Author: Kristina McBride
Publication: June 26, 2012
Thank you Netgalley and Egmont. *gets tissues* Kristina McBride writes a gut-wrenching story of young love, tragic loss and forgiveness as a group of life long friends attempt to navigate their way through grief after an accident that leaves them all wondering if one moment really is all it takes to change a life forever.
After a night of partying, Maggie, Joey and the rest of their friends head into a holiday weekend to kick off what they expect will be a fun filled summer before beginning their Senior Year of High School. The day begins like any other but ends with Joey's death and Maggie's memory loss. As the days go by, secrets will be revealed and lies uncovered that will have them all questioning if they really know each other at all?
Maggie, Joey, Adam, Shannon, Tanna and Pete have been friends since kindergarten. They do everything together, always have each others backs,are like extensions of each others families. Adam is the steady one who always makes the others feel safe. Tanna is the friendly one, Pete the laid back, Mr. Feel-Good and Shannon is the resident Witch with a "B". Maggie is the cautious one of the group, the polar opposite of her daredevil boyfriend Joey. If there's a risk to take or a rule to break, Joey's the one to push the limit.
Maggie and Joey have been dating for almost two years and to her they've got the perfect relationship, well, almost. She has big plans for their Senior Year, like finally telling him she loves him (which she almost does at the top of the cliff) and she's ready to take the plunge with him (in more ways than one). She's the only in their group whose yet to jump off of the cliff at the gorge, (because she's deathly afraid of heights) but she feels like she's ready now with Joey by her side, holding her hand. So as they prepare to go for it, he reassures her with a kiss, the countdown begins and then something happens to make her hesitate... When it's over and everyone is peppering her with questions, all she remembers is the screaming, the look on Adam's face when he comes to find her, the blood and Joey's lifeless body at the bottom of the gorge.
Maggie is haunted by regret and the "what if's". What if she'd told Joey she loved him as they hiked up the hill, what if she'd made him stay a little longer the night before, after the party, what if, what if, what if? Would it have made a difference? Would Joey still be here, safe with her? But as her memory begins to piece itself back together, Maggie discovers that Joey was keeping secrets from her and he wasn't the only one. She starts to question everything she ever believed to be true about their relationship and the people she's called friends her entire life. When the truth of what really happened up on the cliff comes out and why, Maggie will have to decide whether one moment really does change a life forever, or if life is more about the choices we make.
This is one of those books that gives you that "uh-oh", "pit in the stomach" feelings from the get go and stays there until the last chapter. (That isn't a bad thing necessarily.) My heart broke for Maggie on top of that cliff, in more ways than one and continued to do so throughout the story. Each time she was betrayed I felt a stab in the chest for her. At the same time that she seemed to miss the clues with Joey, she also missed the "other" clues. *wink* *wink*. When she learned the truth about "the others" my heart broke all over again but I was happy with the way it ended. *clutches chest*
The only thing I felt was missing, and this is just a "Jen" thing, - I would have loved to see Maggie a year or two down the road. An Epilogue showing how she was doing would've been good for my heart that, yanno, had been broken into a million pieces by the end of the book. *looks for all the pieces to glue back together* ;)