Saturday, August 9, 2014

Since You've Been Gone

Since You've Been Gone by Morgan Matson
Emily's best friend Sloane disappears, almost without a trace - the only thing left behind is a to-do list.
On it, thirteen Sloane-inspired tasks that wallflower Emily wouldn't normally do, and definitely not without her best friend. But what if completing the list could bring Sloane back?

Dance until dawn?
Sure. Why not? 

Kiss a stranger?

Go skinny-dipping?
Wait ... what?

Emily only has the summer to check everything off Sloane's list.
The question is, what will she find at the end of it?

Since You've Been Gone is a great summer read and a beautiful story of finding and losing friends and falling in love. I loved the to-do list Emily tries to finish and most of all I enjoyed the friendships that formed while doing so. Emily happens to tell Frank Porter, a guy from her school she's never talked to, about the list and he becomes dedicated to help her finish it. Together with Collins, Frank's best friend, and Dawn (who becomes part of the group by sheer coincidence), Emily ticks off point by point on the list. It was beautiful to watch these friendships form and see the characters grow closer while helping Emily with the sometimes very uncomfortable tasks Sloane has left. Soon, the list becomes more of a group project than a burden Emily has to carry on her own.

At first, I didn't really like Frank, Collins was weird anyway and even Dawn seemed like a strange character. But as the story developped, I fell in love with each of them and I loved Emily's relationship to all of them. It was so great to see her grow more confident and going out of her comfort zone and it was so obvious what great support her new found friends were. While I really loved this group, I wasn't a huge fan of Sloane's. Of course, seeing her through Emily's eyes, she seemed like this amazing person at first but it also became very obvious what a dominant friend she was and why Emily has always stood in her shadow. This and the fact that she just disappeared made it very hard for me to like her. But of course, I still wanted for Emily to find her best friend and being able to talk to her.

Overall, this was just an amazing story and I recommend it to everyone. Unlike the contemporaries I usually read, this wasn't just about falling in love (even though that was part of it too) but also about friendship, which I enjoyed immensely. It's such a light read too and I got through it very quickly even though it's rather long (450 pages). Plus, who doesn't want to own that beautiful cover?

Thank you for reading!


  1. I actually may check this out! I'm not the biggest fan of contemporaries, but this sounds like something that has stood out from the crowd. Great review, Karin!

    1. Thank you so much :) Morgan Matson writes great contemporaries, I even preferred Amy & Roger's Epic Detour to this one and both are definitely worth reading.