Wednesday, 25 March 2015

Review: The Last Time we Say Goodbye by Cynthia Hand

The Last Time we Say Goodbye by Cynthia Hand
Publisher: Harper Teen
Publication Date: February 10th 2015
My rating: 4 stars  


There's death all around us. We just don't pay attention. Until we do. The last time Lex was happy, it was before. When she had a family that was whole. A boyfriend she loved. Friends who didn't look at her like she might break down at any moment. Now she's just the girl whose brother killed himself. And it feels like that's all she'll ever be. As Lex starts to put her life back together, she tries to block out what happened the night Tyler died. But there's a secret she hasn't told anyone-a text Tyler sent, that could have changed everything. Lex's brother is gone. But Lex is about to discover that a ghost doesn't have to be real to keep you from moving on.

Hand’s Unearthly series was one of my all time favourite paranormal series; it was a series which made me want to look at paranormal reads in a whole another light, instead of despair all the time. So when I heard of Hand dipping into contemporary genre I was over the moon, I’m typically a contemporary girl at heart, so was excited about her first foray into this genre. As expected Hand didn’t disappoint; she wrote such a poignant novel in The Last Time We Say Goodbye and explored a girl dealing with the loss of her brother eloquently.

The Last Time We Say Goodbye was a different sort of book which dealt with the loss of a loved one, with so many books already out there dealing with this tough subject, Hand approached this story with it not only being about Ty, getting to know his character and why he may have taken his life, but from the perspective of his family and how by coming to terms with his loss they could finally come to terms with closure, but it was also a sort of journey for Ty’s family to sort of come to terms with and forgive one another.

To be honest The Last Time We Say Goodbye did take me a while to get into, I didn’t have a hard time with connecting with the characters at all, but I think it may be because I’d been on a fantasy kick and so coming back to a contemporary read dealing with a really serious issue took some time adjusting to. But I liked the way Hand explored the different venues in Lexie’s life, it wasn’t a straight forward path in which Lexie was able to deal with the loss of her brother Ty, but over the course of her grief, a new door would open which would shine light into something she didn’t know about or bring in a person into her life that was unexpected but sort of necessary for her to move forward with her life. Every one deals with grief in a different way and although Lexie’s way was to keep going, but drop everyone around her, her friends and boyfriend, I sort of wanted to know why she did, was it her only coping mechanism? Or was it something they did? We were given insights into these characters, but a full explanation doesn’t really come until the end and honestly it really took me by surprise, but I’m glad Hand left it to the end, because it did give me a better understanding of Lexie’s characters, but also the chance to appreciate her character more.

Overall The Last Time We Say Goodbye to me was a successful transition for Hand into the contemporary genre; really I didn’t expect any less of this super talented author. I fully appreciated this beautiful, but at times difficult journey that we were able to experience with Lexie.



17 comments:

  1. I loved the Unearthly series too, but while this book was well written, I can't say I loved it. I guess I prefer more upbeat YA Contemp. Still, I'd pretty much read anything Cynthia Hand writes! :)

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    1. I know what you mean, I seem to be reading such dark contemporary lately, I certainly need more upbeat fluffy contemporaries over the Summer. And Hand's writing is just gorgeous, I can't wait to see what she comes up with next!

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  2. I loved this book. I really thought Hand did a wonderful job with Lex's journey through grief. I cannot imagine going through such a tragedy. Great review!

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    1. I'm really glad that you were able to enjoy this one too Brooke, Hand once again produced a beautiful read!

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  3. I haven't read anything by this author so far, but my friends keep recommending me this book since I'm a masochist reader who adores emotional, touching stories. I already have it on my tbr-list and plan to read it as soon as I'm in the right type of mood for this kind of read. Lovely review, Jasprit! Glad you enjoyed it.

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    1. hahaha you remind me of myself Purple, I love emotional reads which totally wreck you, I really hope you do end up enjoying this when you pick it up :)

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  4. I'm glad to hear you enjoyed this book, Jasprit. I really liked the writing in the book, but I couldn't connect with the characters unfortunately, mostly because I told myself I wouldn't since the book is so sad. I do need to check out the author's Unearthly series for sure though.
    Lovely review, Jasprit!

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    1. I'm sorry you weren't able to connect with the characters as much Nick, if you enjoyed Hand's writing in this one I definitely recommend picking up her Unearthly series, it is one of my all time favourite series! :)

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  5. Sometimes, when a good contemporary comes along, they just work (like you, I've been more fantasy-focused...and still am so it's hard to switch over. I keep expecting at least *something* magical/otherworldly to happen and it just doesn't). This one's on my shelf but I don't think I'm ready for a serious contemp yet.

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    1. I know what you mean Mary, I go through phases where I can only read one genre, I am trying to mix it up a bit more, but sometimes I just need to be in the right mood before picking something up :(

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  6. Gorgeous review Jasprit. <3 I am so glad that you enjoyed this book so much :D I'm curious about it, as it looks so beautiful, hih. <3 It sounds awesome. And you make it sound even better :) I'm still a bit unsure about this genre, though, sigh :\ but hoping to read this one one day. <3 Thank you for sharing about it sweetie :)

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    1. You're so welcome Carina, I really do hope you end up enjoying this one if you decide to give it a go!

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  7. I'm going to read this book on my flight home. Let's hope I won't embarrass myself by ugly crying in public. Lol.

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  8. I haven't read anything by this author, but I do love books that deal with the subject of suicide and it sounds like this is a good one. Must read it!

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  9. Hmm, I have heard mixed reviews about this book, but I do want to check it out for myself though - I'm glad that you liked it though. Fantastic review !

    <3 Benish | Feminist Reflections

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  10. Wonderful review, Jasprit! I haven’t read Unearthly series yet. I’m so behind everyone… It seems like The Last Time We Say Goodbye is a beautiful and heartbreaking story. I’m going to read it when I’m ready to deal with such a tough topic.

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  11. "I didn’t have a hard time with connecting with the characters at all, but I think it may be because I’d been on a fantasy kick and so coming back to a contemporary read dealing with a really serious issue took some time adjusting to."

    This is absolutely me right now too Jasprit! I'm definitely in a paranormal/fantasy place at the moment, so I think I would struggle a touch settling into this one too. Plus, books dealing with loss are always hard for me. Too close to reality I think! I'm so glad you loved this though:):)

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