedly bestfriend being at the top of my list. But while we’re on the topic of our MC i have to mention I could never quite connect with her. There was this weird sort of vibe I got from her that I could never really move past. I like my MC’s to be strong and I like them to be damaged but I hate when their weak from the start. From the beginning of the book Rowan was really annoying me, she didn’t stand up for herself or make her own decisions from the first page so we didn’t start off on the right foot. No other character really made any strong impression on me, including the love interest, which was a huge shame. There was so much potential in him but it just wasn’t explored.

Me Since You just wasn’t my type of book. I usually love books with such huge themes like this one but for varouis reasons I just couldn’t connect with it.
Profile Image for Sarah Elizabeth.
4,670 reviews1,269 followers
January 17, 2014
(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to Simon and Schuster and Edelweiss.)
16-year-old Rowan seems to always be getting in trouble for things, and even gets brought home by the police – something that her parents especially dislike considering that her father is also a police officer.
When her father is unable to stop a man from killing himself and his young son, he begins to suffer from depression though, and doesn’t seem like himself at all.
Can Rowan’s father get through this depression? And can anyone really know how he’s really feeling?


This was an okay, but while it was sad in places, it was also quite boring in places too.

Rowan was an okay character, although I found her to be quite stupid and immature at times. She did things knowing that she would get in trouble with her parents and/or the cops if she was caught, yet did them anyway. She also made some really bad decisions, and didn’t really seem to give people the respect they deserved.

The storyline in this was okay, but I did find myself bored a lot of the time. The sad event in this book was sad, but I also saw it coming from really early on. The characters behaviours after this event was fairly typical given the situation, but while I felt sorry for them, the story didn’t really move me the way I expected it to.
There was a little bit of romance, but it was a bit of a side story rather than the main storyline.
The thing in this story that I liked the least has got to be Rowan’s friend Nadia, who wasn’t really sympathetic, and in fact made some really awful comments to Rowan regarding the bad thing that happened to her.
The ending to this was okay, and was probably the best part of the book for me. I liked how Rowan finally got a bit of closure, and finally learned to forgive as well.
Overall; a sad story, but not 100% engaging.
6.5 out of 10.
Profile Image for Angigames.
1,219 reviews
April 25, 2016
Ho acquistato questo libro convinta di avere tra le mani un’altra, semplice storia YA, con i suoi giovani amori, i suoi piccoli difetti e una necessaria leggerezza. E invece no, invece questo è uno YA completamente diverso, molto più cupo, più ostico e più lento. Ma queste caratteristiche non hanno sminuito la trama, me l’hanno fatta amare, perché è bello che alcuni autori affrontino temi del genere.
Questa è la storia di Rowan, 16enne in piena crisi adolescenziale, che salta la scuola e ama le feste, che vorrebbe essere notata di più dai ragazzi e trattata da grande, che ama tanto i suoi genitori, ma per orgoglio non glielo dimostra e che dopo la serata più bella della sua vita sarà costretta a fare i conti con una nuova terribile realtà: il suicidio del padre. In un momento, in un attimo tutto ciò che Rowan consce, percepisce, tutto ciò in cui crede, cambia per sempre. Come può una figlia accettare la morte, non accidentale, ma voluta dell’amato genitore, di quel padre che la doveva proteggere, amare e crescere?
Sconvolta, la ragazzina dovrà venire a patti con tante cose: il suo dolore e quello della madre, il non sentirsi capita, il non voler andare avanti e soprattutto una rabbia divorante contro quel genitore che l’ha abbandonata per sempre…
Non è stata una lettura facile e non è una lettura da fare se non si è dell’umore adatto, questo è sicuro. La Wiess è stramaledettamente brava ad analizzare il lutto di Rowan, con i suoi periodi neri, le sue follie, le lacrime e le domande. L’ultima parte mi ha quasi ucciso e il personaggio di Eli è perfetto per questa storia, perché è l’unico che capisce la situazione avendola vissuta lui stesso. Gli ultimi capitoli sono stati un fiume di lacrime, eppure ho chiuso il libro con una nuova consapevolezza.
Sento che questa lettura mi ha insegnato qualcosa e ne sono immensamente felice
Profile Image for Kim at Divergent Gryffindor.
470 reviews132 followers
May 5, 2015
Sixteen-year-old Rowan Areno's life changes as she watches her father spiral deeper and deeper into depression. After failing to convince a man not to commit suicide with his newborn son, Rowan's dad, a police officer, blames himself. The depression hits, and after fighting a hard battle, her dad loses and commits suicide, leaving Rowan lost and disappointed. What's worse, he didn't even leave a note!

Me Since You is a book that I thoroughly enjoyed because of its uniqueness and how deeply I connected to it. Instead of starting the story after the suicide like most books would, Me Since You started from the very beginning and took me through the entire journey - the depression, how it was fought, the suicide, how it affected the ones left behind, and finally, the healing process. Laura Weiss possessed the ability to make the readers understand, and by doing so, took everyone in an emotional roller coaster ride.

During Rowan's healing process, she met Eli, who was also battling his own demons. I loved how Eli was not pushy at all, while being able to be there for Rowan. He gets Rowan's situation, even though his experience is not exactly the same. I loved how in finding solace with each other, Rowan and Eli were finally able to reconcile with their own tragedies.

This book holds a special place in my heart because I saw someone close to me fight the same battle, and I really felt a strong connection with the book and its characters. Everything just felt so real, and I commend Laura Weiss for writing about depression and suicide realistically and truthfully. It was truly a great read, and I recommend anyone who finds this interesting to give it a shot.
Profile Image for Deyse .
290 reviews26 followers
Shelved as 'dnf'
November 11, 2014
This book was probably the hardest to put down because I started really liking it, since the start the relationship between Rowan and her father was touching and I really liked the friendship-possible-romance between her and Eli but this book hit a point where it was so depressing that it became painful to read it and I could only read in small doses - until I couldn't take anymore.

I think readers who like books about grief and depression will love this one since is extremely touching but be aware that is very realistic and doesn't take short cuts when showing the pain of Rowan situation.
Profile Image for Sara (sarabara081).
672 reviews336 followers
May 25, 2016
A very powerful story about grief and how it affects everyone differently. It brings up a lot of important issues like depression, the what-ifs in life, family, and what friendship is or should be. I was very emotional throughout the entire novel but I found it to be an important read that I'm thankful to have given a chance.
Profile Image for Amy.
1,610 reviews164 followers
February 2, 2014
Oh, boy.

Faithful readers, Laura Wiess is not content to show you sadness and discontent amongst the teen set. No. She wants to grab you by the throat, then use her other hand to rip your heart out.

So you might want to grab a box of tissues before you read this one.

Rowan is a sixteen-year-old high school sophomore determined to skip school one day with her bestie Nadia, who has arranged for the girls to meet up with two hot upper classmen. But things don't go as planned, largely because Rowan's father is a police officer, and his brethren are EVERY. WHERE. Oh, it works out swell for Nadia, who heads off with the two boys. Rowan gets a police escort home.

Her father quickly joins her there to harangue her on her choices. They are interrupted by a police call that sends her dad to an overpass, where a "mentally unstable" individual holding an infant stands, apparently about to commit suicide. A passerby, a high schooler named Eli who's out taking his dog to the vet, attempts to talk the man down. When Rowan's father races off to join them, a ripple effect of sorts occurs, stemming from Rowan's decision to skip school.

Later in the book, Eli explains his theory of the ripple effect to Rowan, and it's one of the themes of the novel. One seemingly insignificant thing can lead to something catastrophic, only you won't know it until it's too late.

Rowan's father goes to do his job, but the ensuing events build to one tragedy after another, leaving Rowan, her mother, and her family reeling.

Those ripples extend beyond Rowan's family, though. Her friends are affected as well. Or perhaps not as affected as Rowan thinks they should be. Nadia, for instance, seems somewhat put out by the inconveniences of Rowan's new reality. While this seems deplorable and abhorrent behavior, it rings completely true. She's a high school girl, and she doesn't want to - nor does she know how to - adapt to Rowan's world.

Fortunately, there is Eli. He knows all too well the loss Rowan feels, and he offers her the support she needs. Rowan, though, doesn't realize she needs support. She thinks everyone else does, and she is disgusted by other people's reactions and responses to what's happening in her family.

Some of those reactions are shared on the Internet, where everyone seems to be an expert in what Rowan's father should have done. People pass horrific, spiteful, evil judgments, and they affect more than just Rowan's dad. Her classmates, too, think they know better, and they have no compunction about sharing those thoughts with her. Those face-to-face confrontations, though, are warm and fuzzy compared to what's said in the anonymity of the Internet. Wiess clearly condemns this mindset, and by the time you're finished with the book, you will, too. If nothing else, you will think before you post an online comment.

[As an aside: I recently published a review that was not terribly complimentary. The author got in touch with me with a couple of questions she had regarding my review. We exchanged emails, and I came away feeling horrible for not loving her book. I re-read the review and wondered if I could 0r should edit the review, but I wound up keeping it intact. I didn't like the book, and my opinions are true and my own, but I didn't stop to think about how they would affect someone who put considerable time and care into writing her book, largely because she wasn't "real" to me until that email exchange.]

Wiess examines other elements here, too. You can grieve the loss of someone who is still alive because who he is now is not who you know him to be. How do we, as family members and as a society, treat depression? How should we? What is the "right" thing to do? What support do the depressed individual's family members need?

Then there is physical loss, specifically suicide. What right do we have to judge someone's choice in taking his life? How do we treat the victims - the surviving family members? What can - what should - we do for them?

This isn't to say that Wiess writes a pedantic, scolding novel. Yes, it makes you think, but it also warms your little heart. Rowan is complex. She's loyal, she's feisty, she's irascible, she's opinionated, she's hot-tempered, she's sweet, she's supportive, she's confused, and she's world weary. She wants love. She wants particular love from particular people. She wants her friends to instinctively know how to respond to what she's going through. She wants them to choose her. She wants people - her family, her friends - to choose her.

Who amongst us doesn't? Especially if you're a teenager. You don't just want to be chosen, you need it. You NEED people to choose you.

I do have one issue with the book, and to dissect it requires a minor bit of spoiler-telling, so if you don't want to know a little bit about one of the plot points, finish the review with these words: read the book. It's good.

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So if you're still here, then you don't mind a little spoiling.

It bothered me that Rowan's father committed suicide. Not because it was sad or heartbreaking - it certainly was - but because it seemed remarkably, pointedly out of character. He discusses suicide with Rowan and seems to find it unnecessarily cruel. That he would do that to his own family seems unconscionable. He knew how his depression affected them, but for him to go to this extreme and kill himself is almost shockingly extreme. Perhaps that's the point? Perhaps Wiess wants us to understand that his depression was so severe that he had this cataclysmic break with himself, taking him to the point where needing to leave this world overrode his intellectually knowing that what he was going to do would devastate, if not destroy, his family.

If that's the point she's trying to make, I still don't like it. Rowan's father was a strong man of strong principles. He feared for his daughter as she entered her waning high school years. He knew she needed him to watch out for her. Yet this man, whose life had been selfless and devoted, committed the most cruelly selfish act he could. It didn't fit. And the more I've thought about the book, the more I've wondered what this book could have been if Rowan's father had stayed and battled his depression. If he'd stayed and been true to himself.

But that's not the book Laura Wiess wrote, and I respect her decisions. I may not like them, but I respect them.


Thanks to NetGalley for the preview
Published on cupcake's book cupboard
@VivaAmaRisata
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