Review: Emmy and Oliver – Robin Benway

Review: Emmy and Oliver – Robin BenwayEmmy & Oliver by Robin Benway
Published by HarperCollins
Published: June 23rd 2015
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four-half-stars

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?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 had 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.Readers who love Sarah Dessen will devour 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.

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review

I have been meaning to read a book by Robin Benway for a long time. Everyone gushes about the other books she has written but I have just never gotten to them. So when I had finished a book and needed to pick a new one the cover of Emmy and Oliver popped in my head. Best idea I have had in a long long time. I love this book, like a lot. And it really made me think about the people in the story and how I would feel if I were one or any of them.

Emmy & Oliver is the emotional story of Emmy and Oliver. When they were 7 years old their worlds were torn apart because Oliver was kidnapped by his father and missing for 10 years. The two of them went from being best friends and seeing each other every day to nothing. And then when they are 17 Oliver is all of a sudden back and Emmy, Oliver and everyone that has been missing him for a decade have no idea how to deal with it.

The beauty of Emmy & Oliver was actually something pretty simple. It was the human aspect to it. It was the fact that the story was real and possible. It was the truth factor. Because let’s be honest, this stuff happens. Parents get divorced and it is nasty and one takes the child who is the one that suffers. What Benway did with Emmy & Oliver was show the struggle and the human part of a familial kidnapping. It wasn’t glamorized for Hollywood or sensationalized for the media. It was a story of struggle and what is right and what is okay to feel. It is about getting back your life but still wanting to hold on to the old life you had even if it wasn’t what you thought it was or was supposed to be. That’s what I loved about this book.

As a child of divorce I thought about how my mom would have felt if I were Oliver. How I would have felt if I were Oliver. He was in a tough spot. He wasn’t mistreated, he was with someone he loved and who loved him. He was told stories that weren’t true but he believed to be. And then in an instant it all changed and he was left trying to figure out what was true and what was okay to feel. Then I thought about how I would feel if I were Emmy and all of a sudden my best friend was back. If I had built a life around the idea that I would never see him again to only have him show up. Basically I was invested and that is a testament to how Benway told the story and the characters she had tell the story.

Emmy & Oliver is such an emotional story of two teens finding their way back to each other and a way to be on their own. Oliver’s return causes changes in both of their lives that they have to figure out how to navigate. The story is about moving on when you don’t want to or are afraid too and it is told in a flawless manner. It is a book I will highly recommend and a book I will gladly have on my shelf. Pick this one up, but have some tissues handy for the feels.

other1
aka audrey

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