Since you’ve been gone by Morgan Matson

“Before Sloane, Emily didn’t go to parties, she barely talked to guys, and she didn’t do anything crazy. Enter Sloane, social tornado and the best kind of best friend—someone who yanks you out of your shell.

But right before what should have been an epic summer, Sloane just…disappears. No note. No calls. No texts. No Sloane. There’s just a random to-do list with thirteen bizarre tasks that Emily would never try. But what if they can lead her to Sloane?

Apple picking at night? Okay, easy enough.

Dance until dawn? Sure. Why not?

Kiss a stranger? Wait…what?

Go Skinny Dipping? Um…

Getting through Sloane’s list will mean a lot of firsts, and with a whole summer ahead of her—and with the unexpected help of the handsome Frank Porter—who knows what she’ll find.”

This book is a nice, easy summer read. I got through it in a few hours – though maybe I’m just a little bit obsessive – and it wasn’t particularly challenging. It was a sweet book, not as annoyingly girly as a lot of other ones I read over the summer. One thing I have to say is that it’s a little bit obvious – it was very clear right from the blurb what was going to happen, as nothing aside from what the blurb details actually happens.

We don’t actually encounter Sloane until near the end of the book, so we mainly get to know her through a series of flashbacks. Emily has turned Sloane into some kind of perfect girl in the earlier flashbacks, and I was all prepared for the moment at the end where we realise just how evil and manipulative Sloane really is, but it didn’t come, which was a pleasant surprise. Sloane does become a little more human as the book goes on, though, which was nice. The characters were easy to relate to and the book was generally easy to get lost in.

It was aimed at teens – teen girls in particular, which is pretty clear from the front cover. I didn’t like Frank very much, I’ve got to say – he was ordinary. (But then again, I prefer characters like Jace or Tobias, so I’m biased.) But the sheer fact that he wasn’t extraordinary in any way – no magic powers, no dark past – made him and Emily far easier to relate to. The whole “I’ve got a girlfriend, we’ve been happy together for years and years” thing seemed a bit cliched to me, but then I’m picky like that.

One thing I adored was Emily’s family. The whole idea of “Living Room Theatre” made me laugh and every scene including her family was incredibly fun.

Overall – it’s one of those things that you’ll read when bored over the summer, enjoy it more than you anticipated, and then forget about the next month because it’s nothing special. It’s a good book if you’re looking for a light read, though, and the characters are pretty relatable.

 

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