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Meet Me Here

3.38  ·  Rating details ·  596 ratings  ·  90 reviews
In a single night—graduation night—Thomas has to decide: Do what everyone has always expected of him? Or forge an entirely new path? Bryan Bliss’s absorbing examination of one boy struggling with expectations and realities will appeal to readers of Sara Zarr and Chris Crutcher.

Thomas is supposed to leave for the army in the morning. His father was Army. His brother, Jake,
Hardcover, 272 pages
Published May 31st 2016 by Greenwillow Books
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Olivia Williford (LivTheBookNerd) Sure, but I'm not sure if he'll like it.…moreSure, but I'm not sure if he'll like it.(less)

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 ·  596 ratings  ·  90 reviews

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Sarah Elizabeth
(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to HarperCollins and Edelweiss.)

“A familiar tightness pulls at my lungs. If there was a time to tell anyone, this is it. It would be so easy: open my mouth and say the words.
I’m not going to the army.”

This was a YA contemporary story about a boy who decided he didn’t want to join the army even though he’d signed up.

I felt quite sorry for Thomas because it was obvious how much his family expecte
Neil (or bleed)
Mar 06, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed, young-adult
The nostalgia is strong in this book that reading it makes me miss my childhood days and my childhood friends. In a stressful life I have right now, remembering and reminiscing my days as a child is such a sweet thing; a fulfilling moment that spread a warm feeling in my heart. And I'm thanking Meet Me Here for that.

Bliss's second YA novel is a remarkably well-written and well - told book. A profound novel with good pacing and realistic characters. Even the story only happens in one night, it co
Jun 16, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: A fan of Bon Iver, Damien Rice, and Ray Lamontagne


"I want to believe that we make our own plans. I want to believe that we are the ones in control of our lives."

OMG I was just telling everyone how I might be too old for YA books already since I couldn't connect or relate to my last few books at all. And then THIS. THIS BOOK HAPPENED (and now I love YA again lol).

For those who couldn't make sense of what I was trying to say; American Graffiti (directed by the epitome of genius Mr.George Luc
Tee loves Kyle Jacobson
Meet Me Here is an amazing read that will capture your heart right from the beginning. It deals with some tough issues that teens face everyday. From decisions on where to go to college to deciding on whether or not to get married, to deciding on whether or not to join the army.

In one day Thomas Bennett will go through hell and back. It is graduation night and Thomas is supposed to be partying and saying goodbye to everyone before he goes off to the army. Only Thomas does not want to go to the a
May 11, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Meet Me Here by Bryan Bliss *3.5 Stars*

For one night we follow Thomas in his pursuit of happiness. It’s graduation night and Thomas, an eighteen-year-old boy, is struggling with taking the path that he wants or meeting his father’s expectations. Thomas is supposed to be like his father and brother and join the Army. But after going to war, his brother Jake, came back from Afghanistan emotionally damaged and Thomas can’t recognize his own brother. That has made Thomas re-think what he truly want
Jaime Arkin
This just wasn't for me and it wasn't really what I was expecting.

It makes me sad to say that.

Full review to come.
Jan 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
Heck, that was beautiful. I'm definitely going to read whatever Bryan Bliss writes. ...more
Debbie Narh
Aug 17, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Meet me Here makes me so sad, guys.

And I get it. There’s a lot of shitty things going on. Thomas has a really sad life, his brother is not himself, his parents are abusive, and he has no say in anything. However, that doesn’t mean that by bringing in an old flame will solve his damn problems. This book is just a joke. I just hate how the plot is, the way Mallory randomly shows up in his life. Why? No? Stop? On top of all of this, Bliss has made the story insanely predictable (and I say this whil
Jul 04, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I don't really know what I was expecting from this, but I just didn't feel attached to the book at all. I didn't really care about any of the characters, and the plot didn't interest me and it never felt like it was going anywhere. It just wasn't for me. ...more
Jun 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I could not put this down! Such a great story that sucks you right in.
This review was originally posted on enlistedgif Meet Me Here by Bryan Bliss had some amazing moments and one giant tired trope. Set over the course of one crazy night, Thomas and his childhood best friend Mallory set out to see if they can complete their younger selves' bucket list before Thomas leaves for basic training. Thomas is supposed to be Army, like his father and brother before him, but his brother came back from fighting different and Thomas does not know if he can go through ...more
Sam (bookspiring)
Really good book. I liked it, which is weird… Keep reading. ;)

Some thoughts:
-This book was missing a lot of descriptions (What was Mallory's hair color, what was Thomas's eye color, what did their neighborhood look like), basic fill in the blanks. IT was hard to imagine the book in my head, but the story made up for it.
-This book is written from the leading male ,Thomas's POV. Guy POVs are hard to come by, but this one was written beautifully. It shows the emotions he's feeling from problems goi
Nina Test
Jun 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
I received this book from a good reads giveaway :) This is a story of a teenage boy on graduation night facing the decision of whether or not to join the army as his father and brother have. During the several events taking place on this night he reconnects with Mallory, an old friend, and faces challenges. It's a great story written well ! I love the cover for this book and the storyline.I enjoyed reading this one. I wish that the ending was elaborated somewhat more on. I felt the readers could ...more
Dec 19, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This had potential. It's the story of a boy scared to death to go to war like his father and brother, who has PTSD and a whole lot of baggage, and it feels like that's a story that should be told. But there's just too much going on, not enough description (what color is the protagonist's hair? Is Mallory tall? What kind of house do these people live in? Basic fill in the blanks) and there are too many damn characters by the end, and it's just plot plot plot without any grounding (WHAT TIME IS IT ...more
Naima ✩
Jul 11, 2018 rated it did not like it
This was just a big mess. It was all over the place and it felt like the author just strung together whatever words that came to his mind.

Firstly, the whole book takes place over the course of one night and I’ve never been a big fan of that. It was impossible to get attached. I just didn’t care about the characters or the plot. A plot that made no sense to me.

Idk what I was expecting but nothing mattered to me and it was boring.

And the way Mallory showed up back in Thomas’s life after years o
Forever Young Adult
Graded By: Brian
Cover Story: Zombie Horde
Drinking Buddy: Meh
Testosterone Level: PG-13 (some violence, adult situations, alcohol and drug use, crude humor)
Talky Talk: And the Moral Is...
Bonus Factor: Wingmen
Bromance Status: Distant Admirer

Read the full book report here.
Jul 14, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I started to really enjoy this and how natural the dialogue began in the first few chapters. And then I found myself skimming through the paragraphs and pages. Not a good sign. So I stopped. I was excited for Meet Me Here. The cover is beautiful and the premise excited me. Unfortunately, I could not keep motivated to read and gave up.
Sarah (YA Love)
I really, really liked this and am looking forward to sharing it with my students in the fall. I might even offer it as a read aloud option for my seniors. More Bryan Bliss books will be added to my TBR pile.
Jun 18, 2016 rated it it was ok
I had really high expectations for this book and it just didn't live up to it. The plot sounded intriguing but it didn't affect my emotions at all and it was just, to be honest, very bland. ...more
Dayna J.
"I think courage is somewhere between doing what you want to do and doing what you need to do."
Sep 18, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars! I liked how I couldn't predict what was going to happen in the book. There were lots of possibilities. Although, I needed more. Great book, nonetheless! ...more
Tricia F.
Thomas Bennett just graduated from high school. He is scheduled to continue the family tradition of entering the military by shipping out to boot camp early the next morning. Instead, he spends his last night with his former best friend Mallory.

Throughout the book, Thomas is trying to decide if he really wants to fulfill his commitment to the Army and live up to everyone's expectations, especially his father's who is an Iraqi War veteran. He is scared that he will become like his brother Jake,
Aug 01, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Minneapolis author, Bryan Bliss, seems on an upward trajectory. His most recent novel, "Meet Me Here," was written up in the "Star Tribune" as a young adult must read for the summer of 2016. With that in mind, one of the book clubs that I belong to decided to read it this month.

First person narrator, Thomas Bennett, begins,"This is supposed to be the best night of my life." But for Thomas it isn't the best night of his life. He has a secret. Tomorrow he is supposed to be reporting to a recruiter
Jun 09, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My name is Thomas. But you you probably know me as Jake’s brother, the soldier hero who is getting a bridge named after him. Yes, he is doing fine. Yes, my dad went to the war as well. He went to Iraq. Yeah, I know how to shoot a gun since I am, like, seven years old. It’s in out blood. The Bennets go to war and protect the country for you. What did you say? If I am ready to be shipped tomorrow? Hum, yeah, I guess.
It is Thomas’ graduation day. He has one night to decide if he will go to the army
Chasity Lasko
Dec 09, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“These are the final hours. And nothing-not graduation, or Jake, or even a natural disaster-can stop me from getting in my truck and disappearing once the sun comes up. No answers, no hesitation-just gone.”- Thomas
Meet Me Here by Bryan Bliss is a novel of a boy struggling with a choice that he has to make. As he battles with reality his decision may not be what everyone expects or live up to his father’s expectations.
Thomas Bennett has always known what he wanted to do with his life. Until rece
Grace (The Reading Raindoe)
“Last night to go out and be free” stories are overdone in YA books, as far as I’m concerned. Between “last night we’ll all be together before college starts” stories and “last night before I ship out” stories, I’m done. I would include road trip stories in there, too. That’s beside the point. I’m done with them. This story felt like it could be solved with a bit of communication and maybe some therapy.

The book had too many plot lines, it was all over the place. And yet, the story didn’t really
Jun 08, 2017 rated it it was ok
This book had good intentions, but fell very flat. It's a quick read and I read it in two sittings, but I struggled to enjoy it. The characters were all blah and I never felt any sort of connection with them, nor did they have any chemistry with each other. The only characters I liked were the redneck secondary characters because at least they were feisty and animated. There are hardly any descriptions of anything so I have no idea what any of the characters looked like or what the town looked l ...more
Dec 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Where do I even begin on this book?!?!?! It. Is. Absolutely. Amazing. I recommend this book for anywho who wants to read about a boy and his life choices on the army, his brother and even a girl. This book is so good that you can read it all in one sitting. It has emotionally factors, dialogue and tens of millions of things that make you want to sink your spectacles in (It's that good.) I give the author of this books Bryan Bliss probs he is an amazing writer that has words and story to pull you ...more
Mar 18, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Actual rating: 3.5 stars

The writing in this book was beautiful, and Thomas felt like an actual, breathing person throughout the entire book. I also loved the way the author worked his and Mallory’s relationship.

However, I didn’t like that we knew next to nothing about Mallory by the end of the book, despite the fact that she was there for 70% of it.

The last quarter of the book also felt very rushed and sudden, everything suddenly happening at twice the speed that it was before.

Still, I left the
May 25, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars

Some people love the idea of a whole book taking place in one night, and some people hate it. I tend to enjoy it. I don't think this book really broke any new ground, and it didn't just wow me. The thing I *did* love about it though was that the main character was battling with his decision about going into the military. I feel like every YA book that deals with post-graduation plans only ever mentions college, so it was nice to have one that didn't even mention college at all.
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Bryan Bliss is the author of No Parking at the End Times, Meet Me Here, and We’ll Fly Away, which was longlisted for the 2018 National Book Award. He lives in Saint Paul, MN with his family.

You can visit him online at and on Facebook and Twitter.

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“I want to believe that we make our own plans. I want to believe that we are the ones in control of our lives.” 2 likes
“I have to believe in whatever magic brings us down twisted roads, leading us to places we never expected. Leading us back to the place we should've been all along.” 2 likes
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