Format: Hardcover (ARC)
My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Summary (from Goodreads): Seventeen-year-old Holly Mullen has felt lost and lonely ever since her boyfriend, Rob, died in a tragic accident. The fact that she has to spend most of her free time caring for her little sister and Alzheimer’s-stricken grandfather doesn’t help. But Holly has no idea that as she goes about her days, Rob’s ghost is watching over her. He isn’t happy when he sees his best friend, Jason, reach out to help Holly with her grandfather—but as a ghost, he can do nothing to stop it. Is his best friend really falling for his girlfriend?
As Holly wonders whether to open her heart to Jason, the past comes back to haunt her. Her grandfather claims to be communicating with the ghost of Rob. Could the messages he has for Holly be real? And if so, how can the loved ones Rob left behind help his tortured soul make it to the other side?
Told from the perspectives of Holly, Jason, and Rob,Wherever You Go is is a poignant story about making peace with the past, opening your heart to love, and finding the courage to move forward into the light.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this novel in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.
My Summary: Holly's life is not what you'd call ideal - her mother works two jobs, and Holly is forced to pick up the slack at home by cooking, cleaning, and taking care of her little sister. Add to that the fact that her boyfriend Rob just died, and it's easy to see why Holly isn't very happy when her mother decides that Holly's grandfather - who suffers from Alzheimer's - is coming to live with them in their cramped apartment.
Soon Holly begins to feel overwhelmed by all her responsibilities at home. Things only get worse when her grandfather claims to be communicating with the Rob, and when Rob's friend Jason begins spending more time with Holly. When Jason reveals that he wants to get to know her better, Holly is torn between this chance to move on and her resonating feelings for Rob.
My Thoughts: This novel was both touching and heartbreaking. I immediately related to Holly, and I felt like she didn't deserve all the heartache in her life even though she was strong and able to push through all the tragedies and be happy. This novel begs the question: how long does it take to move on after the death of someone we loved? Can we ever truly love someone the same way that we loved them?
This book was an emotional roller-coaster ride. It made me cry like a baby at points and smile in others. I loved the character of Jason, and that he was always there for Holly - even when she didn't know it. I also really liked the character of Aldo (Holly's grandfather). He added that little bit of humour (not in a bad way) that was needed in the story.
The writing was well done, although the point-of-view changes confused me a little in the beginning. Other than there was nothing I disliked about the book!
Final Thoughts: I recommend this to anyone who enjoys more thoughtful YA - contemporary literature especially. I think you'll definitely enjoy this novel if you liked If I Stay by Gayle Forman. Check it out if you're in the mood for a good cry!