Listened: July 2016
Emmy and Oliver were going to be best friends forever, or maybe even more, before their futures were ripped apart. In Emmy’s soul, despite the space and time between them, their connection has never been severed. But is their story still written in the stars? Or are their hearts like the pieces of two different puzzles—impossible to fit together?
Emmy just wants to be in charge of her own life. . . . She wants to stay out late, surf her favorite beach—go anywhere without her parents’ relentless worrying. But Emmy’s parents can’t seem to let her grow up—not since the day Oliver disappeared.
Oliver needs a moment to figure out his heart. . . . He’d thought, all these years, that his dad was the good guy. He never knew that it was his father who had kidnapped him and kept him on the run. Discovering it, and finding himself returned to his old hometown, all at once, has his heart racing, and his thoughts swirling.
Readers who love Sarah Dessen will devour these pages with hearts in throats as Emmy and Oliver struggle to face the messy, confusing consequences of Oliver’s father’s crime. Full of romance, coming-of-age emotion, and heartache, these two equally compelling characters create an unforgettable story.
When I went into reading Emmy & Oliver, I never really got what I was expecting. I thought it might just be a simple, fun love story between two teenagers, but it really wasn’t – it was a lot more complicated than that.
When I realized that the story was about young Oliver, who disappeared when he was a young child, my ears perked up. This is the kind of story that I love to listen to or read, but I also hate reading because of being a parent. I’m realizing, almost three years into parenthood, that having children is terrifying. You’re in charge of these little creatures who, at this age, don’t quite realize that they need to stay with you to be safe. They could wander off, get hurt, get kidnapped, or worse and it’s really, really scary to read a story like this. While I enjoyed the story between Emmy and her friends, I really empathized with the parents and how they wanted to keep their kids safe after Oliver’s disappearance. As a daughter, I can see how frustrated Emmy would be, but as a mother, I can see her reasoning for being so cautious.
Anyway, this was a really good story to listen to. It wasn’t just a sweet romance (though that was a really good part of it), but it also had lots of friendship. It kind of made me think of those people who I still think of as friends, who I don’t ever see. It made me think about how we never see each other and how we all change and can so much change keep a friendship strong and true? With Oliver being taken away so long ago, how does he fit in now? Be it one year or ten years, I wonder how I fit in with my own friendships when I don’t see a friend for years. When do you go from being friends to acquaintances? How do you fit back into the same life you had when you’re not really the same person?
As I write this review now, I realize that this book made me think a lot more than I thought it did! It was still very cute, funny, sweet, and charming, but definitely one of those books that is hard to read. Maybe not so much as a teenager, because I don’t think they quite understand, but as a mother this is the kind of book I read that makes me realize how much love I have for my own kids, and how fierce that love is – and maybe all those times my parents were (then unfairly) keeping me safe, I can tell them that now I totally and completely get it.