03 February 2012

SAVING JUNE by Hannah Harrington [review]

Saving June by Hannah Harrington

Published: May 1st, 2011 | Harlequin Teen
Age: Young Adult, Contemporary
Pages: 322
Acquired: Bought from Amazon.com
Format: Paperback

‘If she’d waited less than two weeks, she’d be June who died in June. But I guess my sister didn’t consider that.’

Harper Scott’s older sister has always been the perfect one so when June takes her own life a week before her high school graduation, sixteen-year-old Harper is devastated. Everyone’s sorry, but no one can explain why.

When her divorcing parents decide to split her sister’s ashes into his-and-her urns, Harper takes matters into her own hands. She’ll steal the ashes and drive cross-country with her best friend, Laney, to the one place June always dreamed of going California.

Enter Jake Tolan. He’s a boy with a bad attitude, a classic-rock obsession and nothing in common with Harper’s sister. But Jake had a connection with June, and when he insists on joining them, Harper’s just desperate enough to let him. With his alternately charming and infuriating demeanour and his belief that music can see you through anything, he might be exactly what she needs.

Except June wasn’t the only one hiding something. Jake’s keeping a secret that has the power to turn Harper’s life upside down again.

When we first get into the book, it immediately jumps into the funeral for Harper's sister, June. And there we get a feel of Harper, her mother, her best friend, her [toxic] aunt, and Mr. Jacob Tolan.

From the beginning of the book until the three kids set off for California was a little slow for me, but as soon as they leave, I did not want to put this book down!
It's no surprise that contemporary novels are my favorite, and this book is a prime example why.
They're real.
The pain and anguish Harper felt about losing her sister is depicted the exact way I would handle it. Blocking it out. Pretending it wasn't real.
When Harper first meets Jacob, the cliché what is with this weirdo, I can't stand him etc. etc. etc is there, but I like that. A lot.
I thought that this book was going to be dark and kind of depressing, but it really wasn't. It had it's moments where my eyes began to sting with tears over her turmoil, but for the most part I found it fun and rather funny. Sarcasm ALWAYS wins with me! And Harper enjoys her sarcasm. It's a defense mechanism. (I can totally relate).

Jake was the kind of guy who sat quietly listening (read: obsessing) over his music while the world goes on around him. Only putting in his input when he felt it necessary, which wasn't too often. And with that, you get a feel of who he is as a person. When he let's you in, he doesn't have to say much, but you still completely understand what he's talking about. And the strength he (silently) gives Harper is amazing and beautiful.

Laney is the kind of friend you want, but don't want at the same time. She's there for you, loves you, gives you a reason to believe in all types of love. But who she is a person to herself makes you want to run. You feel like there's no way you can console her the same way she does for you. When Laney is given her own devastating news, I love the shift, still sad--but at least the focus, for awhile--is no longer on Harper. I love that Harper drops everything to help her, support her.

Harper. I relate to her so much it physically hurts. Yet, I relate to her sister even more. (Yes, the one who committed suicide.) I can't really begin to say exactly how amazing, honest, real, just (ugh) Harper is as a person. It actually kind of makes me emotional. Too many flashbacks and present emotions she brings out.

There is a journey they go through that obviously shifts and shapes their views towards their lives. It kind of reminded me of Amy and Roger's journey in Amy & Roger's Epic Detour.... But...not.

Please, read this book. I cannot wait for more from Harper Harrington!!



Author's Info:
Hannah Harrington
doesn't have much bio anywhere, so here are her links:
goodreads | blog | twitter

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