Heartbreaking yet love affirming. The power of a book.
“Seventeen year old Jonah Daniels has lived in Verona Cove, California, his whole life, and only one thing has ever changed: his father used to be alive, and now he’s not. Now Jonah must numbly take care of his family as they reel from their tragedy. Cue next change: Vivi Alexander, new girl in town. Vivi is in love with life. A gorgeous and unfiltered hurricane of thoughts and feelings. She seems like she’s from another planet as she transforms Jonah’s family and changes his life. But there are always consequences when worlds collide”
When I started reading this book I knew it was going to destroy me. I could just sense it. I knew it was going to make me cry. But in a good way. A heart-wretchingly, deeply loving way. My friend Rachel kept telling me to read it. But she also warned me that it would make me cry. I can deal with crying. (I read Me Before You and that absolutely killed me. For about a week. Even now I can’t think about it and not be sad. So I can deal with tears). But I don’t think I was prepared for this book. It looks so unassuming.
Plot: So the basic plot is there’s Jonah and there’s Vivi. They’re teenagers who meet and the story is all about how they change each other’s lives. How unashamedly honest they can be with each other, yet how very secretive they are. How open, yet closed, they are with each other. How bright her personality seems to be compared to his very reserved and staunch shell. How messy his life seems to be compared to her seemingly very well put together life. His big, complicated family life compared to her very tiny family. This story deals with grief, loss, mental health issues and it does it with such a grace and such a brilliance that it’s not shouted at from the rooftops, it’s just there. Spoken about. No judgement. No pretence. Real. I loved the story. I’m a sucker for a love story. Even more so for a love story that has some serious depth. That’s what you get with this book… a love story with heart, with personality, with dimensions. It is done so brilliantly.
Characters: I loved them. So so so much. I genuinely don’t think I disliked any characters. Some played a much smaller part in the world of the story than others. But they’re all so wonderfully knitted together. They all work so well together and I can’t imagine the book without each and every one of them. Vivi – a bubbly, vivacious, unashamedly boisterous main character who seems so very well put together, but who has, like every other person in the world, a story. Her story, her love for life and her charm is what will make you fall for her. Jonah – reliable, trustworthy, amazingly adorable big brother Jonah. I fell for him. The relationship he has with his little sister Leah instantly made me fall for him. And he only grew on me. I want myself a Jonah. His family are incredible. You’ll fall for them all, even his seemingly detached sister. There are so many characters in this book that I could talk about, but I don’t want to spoil it. Just know this, I loved each of them. They all, in their own way and shape, played some important role in the book.
Cover: LOOK AT IT. It’s one of those books you want to pick up because you want to read it. It’s BEAUTIFUL.
I will conclude with this: If you want a book that is going to make you fall in love then read this. I adored it. It was an easy read, but I fell in love with it. I didn’t want to put it down. I am gutted it is over. I don’t think I could’ve taken any more though. A lady on the bus actually asked me if I was OK because I was crying so much. Good work Emery Lord.
Have any of you read this? What did you think? Catch me on twitter for a chat (@eenalol) or comment in the box below! I would love to read other books like this!