I received this book for free from the Publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.One Moment by Kristina McBride
Published by Usborne Publishing Ltd on 2013-07-01
Genres: Death & Dying, Love & Romance, Social Issues, Young Adult
Source: the Publisher via NetGalley
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This was supposed to be the best summer of Maggie’s life. Now it’s the one she’d do anything to forget.
Maggie remembers hanging out at the gorge with her closest friends after a blowout party. She remembers climbing the trail with her perfect boyfriend, Joey. She remembers that last kiss, soft, lingering, and meant to reassure her. So why can’t she remember what happened in the moment before they were supposed to dive? Why was she left cowering at the top of the cliff, while Joey floated in the water below–dead?
As Maggie’s memories return in snatches, nothing seems to make sense. Why was Joey acting so strangely at the party? Where did he go after taking her home? And if Joey was keeping these secrets, what else was he hiding?
One Moment by Kristina McBride takes a look at how one moment can change everything. When Maggie and her friends are hanging out at the gorge on Memorial Day weekend, a dare leads to the death of her boyfriend. The problem is, Maggie can’t remember the events that directly proceeded his death. And she was the only one with Joey before his fall. She was supposed to jump with him, but didn’t. When Adam, their friend, finds her at the top of the cliff and sees how upset she is, he takes her home, keeping her from the police. As the days pass and an investigation is opened, Maggie starts to remember the clifftop and discovers some secrets she might wish she hadn’t learned. And she begins to wonder whether you can ever really know, and trust, another person.
This was the first book I have read from Kristina McBride and I was happy to see that I enjoyed her writing. While One Moment wasn’t my favorite book I’ve ever read, it was very well written and kept my interest. I cared about the characters, especially Maggie, Adam, and Joey’s family, and wanted to see them make it through this tragedy okay. The only reason this book didn’t become a favorite of mine was because the story was very predictable.
When we first meet Maggie and her friends, they all appear happy but it’s clear there is some underlying tension. As the book progresses, we learn the cause of the tension, but you’ll probably be able to figure it out much earlier. When we are finally told what’s been going on, the characters handle it in a believable way and the story is wrapped up nicely. I wish there had been a surprise or unexpected turn along the way. McBride does such a great job with the writing, I kept reading, hoping something different would happen, but it went exactly how I predicted it would.
All the characters are treated well and given a good amount of time. With six friends, some of them could be overlooked, but the history between them and the personalities of each are all given equal importance. My favorite of all the characters was Adam, who had grown up closest to Joey. I was especially moved by his struggle. There were plenty of emotional moments throughout the book, as you might expect, and all were well written. My one problem with the characters was that I really didn’t want to hate Joey, but I just couldn’t help it. By the end of the book he just seemed like a total jerk. And I hate to hate a dead teenager.
When I finished reading One Moment, I felt just slightly disappointed. The summary had gotten me so excited to read the book, but I felt that the predictability of the story took away from the greatness of the book. The idea that one moment can change everything is something we’ve all thought about. If we could change just that one moment, would everything be different? And as I thought about that, I wondered if maybe that was the point of McBride’s book. Not the story of Maggie and her friends, but just the idea of one moment changing everything and if we could change things, would we? If her intention was to get her readers to think about that, then she succeeded.
One Moment had the potential to be a great contemporary YA novel with great characters, a great idea, and great writing. Unfortunately, it was a little too predictable for me. I still enjoyed it and give it 3 stars. I would recommend it to people who enjoy YA contemporaries with a little bit of mystery thrown in.