***A special thank you to Goodreads Giveaway, Stefan Merrill Block and Flatiron Books for the ARC and allowing me the opportunity to write an honest r***A special thank you to Goodreads Giveaway, Stefan Merrill Block and Flatiron Books for the ARC and allowing me the opportunity to write an honest review.***
What an extraordinary, heartfelt novel. I honestly don't even know where to begin with this. When I began Oliver Loving, I did not expect for it to make me feel the way it did. As we all know, after the first couple of chapters we pretty much have an idea on whether we are gripped or not; this novel gripped its hold on me in the first chapter.
A beautiful story of a tragic event happening to a young boy, mostly lost in his own, sheltered world, who happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. We're introduced into the lives of his loved ones and the places so familiar to him. We learn the affects this tragedy has on each of these people, their coping mechanisms, their reasons and how they're perceived from the outside. Oliver's story is told in a way that is convincing enough to make you believe it is being written from experience. A story so real, you can't help but be moved and sometimes even empathize with the characters, bad decisions and all. The author has a way of submitting you right there with them in their grief, justifying any immoral actions, and convincing you that tragedies are somehow a pass to denial, self-pity and isolation. You can't help but feel what these characters are feeling and getting caught up in the emotional roller coaster right along with them. Not only is the novel based on tragedy but also on unrequited love which is why I believe I hold it so dear to me. I am all too familiar with unrequited love and so the sadness, loss and hope emitted from the character took me back to my own personal experience with it. I understood and the pain of loss put into such beautiful words made me tear up a time or two.
This novel is so richly written, so descriptive in emotions, thoughts and comparisons, just beautiful. I'm really having a hard time finding the words to describe this because I feel like there just aren't any to bring it justice. There were a few times during my reading where my heart literally tightened because of either the beauty of the words, the sorrow or the uncanny relation I had with any of the characters at that moment.
I can't say enough good things about this and this will, without a doubt, be the first novel out of my mouth any time someone asks me for suggestions on what to read next. I feel so very honored to have been able to receive this beautiful piece before its release and to have the opportunity to review it. I would like to end this novel with two of my favorite excerpts from the book that I had to pause, grab a sticker and mark because they are something I would love to reflect on forever:
"The tragedy of love, you had learned from ten years spent looking up at your mother, is that it is only possible to love perfectly a person who is lost to you; only a lost person, lodged in a place before the narrow, clumsy gates of language, could ever understand you perfectly."
"Survival was not a story you could tell. Survival was the telling, and that was the burden and the gift of living."...more
I tried to get into this, I really did. I feel like this was hard for me because it seemed to just be all over the place, focusing on points that wereI tried to get into this, I really did. I feel like this was hard for me because it seemed to just be all over the place, focusing on points that weren't relevant to the overall idea. Or maybe it could just be that this isn't something I'd pick off of a shelf on my own (assigned reading for my government class). Honestly, I couldn't even go into detail for you to elaborate my points; I'm not sure how I was able to write my paper on it! ...more
I was just assigned this book for my government class. Such a hard read but very informative. A must , especially for those that this may hit even jusI was just assigned this book for my government class. Such a hard read but very informative. A must , especially for those that this may hit even just a bit close to home....more