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.The Infinite Moment of Us by Lauren Myracle
Published by Abrams on 2013-08-27
Genres: Contemporary, Dating & Sex, Social Issues, Young Adult
Source: the Publisher via NetGalley
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For as long as she can remember, Wren Gray’s goal has been to please her parents. But as high school graduation nears, so does an uncomfortable realization: Pleasing her parents once overlapped with pleasing herself, but now... not so much. Wren needs to honor her own desires, but how can she if she doesn’t even know what they are?
Charlie Parker, on the other hand, is painfully aware of his heart’s desire. A gentle boy with a troubled past, Charlie has loved Wren since the day he first saw her. But a girl like Wren would never fall for a guy like Charlie—at least not the sort of guy Charlie believes himself to be.
And yet certain things are written in the stars. And in the summer after high school, Wren and Charlie’s souls will collide. But souls are complicated, as are the bodies that house them...
Sexy, romantic, and oh-so-true to life, this is an unforgettable look at first love from one of young adult fiction’s greatest writers.
*You should know before you pick this up that there is sex in this book. And there is no lack of details either. As Lauren Myracle explains in a letter at the beginning of the ARC, she didn’t want to write a YA book that she’d be okay with a 12-year-old reading. And I’d say she accomplished this. So if you like your books more on the clean side, I’d keep on walking.*
This is my first Lauren Myracle book and I was really excited to read it. But, unfortunately, it was not the experience I was hoping for. Since reading it, I’ve been having a hard time putting my thoughts into sentences and paragraphs that make sense so I decided to go with a good old-fashioned pro/con list for this review. There are some things I liked about this book but several things definitely made me cringe. And no matter how beautiful the writing may be, in the end, I can’t get past the parts that I didn’t like enough to be able to really endorse this book. But when you’re reading my review, just remember that many people have loved this book and the things that bothered me may not affect your enjoyment of this book at all. So if you’re ready, you may proceed.
- The romance was sweet in the beginning and had a slight Eleanor & Park feel to it which I liked. It started very sweetly between two misfits who’d been crushing on each other for a while. It turned serious quickly but I really enjoyed the beginning parts where they talked about their feelings for each other and tried to figure out what was happening between them.
- The writing definitely captivated me. There were some really beautiful parts. And it was quick, I read it in one day.
- I’m totally in love with Wren’s best friend. Everyone needs a friend like her. Someone who’s honest and true and real and loyal. She was fantastic. And I think I may have liked the story with her and her crush more than Charlie and Wren.
- Charlie was a nice guy. An actual nice guy. Maybe too nice. But I definitely appreciate when a YA book has a nice guy as the interest.
- I wasn’t a fan of Wren. She was self-centered and whiny and felt closer to 16 than to a high school graduate. So you have parents that think they know what’s best for you? They want you to go to college? I get that they’re a little controlling. So what. Your boyfriend is in the foster care system because his mother was not good to him. His foster-brother is paralyzed. His foster parents are barely scraping by. He’s working and trying to help his family. But you want to talk to him now? Even though you’re just hanging out at your friend’s pool? Ok, cool. I’m sure it’s important. She was just too whiny and needy and self-centered to really connect to.
- *Be warned, this is a bit ranty. Sorry.* Charlie and Wren’s relationship turns serious pretty early on. I’m fine with that. That happens. I’m also fine with sex in YA books. I get it. Especially in this book where the characters are 18 and just graduated from high school. I also appreciate that they actually talked about sex before they had it. It wasn’t something that just happened, they prepared for the moment. What I’m not okay with is sex in YA books that purposefully don’t use condoms. Wren went on the pill and made Charlie get tested so that they wouldn’t have to use condoms. In my book, unless you’re supporting yourself and could then also support a child, you take the pill and use condoms. I’m just not okay with YA books that teenagers will read that don’t support the use of condoms. I just don’t understand why you would even think it necessary to add that. And I’m definitely torn about this because I do really appreciate that the author even discusses this. So many YA books just brush over the details or fade to black when things start happening. But Myracle’s characters actually discuss sex before they have it and what they want to happen. I just don’t understand the justification for the characters to promote not using condoms. *Okay, rant over. Moving on.*
- The big event that occurs near the end is weird. I found it unnecessary and a little forced.
- The very end of the book made me roll my eyes. I was hoping it could be a little more mature since we’re dealing with 18-year-olds growing up and supposedly setting off on their own paths, but it just didn’t deliver. I wanted some growth from Wren and maybe an ending that felt a little like Perfect Chemistry’s ending. I was a little disappointed.
Final Thoughts: I think this book will probably be a bit polarizing. There are already many reviews from people who have loved it. There are also a few from people who didn’t. So I think you’ll have to decide for yourself if it sounds like something you’ll want to try. Like I said earlier, the writing is actually good and there are some beautiful moments. And with a sweet romance and a nice YA male interest, there are definitely lots of good parts to this book. I’m not saying that there’s nothing positive here. I’m just saying that for me, the negatives outweighed them this time. I gave The Infinite Moment of Us two stars.