I’ll Meet You There by Heather Demetrios, published February 2015 by Henry Holt and Co.
Read: March 2015
Genre: Young Adult/Romance/Contemporary/Military/Issues
Source: Gifted – Stef @ Caught Read Handed
Get It Now: Wordery
Goodreads Synopsis: If 17 year old Skylar Evans were a typical Creek View girl, her future would involve a double-wide trailer, a baby on her hip, and the graveyard shift at Taco Bell. But after graduation, the only thing standing between straight-edge Skylar and art school are three minimum-wage months of summer. Skylar can taste the freedom—that is, until her mother loses her job and everything starts coming apart. Torn between her dreams and the people she loves, Skylar realizes everything she’s ever worked for is on the line.
Nineteen-year-old Josh Mitchell had a different ticket out of Creek View: the Marines. But after his leg is blown off in Afghanistan, he returns home, a shell of the cocksure boy he used to be. What brings Skylar and Josh together is working at the Paradise—a quirky motel off California’s dusty Highway 99. Despite their differences, their shared isolation turns into an unexpected friendship and soon, something deeper.
I received a beautiful hardcopy of this book from Stef for my birthday in February, and I adored it! It’s a dual POV, which I of course love, and Demetrios was excellent at distinguishing between the two MC’s voices. The romance was so well done, and the Paradise motel practically becomes a character in its own right. This was one of my favourite books of the year, and one I’ll come back to again and again.
This book really made the rounds in the online community before its release, and so many bloggers went INSANE over it. It wasn’t too badly hyped for me, in the sense that commercially it wasn’t popular yet, but I still went into it with high expectations. These were half-met. OK, maybe two-thirds met. But the great thing about this read is that it has stayed with me long after I finished it, and I’m looking forward to rereading it. Definitely go in to this one when the blogosphere isn’t going daft over it, it will make your read much more enjoyable.
I loved the story-lines in this novel, I enjoyed how real they were, and at times, even how dark they could be. I loved the small-town aspect, the multitude of friendships and relationships that are all given some page-time, and the development of the characters as they all face their own real-life issues and problems – this book packed a punch! It could be gritty, and raw, and unfair, but it could also be sweet, and romantic, and real.
When I saw this book quoted anywhere, the writing seemed to be so, so beautiful. The actual experience of reading this book was great, at some points, but it didn’t feel just as “quotable” while I was reading it, as it had seemed in some other reviews. I guess that’s pretty common when snippets of text are used, and the writing style was probably one of the most-hyped elements of this book.
I had to give myself a little breathing space before reviewing this one, to try and compile my thoughts rationally, as I think I had this on such a pedestal before reading it, that straight after finishing it I would have rated it lower than it deserved. Just putting this review together is making me want to reread this book immediately. It’s also worth noting that at the back of my edition is a letter from the author, which made me cry nearly more than the book itself did, do not skip the letter.
“I don’t really know what it means to move on, but lately, with Sky, I’m starting to feel like I want to because when I look at her, I don’t see you or the war or any of the shit in my head. I just see her, and it’s like suddenly I can breathe again after holding my breath for so long.”
“He was the parts of the day where I smiled.”
“The Josh I grew up around, with two legs and an ego that couldn’t fit through the door? I didn’t love him. I didn’t even always like him.” One corner of his mouth turned up. “This is who you are. The real you.” I rested my forehead against his. “And I want you so fucking bad.”
Have you read I’ll Meet You There? What did you think of it? Let me know in the comments! Also, have you read any other Demetrios books? What would you recommend I try next?
I want to read this one at some point. And I, too, am a fan of multiple perspective but I think 3 is my limit. Lol.
There’s only two perspectives in this, from memory, but both are written very differently and with unique voices. I want to read this again! I need more time!! I think you’ll like this one, it’s a strong, deep YA/NA. R x
I really loved this book. I’m so glad the hype didn’t ruin it for me. A really wonderful read! Great review, Rach. xo
Thanks, B! It’s because of this read that I tend to stay away from reviews for books I want to read now, I’ll bookmark them and come back to them later, but that can be a vicious circle, because I only found out about this read by stumbling upon a review of it… R x
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Wonderful review. I read and really enjoyed this one too, even though I had a few issues with the book. I thought it was a beautiful story. I don’t think I read the letter at the end of mine, so thank you for that, I’m going to go read that now and probably cry!
Thank you! You’ll have to DM me what your issues were, I’m intrigued. And if you find the letter and read it let me know!! R x
Well if it’s one of your favourites of the year, then being your rating twin, I need to get on with this one!
And this quote –
“He was the parts of the day where I smiled.” – just gives me all the feels already! 🙂
I think I felt a bit like this after reading FanGirl, I loved it but after all the hype I expected something amazing. But now nearly 2 years after reading it, I still remember the characters so vividly that I think I probably should have rated it higher. But that initially letdown affected my rating. If I just picked up the book and knew nothing about it, I would have been more generous but I was harder to please because of those sky high expectations.
HAHA Have we ever had very different ratings? I’m going to go do a Goodreads comparison. It’s scary how often they are the same to the same half star lol I think you’ll really love this one!! Lots of swoons, but lots of more serious issues too.
Yep, I think right after reading this, I almost felt a tad disappointed because of the build-up, but with reflection it’s stayed with me, and I want to reread it, and I think about it a lot. The love grew on me. Let me know when you read it!! Can’t wait to see your review! R x
I haven’t even read anything by this author yet! THE SAME. I KNOW. But I do want to!! I didn’t even know the blogosphere was going nuts over it?! Omg. I think I live under a rock sometimes. XD
I haven’t read anything else, yet, but I highly recommend this one! R x
Great review. I remember I kept seeing this books around and took the plunge and treated myself to a copy about March or April time and I absolutely loved it. I wasn’t too sure at first, but I’d seen a couple of things about a girl trying to get out and the storyline intrigued me and I just fell in love. This book was just perfect and it’s hard to say why. I think it was partly because all the characters felt real and Demetrios wrote her main character’s voices so perfectly. I think it was also because the conflict that happened was so real Skylar felt this connection but she had spent her entire time desperate to get out of her town so to have found a connection to someone there was difficult for her.
You say writing the review made you want to reread, reading the review has made me eye up the book on my shelf. I may have to revisit again sometime soon, although I don’t like rereading in the same year.
Thanks, Becky! Glad you enjoyed this one so much! I haven’t tried anything else by Demetrios yet, but I think this will be a hard one to top. maybe because the story meant so much to her personally? But she really got it right with this one. Haha I’m still itching to reread this one, and reading your comment is making me want to grab it even more so… Unfortunately, Queen of Shadows just landed, and I’ve a couple of other books I really need to get to. So not now, but soon! R x
I agree that it was hard not to let the hype set expectations WAY high for this one, but I think it lived up to them! So glad I read it!!!
Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction
I wanted to write you a note of thanks and praise for the exquisite novel I ll Meet you There. Thank you for putting into words all the experiences and emotions relating to serving in the military my father couldn t find but has wanted me to understand.
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