Author: Morgan Matson
Published: May 6th, 2014
Genre: Cutesy contemporary, YA contemporary
It was Sloane who yanked Emily out of her shell and made life 100% interesting. But right before what should have been the most epic summer, Sloane just... disappears.. All she leaves behind is a to-do list.
On it, thirteen Sloane-inspired tasks that Emily would normally never try. But what if they could bring her best friend back?
Apple picking at night? Okay, easy enough.
Dance until dawn?Sure. Why not?
Kiss a stranger? Um...
Emily now has this unexpected summer, and the help of Frank Porter (totally unecptected), to check things off Sloane's list. Who knows what she'll find?
Go skinny-dipping? Wait... what?
Emily is reserved and timid. Sloane is exciting and the life of every party. Without Sloane, Emily is nothing. And it's not until Sloane disappears leaving Emily alone with nothing but a list and a hanging question: Why did Sloane leave this list? Emily's only hope is that completing this list will lead her back to her best friend. And that's basically all I'm going to reveal for the non-spoiler part of this review!
** Spoiler-filled review beyond this point**
The character development of the main character Emily was phenomenal. I have read many cases in which the shy character becomes a blossoming and independent character, but none quite like this. Emily ended up being this confident and lively character, no longer dull and pretty much boring. She was pretty much confident enough to kiss a stranger or to go skinny dipping. It just showed how much potential her personality had without Sloane.
The ending was... satisfying. And I'm not trying to be sarcastic in any way!! I really loved the ending. No cliffhangers, no surprises. The romance, however, was kind of something crazy for me. In the beginning of the story she meets Frank Porter, the (future) valedictorian of her school and, not to mention, priceless hottie. She also meets his best friend Collins and a girl named Dawn. The four become the bestest of friends, only to be split by some predicament. And that brings us into the romance part of this YA contemporary because you can't have a cutesy contemporary without a sparkling romance!
Emily and Frank. Frank and Emily. I totally ship the new shy girl and smart boy kind of thing going on in here. Now the sizzling realization of love took quite a while, but the book wasn't very generous in getting there either. As Frank helps Emily complete her list of... strange things... he sees the true Emily (fun and beautiful) and evidently falls in love with her at the same time. But a YA contemporary wouldn't be a YA contemporary without some type of love triangle as well. But apparently Frank already has a girlfriend in Princeton for the summer. So things get a little interesting there... And now, it's not my job to spoil it for you guys because I know a lot of you have been looking forward to reading this book.
I thought the plot was AMAAAMZEEBEANS!!! I can't even begin to comprehend how Morgan Matson came up with such compelling storylines. But I'm guessing she just had this well-planned summer in her head while writing the sketches for this story. I'm pretty sure there are more Morgan Matson books in my future... just wait and see!
All I can really sum up for this book was that it was a perfect summer read, and I don't know why I didn't start it earlier. The plot will have you gripped till the end. And let's not forget that I finished this 449 page book in ONE day. While, on the other hand, it took me quite a while to finish The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black, a 419 page book. And I was surprised by how much I liked this book since YA contemporaries lately haven't had me in the shock and awe moment. Without a doubt, this book deserves the highest of ratings.