Review: Me Since You by Laura Wiess

Book Title: Me Since You
Author: Laura Wiess
Release Date: February 18th, 2014
Publisher: MTV Books
Genre: YA/Contemporary
Standalone
Book Link: Goodreads
Pre-Order Link: AmazonBarnes & Noble
Synopsis from Goodreads:
“Laura Wiess’s masterful prose kept me turning the pages. This is the first book in a very long time that made me say, ‘Wish I’d written this’” (Ellen Hopkins, author of Crank, on Such a Pretty Girl).

Sixteen-year-old Rowan is still reeling from her father’s suicide four months ago, after he failed to stop a man from leaping off an overpass to his death. The only witness is Eli, a teenaged boy wrapped deep in mourning for his own father, killed in action in Afghanistan. When Rowan and Eli meet, they recognize kindred spirits, and begin to navigate grief and its aftermath together.

Rowan can’t understand how her father could choose to leave her, and acts out, pushing away friends and taking risks with her safety. Rowan’s mother, wracked with her own guilt and sorrow over failing to save her husband, stops going to work and collects stray cats for comfort. Grief, fractured and unpredictable, rules their lives now. Rowan is lost—and sinking. But Eli represents a lifeline for Rowan, and as they struggle to make sense of what’s gone and what is left behind, they begin to fall in love. Me Since You is Laura Wiess at her finest—a beautiful, gripping and painfully honest examination of adolescence.

Disclaimer: I received this e-ARC from Edelweiss in exchange for my honest opinion.

Review:
This one is going to be a hard one to review for several reasons.When it was really good, it was really good and I cried so hard I nearly puked. But when there was a lull, which was a lot of the time, it was disappointing to me. I think a lot if not all of the problem I had was that I couldn’t really relate to Rowan.She had an intact family where her parents clearly loved each other. I couldn’t relate to that.

Yet when her father commits suicide, I cry buckets. I cry for Rowan because it’s just not fair that a father who loved his family that much, could be in so much pain where the only thing he could do to deal with it, was end his life. I cried because I remembered being in a similar position 2 years ago when a good friend of mine ended her life. 

This one was different though. With Rowan it was her beloved father. The grief was palpable, but yet I felt disconnected from it. Trying to connect with either Rowan or her mother was impossible because I couldn’t understand why they were so sad. I blame that totally on my life experiences though.I totally understand why this entire book was a complete sobfest for others.

I absolutely adored Eli though. I know normally I say that relationships like this are formed out of convenience, but not this time. It helped that Rowan and Eli were already friends before Rowan’s dad killed himself.I love watching a friendship turn into something more. It’s always been a big positive for me to see two people start off as friends first before they become romantically involved.

Rowan needs Eli, especially once she realizes that her onetime best friend, Nadia has essentially deserted her. That absolutely infuriated me. Nadia expects Rowan to be okay only a month after the death? Nadia’s job is to love and support Rowan as she navigates this journey called grief, and yet she doesn’t. She gets mad at Rowan for “not being over it already” Really she wants Rowan to “get over” the death of her father in a month? Nadia turned out to be a class A bitch.

I really wanted to love this book, but I think the fact that I couldn’t connect with the characters at all was my main problem. Structurally the book was great and the feels were definitely there.The crying I did was really the only time I connected with the characters.The emotional parts were wonderfully written and Eli was easily my favorite character. Aside from that, I didn’t hate this book, but I just didn’t love it either. That’s why I have to give it 3 stars.

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