Hey all, Dani here.
I read this last month, but I really wanted to write up a proper review for it, mostly because I have loved every single book I have read from Brigid Kemmerer. Seriously, I adored her Elemental series. This one is a bit different because there are no abilities or anything; this one is straight up contemporary. That doesn’t lessen the enjoyment I found in reading it though.
Okay, well let’s just jump into this, shall we?
Juliet Young always writes letters to her mother, a world-traveling photojournalist. Even after her mother’s death, she leaves letters at her grave. It’s the only way Juliet can cope.
Declan Murphy isn’t the sort of guy you want to cross. In the midst of his court-ordered community service at the local cemetery, he’s trying to escape the demons of his past.
When Declan reads a haunting letter left beside a grave, he can’t resist writing back. Soon, he’s opening up to a perfect stranger, and their connection is immediate. But neither Declan nor Juliet knows that they’re not actually strangers. When life at school interferes with their secret life of letters, sparks will fly as Juliet and Declan discover truths that might tear them apart.
Rating: 5 stars
This book was so good. I love Brigid Kemmerer’s writing and I have been looking forward to this newest release because the concept sounded intriguing. It is a story of two teens connecting while sharing anonymous letters with each other. This story deals with grief, guilt, friendship, and secrets, and I was blown away by the characters and their tales.
I was actually pleased and surprised that it jumped into the letter exchange so quickly. But then it took me a little while to completely adjust to the story format, because almost after every letter (or later e-mail) sent, the perspective changes to the other person. So yes, this is a dual POV story.
The home lives of both of these characters are so different and yet they both share enough similarities that Juliet and Declan can connect through these anonymous exchanges. What is amusing is that basically right after this letter exchange begins, Juliet and Declan start randomly running into each other at school. The difference in their interactions in person from their interactions via the written word is quite vast, but nevertheless enjoyable.
When you start to read this, it is obvious that at some point one or both of them will figure out who their anonymous pen pal is, but when that revelation happens there are also so many other revelations happening that it becomes this whirlwind of details and secrets and lies. I don’t want to spoil anything so I won’t say more on the topic, but the nearer we got to the ending the more invested I was in the story. I needed answers and I wasn’t willing to put the book down until I got them.
And, I don’t know, maybe there is room for a sequel or a companion novel. I think I’d like to know more about Declan’s friend Rev.
Basically I really enjoyed this book and I’m looking forward to seeing what Brigid Kemmerer will come up with next.