by Emma Scott (Goodreads Author)
5 Thousands of moments stars
ARC provided by Netgalley in exchange fom an honest review
THERE ARE PROBABLY GOING TO BE SPOILERS, SO DO NOT READ IF YOU’RE GOING TO READ THIS BOOK. I’M SERIOUS. A SINGLE SPOILER COULD RUIN YOUR WHOLE READING EXPERIENCE.
Do you know what “The Fault of Our Stars” and “Me Before You” have in common besides the obvious? That I haven’t read them. I wouldn’t touch them with a ten foot pole because reading is my escape from reality. Having my heart ripped out of my chest is not my idea of fun.
I don’t do emotional reads. It’s not my thing.
It’s not what I’m used to. In PRN if someone dies chances are they’re going to resuscitare in less than 3 chapters. In contemporary romances we have cases à la Jake Weston, or Warren McPhearson. I guess one of the reasons it hit me so hard and so suddenly in the end it was because I wasn’t expecting it. Now you’re probably thinking: “What special brand of stupid must you be not to expect it when it’s clear from page one?” My answer is: “The brand that is used to HEA, kittens and rainbows, even when there’s a slew of bullets Swiss-cheesing a character’s heart.” I was so sure something would happen and save him. Namely Theo dying somehow and donating all his compatible organs to his brother. I was hoping for it to happen, and I don’t care if that makes me a bad person. Even after I read the word “funeral” I was sure it was Theo’s and that the author would soon say something like “Jonah walked to his brother’s grave.” When that didn’t happen… that’s when I lost it.
It was the ineluctability of it all that torn me. He didn’t do anything bad. It was no ones’ fault. It was just the way his life went. And although it was incredible the way he lived his last months, the love he and Kacey shared… it still left me bereft and grieving.
Jonah’s character was so remarkable, which made his death so much more unbearable. He’s this sweet, talented, brave young man who at times made me even forget of his condition because until the last third of the book he was somewhat normal. I loved his POVs, how he always tried to wring life out of every moment, but without desperation. He was so quiet in his beauty and strength.
I watched the firelight cast a glow over the faces of the people I loved best. I captured the moments in mental snapshots.
Oscar’s laughing face, firelight catching Dena’s earring, Holly’s squeak of alarm when her marshmallow caught fire, Theo holding a hot dog straight up and turning his head sideways to bite it. And Kacey leaning her chin on the heel of her hand, glancing sideways at me, leaning toward me…
I committed these moments to memories with the hope I might take them with me wherever I went next.
Kacey was a surprise. At first I was wary of her, but the changes in her life she did for him and for herself, the mere fact that she was strong enough to stick around until the end… I wanted to hug her so much. I wanted to take away her pain because, especially in the second part, Scott truly managed to make their relationship bloom and blossom into this rare, perfect flower. And maybe its perfection was partly due to the desperation lacing their time together, to that “live in the moment” attitude they were forced to adopt. Whatever the reason, Kacey’s evolution was almost a rebirth.
Their relationship was such a natural progression. It was slow at first, since Jonah pushed her away, not wanting her to get to attached to someone with an expiration date. But as time passed, it was clear they were inevitable. When they finally jumped into it, it felt right, it felt perfect, like it was the obvious next-step.
Jonah held me as I floated on my back, my head in the curve of his shoulder, and I had the fleeting wish that we could live here. Not in San Diego but in this day, these moments, over and over again, forever.
The writing style was flawless. It adorned my heart with the most beautiful, warming feelings, only to shatter it like glass in the end. The characters felt real, alive, pulsing; and even though this book crushed me and left me gasping through the tears, I’m happy it happened.
Kacey said: “I had known Jonah Fletcher. I had been loved by him, and it was a privilege I would carry with me for the rest of my life”.
That’s how I feel: honored to have read such a wonderful book. Honored to have read Jonah’s story, to have known him through Scott’s words.