I received this book for free from The Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Emmy & Oliver by Robin Benway
Published by HarperTeen on June 23rd, 2015
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Drama, Family, Young Adult
Source: The Publisher
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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?
Readers who love Sarah Dessen will tear through these pages with hearts in throats as Emmy and Oliver struggle to face the messy, confusing consequences of Oliver’s father’s crime. Full of romance, coming-of-age emotion, and heartache, these two equally compelling characters create an unforgettable story.
1. Strong Friendships & Family
This group of friends is the real, honest and loving friendships that I LOVE seeing in Young Adult. We see the “fenemies” thing done often, and that is NOT the case there. The four were close before Oliver disappeared – and the three left behind stayed that way. Once Oliver returns, the dynamic is still there it just takes time to get reacquainted and for things to fit as they did.
Although Emmy’s parents were on the… paranoid side, they were involved. They are a strong, tight-knit family (with a few secrets, sure) and it was just so real and honest. I loved the quirky banter between Emmy and her parents. I loved how much they supported Oliver’s mother, and continued to support her all those years later.
Now, I don’t agree with what Oliver’s father had done – but I must say his love for Oliver was obvious. Family, overall, plays such a huge part of Emmy & Oliver; and it was often thought-provoking too.
2. The Romance is the CUTEST
While this is one of my favorite aspects of Emmy & Oliver – it is far from being a romance novel. Emmy & Oliver slowly get to know each other, opening up about their secrets and fears – and coming to terms with how everything has affected them and will continue to do so. I loved how Oliver pushed Emmy to go for her dreams, even though Emmy was scared of what would happen. Emmy in turn, was Oliver’s net and kept him from drifting off. Their relationship is one of the sweetest I have read about in young adult, and reminds of that first all-consuming love as a teenager.
I don’t talk about “feels” often – but Emmy & Oliver had me smiling to myself and just full of good feelings once I finished. It wasn’t just the fun, loving friendships and family. Or the romance. Oliver didn’t initially understand a lot about his mother growing up – and watching him learn about what happened 10 years ago and the WHYS, created so much pain and confusion. Him sorting through all of that was just heart breaking.
It also made me appreciate his character more, simply because he loved his dad. And why wouldn’t he, ya know? It was just tough to handle at times – but light enough to get through.
My Overall Thoughts
I just adored this book to pieces. The strong, loving relationships between all the characters and the humor. Best of all, I loved how it ended. Their journey is not over yet.
Tell Me Your Thoughts
- Have you read Emmy & Oliver? If so, what did you think?
- If not, does this sound like something you would enjoy?
Tonyalee is an avid reader, gym junkie, coffee addicted workaholic, and blogger. Be sure to follow on Twitter & Instagram for random shenanigans.