I know I am late to the game with this book but better late than never, right? I finally gave this a chance and here is my main takeaway: this is a very heavy book and holy crap it is a long story. It was almost offensively long. I bet if you cut 200 pages out it would have been just as good. I cannot figure out why a contemporary book needed to be nearly 500 pages. I will try like the dickens to not beat that topic into the ground but it is very hard to ignore.
Matson is one of my all time favorite authors and I will forever read whatever she publishes. That being said, this probably will not one of her stories that I highly recommend to others or reread. I liked the characters but wasn’t in love with them. They were all forgettable, flat, and boring. The plot was heavy and hard to get through at times. The The one thing that was over the top amazing was the world building. The entire story was set in a beautiful remote forest/summer camp setting. I often felt as if I was in the story along with the characters. That being said, it was the most detailed and long winded part of the story. The trees were described in extensive detail to the point it took away from the main point of the story.
There probably was no real way to have a developed character arc as the MC was simply dealing with the fact that her dad was dying of cancer and this was their last summer together. Let’s be honest, there was only so much an author could do with that. I lost a parent to cancer so I know how tough it is in real life so I ended up keeping an arm’s length from this story. I’m not say Matson did a bad job of portraying a daughter losing her parent, I’m saying there is a time and place for that type of story and it might not have been with a romance wrapped around it. That is what made the story so confusing – was I supposed to focus on the romance or the parent? Between you and me, the two topics should not have been mixed.
I will not ever be upset that I read this one but as I mentioned I probably won’t pick it back up. There were huge chunks that went on for far too long. I stand by my comment that about 200 pages could have (should have?) been cut. They were slow, pointless, and downright boring. I will still read everything Matson writes and I’m glad I can finally mark this off of my long TBR list.