Release Date: 22 November 2011
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
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Saving June was a heart-wrenching, beautiful read. Once I started reading, I was so drawn into the story that I couldn't put the book down. Trust me--I was SO wishing that I hadn't volunteered to work on Black Friday because I could have been reading this instead!
When the story opens, June is dead and her younger sister, Harper, is dealing with the aftermath--the funeral and wake, the pitying glances, the endless casseroles, and the unwanted affectionate embraces of old women wearing too much perfume. Harper was always very different from her sister, but now she is forced to see the world around her differently. Did she really know her sister?
I connected with Harper early on in this book. She's a unique person who's never been afraid to stand up for herself and do her own thing, but at her deepest points, she has more in common with each and every one of us than she ever imagined. She is so heartbroken over her sister's death that my heart broke right alongside hers. I thought that her grieving process was handled immensely well, including her "wild" idea to drive June's ashes across the country to scatter them in California. It seemed like such a fitting tribute that coincided with what we knew of June and what we're learning about Harper.
Jake is a character who pops into Harper's life out of nowhere, and I felt from the first moment that I "met" him that he was going to be significant. Throughout the story I loved getting to see Harper and Jake interact and get to know each other and themselves in the process. Jake is so not the person I expected him to be from initial interactions and I seriously grew to like him a lot. The only thing that irked me just a little were his mood swings. I mean, this boy SERIOUSLY suffers from male PMS. His bickering with Harper would kind of pop up out of nowhere and make me want to smack the boy! But don't worry, he more than makes up for it later (despite a
My very minor gripe aside, this book was phenomenal. Ms. Harrington has taken a story of teenage grief and turned it into a beautiful story. I think fans of contemporary YA fiction will fall deeply, madly in love with this story.