(May have minor spoilers, so beware!)
I think it’s safe to say that I’m officially a Morgan Matson fan girl.
I flew through this book. It was cute and fun. I loved the characters in this book and really enjoyed the development of them over the course of the summer.
I felt a big connection with Emily, because I had my very own Sloane when I was in high school. Granted, she never mailed me a list of things to do or left town without saying goodbye, but I was still her shadow. It made me really happy to watch Emily grow as a her own person and not as just someone’s friend. She finally started to make her own friends, she did things she never in a million years expected herself to do, and she was happier because of it.
Now, I don’t think that Sloane and Emily’s relationship was toxic, nor do I think Sloane made Emily her shadow on purpose. Once we got to understand what Sloane’s reason for disappearing was, it all made sense. It wasn’t the best reason, but it was realistic, in my opinion.
Frank was a great character to follow. According to Emily, Frank was labelled as the “perfect” guy in high school– perfect grades, girlfriend, parents, reputation. If he wasn’t running for Class President, he was saving tree frogs. Frank’s character had really great development over the course of the novel. I loved that he was able to be himself and honest around Emily, instead of what he was “supposed” to be like. Completely random, but I kept picturing Percy Weasley as Frank while reading this. I have NO clue why. He isn’t one bit like Percy. It’s strange.
Dawn and Collins were fun side characters! One of the only issues I had with this book was the fact that Emily didn’t solve things over with Dawn at the end. I felt like what happened needed to have some sort of conversation to have closure, but we never got it. It really sucks because I really liked Dawn and Emily’s friendship.
As for the parents, it was a running theme in this book for the character’s parents to not care where they were, what they were doing, what time they got home, etc. Mainly because their parents were never home or they were focused on something else and didn’t give a second look to their kids. I really hate this trope. It’s not realistic for teenager’s to just have mansions to themselves constantly. Admittedly, it helped with the story line of the book, but it still drove me a bit mad.
Overall, I really, really, really loved this book. If you love coming of age stories with cute (non insta-love) romances, then I definitely recommend checking this book out.