Advance Reader Copy, 344 pages
April 19th 2016
Bloomsbury USA Childrens
Received from publisher in exchange for an honest review.
I adored Emery Lord’s last two novels, with Open Road Summer being my favourite. However, I was initially reluctant to pick up When We Collided seeing as the synopsis clearly indicated that it won’t be as light-hearted as her last two books. Ultimately I read a bit of it in the fall before returning to other review books that had impending release dates. Yet I couldn’t get When We Collided out of my head thus with a bit of nudging from Brittany over at This is the Story of My(Reading) Life I finished reading the book in October despite it not releasing until April of the following year.
As previously mentioned, When We Collided has a slightly different feel to it compared to the last two Emery Lord books. The story is told from the dual POVs of Jonah Daniels and Vivi Alexander and it addresses various difficult yet imperative topics such as mental illness, death and dysfunctional family dynamics. As always. Emery Lord’s prose is her greatest strength since the novel is filled with numerous meaningful quotes concerning life, existence and relationships that you just feel the urge to write them immediately all down.
Additionally Lord also excels at writing relationships, and while I miss the female friendships that were more predominant in her other books there were instead some excellently written familial relationships in this book. In fact, I ended up falling for the characters that made up the Daniels family just as Vivi did since they were written in such an authentic and endearing manner in the book. Of the two voices, I’ll admit that Vivi is not the easiest character to love or even connect with. Jonah is definitely easier to love as he’s incredibly sweet, understanding and hardworking. However, it’s obvious that despite their differences, and at least for the duration of the summer Vivi and Jonah need each other.
When We Collided is in part a short love story that is clearly not meant to last forever. Nevertheless, even though the love story between Jonah and Vivi was brief it doesn’t mean it wasn’t filled with love. Furthermore, by the novel’s conclusion the experience has left both of them changed for the better which in turn creates a satisfying story…at least that’s how I feel.
Regardless of how this book came into my possession, the above review consists of my honest opinion of the book and my opinion only.