Genre: YA, Contemporary
Source: ARC Twitter Giveaway by @hellochelly
“Sometimes it was hard to breathe, knowing how small my world could be.”
-Heather Demetrios, I’ll Meet You There
Publication Date: Feb. 3, 2015
If seventeen-year-old Skylar Evans were a typical Creek View girl, her future would involve a double-wide trailer, a baby on her hip, and the graveyard shift at Taco Bell. But after graduation, the only thing standing between straightedge Skylar and art school are three minimum-wage months of summer. Skylar can taste the freedom—that is, until her mother loses her job and everything starts coming apart. Torn between her dreams and the people she loves, Skylar realizes everything she’s ever worked for is on the line.
Nineteen-year-old Josh Mitchell had a different ticket out of Creek View: the Marines. But after his leg is blown off in Afghanistan, he returns home, a shell of the cocksure boy he used to be. What brings Skylar and Josh together is working at the Paradise—a quirky motel off California’s dusty Highway 99. Despite their differences, their shared isolation turns into an unexpected friendship and soon, something deeper.
This book was not only beautiful, raw and emotional, but it was also deep, realistic and relevant to our current society and problems faced by many people.
After finishing the book I read the Author’s Notes and Acknowledgements and it was by far the best part of the book and that is saying a lot because I was in love with the book. Demetrios explains how the military has played a role in her life and impacted her upbringing and overall life. She is so passionate about the topic and before even reading the acknowledgements it comes across so strongly, but it is amazing to see her involvement and the support to the Wounded Warrior cause. I think it is very important for more people to learn about and understand the struggles that the soliders fighting in the war face. They give their lives to protect our country and live the rest of their lives with the loss of fellow soliders, the actions they carried out and the trauma/scars that they return to the US with. Demetrios handle the topic beautifully and showcases the affects of war in a way that everyone can understand and gain knowledge from.
I absolutely loved the writing and way that Demetrios told this moving story of self discovery, love and overcoming what life throws at you. The story covered so many issues and I enjoyed how Demetrios handled all of them. The dual point of view was fantastic and fit the story so well. With the short blurbs from Josh in his thoughts to Nick gave you the insight into what he was dealing with and just how hard being back and the struggle of the loss of his leg was so emotional.
I found the character dynamics to really round out the story. There were characters fitting all types from the alcoholic, jocky asshole, funny best friend, caring mother type, the girl from the trailer park, the teen mom etc. I could relate a lot to Skylar and really understand what she was going through. She was strong, caring and had some wonderful self-discovery and character development. Also I love how she is really into art. Skylar’s banter with the other characters especially Josh was so great. I love the witty back and forth, the teasing and arguments. The characters all had struggles and problems and it made the story more realistic. There wasn’t the perfect relationship but the give and take and work that had to go into figuring it all out. Josh was a fantastic complex character. You really see how much he is struggling and the affects taking their toll on him from the war and its aftermath. I just can’t say it enough and I am probably repeating myself too much. I just am really trying to convey how excellent this book is.
Overall this was an absolutely fantastic book that shocked and surprised me. It left me in tears and really appreciating the men and women who serve in the military as well as have so much appreciation for the passion the author put into telling Skylar and Josh’s story.This story packs such a punch, hitting on a little bit of everything. It is a little dark and depressing at times, but it shows how you can find the light in the dark and make it something wonderful. I highly recommend this to everyone, especially those who have family in the military or had their life affected by it in some way. Or you just want a beautiful and movie love story!