Title: Since You've Been Gone
Author: Morgan Matson
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
Date Published: May 6, 2014
Genre: YA fiction, contemporary, romance, realistic fiction
Pages: 464 (hardback)
Age Range: 12+
Before Sloane, Emily didn't go to parties, she barely talked to guys, and she didn't do anything crazy. Enter Sloane, social tornado and the best kind of best friend- someone who yanks you out of your shell.
But right before what should have been an epic summer, Sloane just... disappears. There's a random to-do list with thirteen bizarre tasks that Emily would never try. But what if they can lead her to Sloane?
Apple picking at night? Okay, easy enough.
Dance until dawn? Sure. Why not?
Getting through Sloane’s list will mean a lot of firsts, and with a whole summer ahead of her—and with the unexpected help of the handsome Frank Porter—who knows what she’ll find.
Go Skinny Dipping? Ummm...No?
OHMYGOSH! Have you ever read that perfect book that embodies every single perfect thing in the universe? If not, then Since You've Been Gone is that book. And if you have, read this book anyway, because you will change your mind.
First off, since I know we're all thinking about it: But Since U Been Gone/ I can breathe for the first time/ I'm so moving on/ Yeah, yeah/ Thanks to you/ Now I get/ What I want/ Since U Been Gone. You're welcome. And yes, Kelly Clarkson was my soundtrack for this book.
Now to the book, the characters were perfect. Emily was absolutely real and realistic. She embodied the awkwardness that teenagers suffer from, and I could actually read the book as if Emily was me. Frank Porter..*dreamy sigh*.. He was a genuinely good guy through and through, sweet, caring, honest, the works. Honestly, I think that I'm gonna marry Frank Porter. Please? Collins was another amazing character, and he was more than just comic relief. Dawn was a great character too, and I could see my best friends reflected in her over and over again.
I loved how Emily and Frank became good friends before anything else, and I also loved how they didn't have a gushy love story. They didn't have long make-out sessions, and that was something that I appreciated- I like kissing as much as the next girl, but too much is... well, too much. I never had to worry about Frank trying to seduce Emily, or vice versa, because they were just friends and that was something that made the book so much better.
The book was full of cute little additions. The postcard from Sloane, the playlists from Frank and Emily, the bumper stickers. All these little touches made the book so quirky, light, and cute. I mean, I totally feel Emily with the whole country music and 80's pop thing. They're both severely underrated genres of music. Just sayin'.
The overall plot wasn't anything new, but it was amazingly done. It was fun to see Emily's growth from a huge introvert, to a slightly smaller introvert who had done wacky, put-of-the-box things. The story was really about Emily's growth without Sloane, and her growth with a new batch of friends.
All in all, this book was fantastic. The only thing I would've changed was if I could see what happened between Dawn and Emily because I was dying to see if everything worked out in the end. This book was released earlier this year, but it has already made the top of my favorites list. I've also heard great things about Morgan Matson's other books, so it's time to see what other awesomeness she has written.