Author: Deb Caletti
Genre: YA Contemporary
Source: Purchased (Paperback)
Clara’s relationship with Christian is intense from the start, and like nothing she’s ever experienced before. But what starts as devotion quickly becomes obsession, and it’s almost too late before Clara realizes how far gone Christian is and what he’s willing to do to make her stay.
Now Clara has left the city and Christian behind. No one back home has any idea where she is, but she still struggles to shake off her fear. She knows Christian won’t let her go that easily, and that no matter how far she runs, it may not be far enough….
My habit of buying books based pretty much on nothing except maybe an author’s name and what people are saying really paid off this time. Reading the front cover on this one, I thought I would be in for a perfect YA contemporary like Sarah Dessen (since it says it would be PERFECT for fan’s of Dessen), but this was something completely different. I didn’t exactly read the back cover before cracking it open so I was in no way prepared for what was to come.
And what happened?
Well, that would be me starting the book at 9pm one night, FORCING myself to go to sleep at midnight, and then waking up at 5:30 to finish the story. It was THAT good. Actually, the whole thing was pretty intense, and I think that’s what Caletti was going for. The story started off like any story, but we’re hearing from Clara’s present and her past in alternating chapters. I was a little confused by this at first, but by the fourth chapter I caught onto what was happening. It’s interesting because both stories start off so innocently and then build, build, build … much to the point where I just couldn’t fathom putting the book down.
The story deals with a pretty intense relationship — an obsessive relationship. When I started to read it, it was pretty much like other YA relationships I had read about in the past. Heck, I’ve probably lived the beginnings of some of those relationships in my youth! But then it starts to get crazy intense when Clara’s boyfriend starts showing obsessive and possessive characteristics. It was really scary in some sections. The hard thing, too, was reading about Clara and her reactions to some of the things that Christian did. She talks about her past, but points out certain things (like her stupidity) in footnotes which worked well with the story.
There were times where I was ready to cry and other times I was shaking just from reading. It was THAT good. Not only did I feel like this type of relationship was played out perfectly, but the characters were perfect, too. Clara was a normal teen and now she’s definitely a bit more wary, a bit more cautious. And her dad! Oh my gosh, I loved Clara’s dad. It was nice to have a dad in a book who just seemed normal. I mean, the man swore like a pirate and treated his kid like an equal. It was a very unique kind of relationship. And Christian. Wow. There are no words for how I felt about Christian. He TERRIFIED me.
I can’t say enough good things about this story. It had me hooked instantly and once I finished I tried to think of other people who would really enjoy it. I also really want to try out more of Caletti’s writing. If her other books are anything like this one, I can’t wait to read them!