Author: Robin Benway
Publisher: Harper Teen
Publication Date: July 2015
Genre: Young Adult Fiction/Contemporary
Series or Stand Alone: Stand Alone
Synopsis can be found here.
I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Ten years ago, Oliver was kidnapped by his father and disappeared, leaving behind a distraught mother and a small town that held precious friends and loved ones. Now Oliver is back, older and unsure. And there’s Emmy, who was his best friend Who was devasted when he went away. and who may be the only person who can help him now that he’s back.
I loved Emmy & Oliver.
Emmy clings onto the memories of her time with her best friend Oliver, seven years old. She doesn’t really know who this Oliver is now, but she’s curious. She lives a very sheltered life because once Oliver disappeared, the whole town went on lock down. Her parents are super strict, and decided she should take classes at the community college and live at home for a while after graduating. She’s had to sneak out everyday to surf because her parents would be crazy with worry and forbid it if they knew she was doing it. And then Oliver comes back and shows Emmy that she has to say what she wants aloud.
Oliver is a brilliant character who I really love. He is out of place, feeling guilty, angry and confused. Every emotional you thought would probably go through someone in his position, Benway does a beautiful job with Oliver’s emotional struggles, loving and hating both his parents in equal measure. Now he’ thrown back into this life hat he doesn’t remember, with friends he doesn’t know and he misses his father, who kidnapped him. he is so happy and sad to see his mother, who he thought had abandoned him. And he slowly comes out of his shell with the help of Emmy and his new friends. I also really love how Oliver showed how he was upset, his cutting remarks, his sarcasm. Rang true to me. I could hear him in my head, feel his frustrations.
The story moves gently and openly, allowing the characters to breathe and grow. I was surprised by how angry I was at Emmy’s parents and how they treated her and how I felt emotionally towards Oliver’s mom and dad. Everyone in this book is trying to find a way out of the mess, whether they realize that Oliver’s disappearance greatly effected them or not.
Overall, Emmy & Oliver is a story I want to read again.
Rating 9 Ridiculously Awesome like Cookies and Ice Cream