He was tall, at least six feet, with dirty blond hair that hung over his eyes. His T-shirt read Nietzsche Is My Homeboy.
So, that was Matt. Who Julie Seagle likes. A lot. But there is also Finn. Who she flat out loves.
Complicated? Awkward? Completely.
But really, how was this freshly-minted Boston transplant and newbie college freshman supposed to know that she would end up living with the family of an old friend of her mother’s? This was all supposed to be temporary. Julie wasn’t supposed to be important to the Watkins family, or to fall in love with one of the brothers. Especially the one she’s never quite met. But what does that really matter? Finn gets her, like no one ever has before. They have connection.
But here’s the thing about love, in all its twisty, bumpy permutations—it always throws you a few curves. And no one ever escapes unscathed.
I should start by saying that YA is not my cup of tea, but I picked up this book at my friend’s recommendation. The first part was a bit slow for my liking, but I’m glad I didn’t give up.
Julie Seagle left Ohio to go to college in Boston. Her mother did the mistake of renting an apartment for her via Craigslist. Well that was a big one and Julie found herself alone with no place to stay. Luckily Erin, her mom’s college roommate was kind enough to offer her accommodation. That’s how Julie gets to meet the Watkins’: on one side, Matt a very smart almost geeky but handsome college boy, Finn the hot adventurous traveler and Celeste the weird 13 years old, and on the other side, Erin and Roger, the parents who are never around. Right from the beginning, Julie can tell that this family is troubled and dysfunctional.
The strangest thing seems to be Celeste carrying around a life-size cut-out of her older brother Finn (she calls it Flat Finn). Julie tries really hard to help her get out of her shell and be a normal teenager. In trying to understand her better and suspecting that this family has gone through a life changing event, Julie asks everyone for details, including Finn which she connects via Facebook. Their virtual relationship grows really fast.
Finn is funny, vivacious, romantic and always there for her. She eventually confesses to her best friend that she’s in love with somebody she’s never met or even talked on the phone. She feels like she’s known him forever.
I’ve heard of this kind of romance before, and I wonder, could it be real? Can a virtual relationship exist and grow into a real life one?
Their messages and email exchanges were the highlight of this book.
“Finn is God: I gotcha. I like that one better too. Ready? Here we go…
So we’ve pulled the chute, and we’re drifting, riding the sky. It’s just you and me. You can hear me now that we’re falling like this, remember? I tell you that I don’t want this to end. I don’t want to land and reach the real world, because I like our world up here better.
Finn is God: I tell you that I like being this close to you and how you feel against me. But now even I’m hesitant to jump. I’m afraid that when we hit the ground, this will be over. We’ll land and this feeling between us will vanish. That you won’t feel it any longer. I can’t stand that thought.
Julie’s hands shook as she wrote.
Julie Seagle: I’ll still feel it.”
Her relationship with Matt, the geeky brother is one of friendship, until one night when everything changes. Can’t say more without revealing the big secret, which I must say, left me awestruck. I’m not sure why, but for once I didn’t suspect anything. Julie’s patience and dedication in “saving” Celeste and her family is admirable. I loved the ending, very emotional and in a way liberating.
The author created a great story for young adults, very romantic, pure, and sweet with the perfect twist.
4 stars from me!
Thanks for reading,