Book Review: Emily and Oliver (ARC) by Robin Benway

13132816This review is based on an advanced reader’s copy of the novel obtained through snail mail at the permission of HarperTeen. This is in no way had an effect on the integrity of my review. Please note that published novel will differ from this ARC.

Genre: 

Young Adult, Contemporary

Pages: 

352

Part of a Series?:

Standalone Novel

Release Date: 

June 23rd, 2015

You Can Find the Book At:

GoodReads

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

Book Depository

Author Website

GoodReads Summary: 

Emmy’s best friend, Oliver, reappears after being kidnapped by his father ten years ago. Emmy hopes to pick up their relationship right where it left off. Are they destined to be together? Or has fate irreparably driven them apart?

Emmy just wants to be in charge of her own life.

She wants to stay out late, surf her favorite beach—go anywhere without her parents’ relentless worrying. But Emmy’s parents can’t seem to let her grow up—not since the day Oliver disappeared.

Oliver needs a moment to figure out his heart.

He’d thought, all these years, that his dad was the good guy. He never knew that it was his father who kidnapped him and kept him on the run. Discovering it, and finding himself returned to his old hometown, all at once, has his heart racing and his thoughts swirling.

Emmy and Oliver were going to be best friends forever, or maybe even more, before their futures were ripped apart. In Emmy’s soul, despite the space and time between them, their connection has never been severed. But is their story still written in the stars? Or are their hearts like the pieces of two different puzzles—impossible to fit together?

My Review:

Dear Robin Benway, WHAT DID YOU WRITE HERE?

Okay, so I’ve read Robin Benway’s books before. I loved her books before. She is a friend of mine and she’s awesome. She’s a fantastic writer, a great inspiration and I just adore her. Getting an ARC of Emmy and Oliver made me incredibly excited and I’m even more happy that I got it now that I’ve read it.

Emmy and Oliver is an INCREDIBLE story. Its one of those stories that seems so out there, so incredibly unbelievable, but its TOTALLY believable because things like this happen. Oliver is kidnapped by his father as a child and reappears years later, as a teenager. Its difficult for him, because he was told a different story, raised a different way and then uprooted and returned to the family that he hasn’t seen in years, a family he probably doesn’t really feel like he has a bond with. It brings to mind all these girls that have suddenly been found after decades of being missing. What an incredibly traumatic experience to be kidnapped, but also traumatic to come home as well. This is what Oliver goes through and its hard to imagine.

That’s when you enter Emmy, who fell in love with Oliver as a child and has always wondered where he is, and how he is, especially since his kidnapping had such a profound effect on her parents and her own limitations in her life because of it. So when Oliver returns, that’s an experience for herself. She has no idea how to handle it. She wants to pick up where they left off as kids but she also feels like he’s a stranger, like he’s delicate and she doesn’t quite know how to interact with him.

When you put it all together, its an incredibly emotional and HUMAN story. Both Emmy and Oliver together, watching them figure out their lives and each other, and the people around them is incredibly engaging, familiar and addictive. Even if you can’t relate, you want to. You want to feel close to them and Robin does such a great job at writing these characters that they feel so real. Their stories are real and the romance that builds between them is just awesome. It has ups and downs, and it not easy because of Oliver’s past, and its beautiful to see them try and work.

This book doesn’t release until summer, but its definitely one that must be on your TBR. I adore Robin, she’s a great friend and she has written a total winner. A year ago, she talked briefly about her book and Oliver and how she wished she could talk to him, and show him a little love because of the things she put him through, and now I totally understand. I’m very excited for the official release of this book and you definitely should be too!

Rating: 

4.5 out of 5 Stars

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