Nova’s life used to be full of joy and hope….until tragedy strikes. Now, she’s a shell of her former self, just trying to get by without falling apart again. Then Quinton enters the picture and she can’t help but be drawn to him, with his honey-brown eyes that remind her so much of someone she used to know. Quinton knows he isn’t worthy of Nova’s attention, but he can’t seem to resist her sweetness. She manages to make him smile, which is something he hasn’t done in longer than he can remember. Can these two live in the present for long enough to make it work or will the past catch up to them?
Nova is that sweet girl who has witnessed death a time too many. She doesn’t know how to move on after her boyfriend passes on. She loved him so much and she just can’t tolerate the idea that his beautiful face and artistic abilities no longer grace this world. And when Quinton walks in with nearly identical honey brown eyes containing the same sadness she always saw in Landon’s, she becomes a bit enraptured with this boy. She knows he isn’t Landon, but the pull to know him and erase that sadness is more than she can resist. Her journey into the drug world is a bit unsettling. Her pull to achieve that numbing inner silence both drew me in and horrified me. I’m not a fan of drugs, I can’t even tolerate cigarettes, so I don’t think I’ll ever understand Mary Jane’s call to Nova, but it fascinated me nonetheless.
Quinton is sweet and such a fucking idiot. He’s the epitome of grieving idiot. He’s desire to protect Nova from this dark and dirty world was admirable, but I just wanted to slap some sense into the boy. It’s obvious to everyone that the terrible car accident was not his fault. He was the only sober one in the the car wearing a seatbelt for fucks sake. But he’s determined to deny himself any of the joys of life and spend his time killing himself one drug filled hit at a time. There just aren’t words for that. I sympathize with him because I blame myself for everything, but this isn’t the answer!
Then there is the ghost of Landon. Don’t misread this, Landon does not appear here in ghost form, it’s just a metaphor for his memories haunting Nova. Landon is a character I’m not a fan of. If you have sensitive opinions about depression and suicide, please stop reading here because you won’t like my opinion. The last time I posted a review with negative opinions about depression, it got lots of bad comments, so I’m hesitant to do it again. But this is my blog, putting out my opinion, and I did warn you, right? WHAT THE FUCK, DUDE? You have a life full of people who love you and would bend over backwards to help you and instead of making the tinsy effort to tell them something is wrong so they can get you help, you just end it? Not. Fucking. Cool. I have been depressed, sometimes I think I still suffer from it a bit, so don’t tell me I don’t understand what he’s going through, though mine wasn’t nearly as severe. Giving up is never the goddamn answer. Did you even seriously consider for a moment what it would do to your family? Nova? How they will always blame themselves? You claim to love Nova ssssoooo much, but not enough to even try to stay with her? Not enough to even attempt anti-depressants and counselling all that nonsense? I mean, it’s one thing if you have exhausted all your resources to find something that makes it better and nothing works, but for you to not even try? I just….there aren’t any words or gifs adequate to describe my feelings about that.
There is also the idiotic character that is Delilah. Nova’s “best friend” who slowly pushes her into the world of drugs. The idiot who stays with her abusive drug-dealing boyfriend despite every sign she should run. And she should run. I’ve read the next book, things get infinitely worse for her. Grow a goddamn brain. I’m so sick of seeing this, both in literature and real life. What the fuck does he have that is so goddamn special that you just can’t live without him? Money? Nope, he’s always going broke because of the drugs? Good looks? Nope, druggies aren’t attractive. Charming personality? No, rage monkeys aren’t charming. I get that you apparently have no self-worth but, seriously? This is what you think you deserve? This is where you want your life to be? Once again, there just aren’t words for that. Grow a fucking backbone and step out on your own. Sure, it’ll be lonely, but that’s a fuckload better than the abuse your are receiving.
This is something different than we normally get from Sorensen. Instead of a tale about two people find each other and helping each other improve, it’s much more about Nova’s journey to improve herself. Sure, she spirals down into the drug world for a short while, but she eventually wakes up and realizes what she wants…and this isn’t it. Sure, there is the obvious attraction between her and Quinton and a handful of smutty scenes between the two, but this isn’t Quinton coming to his senses and rescuing Nova. It was a refreshing change, to see her realize she really is above all this drama and she deserves better.
This deserves five stars if for no other reason than it managed to elicit a full range of emotions from me. Sorensen has proven to be talented at not only creating twisted characters, but pulling you along for the ride. You feel everything they feel, whether you really want to or not. You rejoice when their happy and cry when their sad and ache when they hurt. It’s completely amazing, and maybe a tad annoying. I don’t read to get sad, I read to get happy, but the ride would have been more than a little just one sided if it was always happy and part of why I love Jessica is that she is brave enough to go into the darker side of things. It’s a dark and thrilling tale of a young girls journey back to the self she lost long ago. It’s so much more than I was expecting and I loved every second of it.