Saturday, January 18, 2014

Meet Me at the River by Nina de Gramont Review

"We can’t choose who we love…but can we choose to let go?

Stepsiblings Tressa and Luke have been close since they were little…and when they become teenagers, they slip from being best friends to being something more. Their relationship makes everyone around them uncomfortable, but they can’t—won’t—deny their connection. Nothing can keep them apart.

Not even death. Luke is killed in a horrible, tragic accident, and Tressa is suddenly and desperately alone. Unable to outrun the waves of grief and guilt and longing, she is haunted by thoughts of suicide. And then she is haunted by Luke himself.

He visits only at night. But when he’s with her, it’s almost like the accident never happened. Oh, there are reminders, from the way she can only feel him when he touches the scars on her wrist, to how she can’t seem to tell him about life since he’s been gone. As long as they’re together, though, the rest…it fades away.

But during the day it is Tressa who can’t grasp hold of the people around her. The same people who never wanted her and Luke together in the first place are determined to help her move on. Determined to help her heal. They just don’t understand—one misstep, one inch forward, could leave Luke behind forever.

Nina de Gramont, author of Gossip of the Starlings and Every Little Thing in the World, writes of love that is beautiful and poetic, forbidden and radical—and utterly irresistible."

Meet Me at the River is perfectly cryable. (Note: cryable is not a word. Please don't use it in your college essays or writings or anything like that). It's about a story of a ghost, Luke, and a girl who can't let go of him, Tressa. It totally reminds me of the movie...Ahhh! There's too many movies like this book. Too many to remember. 

If you break the book down, Meet Me at the River is pretty much about moving on with life, rather than stay behind in the past. That's the biggest theme in this book, although another theme: Don't be stupid. Just kidding, that's not the theme. It's this: You can't control what happened in the past, but you can stick around for the future. How's that? Yeah, it's pretty much the same thing as moving on with life. I can't think of any other themes than that and "Fight your demons." 

I love it. Meet Me at the River is totally Thirteen Reasons Why, without the tapes and blackmail. It's a ghost story, incorporated into YA fantasy and YA freaky paranormal stuff. Meet Me at the River is a story of becoming stronger and realizing that there's more to life. Yes, it's beautiful, forbidden, and radical, and utterly irresistible. But I'm not sure about poetic. might be something I skimmed over. 

The plot of Meet Me at the River is kind of shaky in the beginning. A soft wind from the West can easily push the book over. It's on a broken bridge. My entire mind was thinking about how easily I can lose myself and become confused in the beginning. It gets stronger and stronger towards the end, which is perfect. Considering the fact that Tressa is weaker in the beginning and stronger towards the end, I think it's quite perfect for the plot to be confusing and strange. But it still doesn't explains Luke's odd thoughts in the beginning. 

Tressa takes the center of the stage despite sharing POVs with Luke. Tressa is a dynamic character, changing from a negative girl to a hopeful one. Tressa is the one on the road to getting better, trying to overcome her doubts and fears. She makes slow progress, but slowly becomes better and better, with the help of H.J. No thanks to Luke, for the most parts. Luke, on the other hand, eventually follows the theme, like Tressa after Tressa was the one to make the first move. I guess he really loves her, even though everyone was trying to tear them apart. 

The ending of Meet Me at the River was sweet. It's bittersweet, but remains hopeful and strong. It's a solid ending for a stand-alone novel. 

Rating: Four out of Five

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