So have you ever been scared that when you read a book for the second time, it will lose its luster? It has been almost one year since I first met these wonderful characters and the writing was just as beautiful as I remember.
Natsya has gone through a horrible trauma and she goes to live with her aunt. Her parents are not the typical absentee parents one usually sees in YA literature. They are kind of absent, but it is Natsya’s choice. She wants to go to a new school where no one knows her and live with someone she feels doesn’t expect anything from her. Every time her mom or brother tries to make an overture towards her, it’s heartbreaking. Her family wants to reconnect so badly, but the problem is that they want the old Natsya. And that Natsya is dead.
Natsya does everything she can to push everyone away. Her trick? She doesn’t speak at all. Natsya also dresses extremely provocatively. She wears really tight and revealing clothes. She figures any guy who pays attention to her will only want one thing and she is okay with that. She just isn’t okay with them loving her or expecting any kind of attachment. So it’s interesting that she manages to build friendships and a sort of family, even with the no speaking thing. She becomes friends with Drew, a harmless flirt, and Clay, an artist with a fascination for drawing her. Drew seemed like a jerk at first because of all the sexual innuendo he threw her way. But he was all talk. There was a scene where Natsya’s mom asked what she was to them and he said, “Family.” Awww. Try not to get emotional with that. Drew became so protective of her and it was really sweet.
As for Josh, I just completely fell in love with him and rooted so hard for their relationship. Josh has lost his entire family and he is now emancipated. He is very close to Drew’s family, but other than that, he tries not to get too attached. He doesn’t want to lose anyone else and that is his biggest fear. It’s not really that difficult to understand why Natsya feels safe with him. He accepts her silence and her company without expecting anything in return. Their relationship is ADORABLE. He starts calling her “Sunshine” at the beginning of the book, mainly because she dresses in all black and never speaks or smiles. I kind of loved that. And after they hang out in silence for weeks, she actually starts speaking to him. He is the only one she feels safe talking to. I also thought they were so cute on their first date. Because they both have issues, it was actually a first date for both of them and they had no idea how to be “normal.”
Of course there is drama because of Natsya’s past. She refuses to tell Josh anything about her past. She feels completely ruined and undeserving of what Josh is offering. I got so frustrated when she pushed him away and I just wanted them to be together again. I adored the very slow buildup of their relationship and was anxiously awaiting the reveal of what happened to Natsya. I thought the ending was absolutely perfect and I really can’t think of a single thing I would change about this book.
When I finished this book a year ago, I immediately wanted to read it again because I loved it so much. I felt the exact same way this time. I just did not want to let go of these characters.
Buy/Borrow/Skip: There is a reason this is one of my favorite books ever. If you haven't read this one yet, you need to. BUY THIS BOOK!!