{ARC Review} What Remains by Helene Dunbar

Posted May 5, 2015 by Bee in Reviews / 8 Comments

{ARC Review} What Remains by Helene Dunbar

What Remains

by Helene Dunbar
Pages: 287
Published on May 8th 2015
by Flux
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley

In less than a second…

… two of the things Cal Ryan cares most about—a promising baseball career and 
Lizzie, one of his best friends—are gone forever.

In the hours that follow…

…Cal’s damaged heart is replaced. But his life will never be the same.

Everyone expects him to pick up the pieces and move on.

But Lizzie is gone, and all that remains for Cal is an overwhelming sense that her death was his fault. 
And a voice in his head that just…won’t…stop.

Cal thought he and his friends could overcome any obstacle. But grief might be the one exception.

4 Stars

You know that feeling when a book didn’t blow your mind but you loved it nonetheless? That’s what I have now. What Remains didn’t blow my mind, it was nothing really new or original, but I still loved it quite a bit.

What Remains is about Cal. For as long as he remembers he’s been friends with Spencer and Lizzie. He figures that won’t change anytime soon. Until one day they get in a car accident. Suddenly Cal’s life is changed forever. He has a new heart and he’s lost his promising future in baseball and his best friend Lizzie. As if that’s not enough, he starts hearing a familiar voice in his head and starts dreaming someone else’s dreams. Cal always thought there was nothing he and his friends couldn’t overcome, but all of this may be the the only exception.

You’d expect this book to be very heartbreaking. I mean, read that blurb! And in a way it did break my heart, but it didn’t make me cry rivers or anything like that. There was a really good balance between the grief and the happy moments. For every sad moment there was one that made me smile. And I liked that! I really did. This book may not be super original, but it’s still very good. I really couldn’t put it down. It didn’t let me go from the moment I read the first sentence. And that’s not a very easy thing to accomplish with me nowadays.

The romance is very nicely done. It doesn’t take over the story at all. I think it was just about perfect. It’s very sweet and there are a few swoony moments, but it didn’t take anything away from the main story. At one point though, this book could’ve taken an entirely different road and I would’ve loved to see that one explored, but the author didn’t take that route and I’m fine with that. It’s a bit of a shame though because that would’ve been pretty original and interesting. Not that there’s anything wrong with how the story ultimately went, I just think it would’ve been less predictable.

I really liked the characters in this book. Spencer was such a sweet guy and a great friend. He’s there for Cal to support him and I really loved him! Lizzie was cool and I really did like her even though she wasn’t in the story as much as I wanted her to be. I liked Ally, she was very sweet. I would’ve liked to see more of Cal’s parents though. I feel like they needed more time too. And then Cal. I really, really loved him. I felt for him and I understood his feelings and what he was going through. I rooted for him the whole time.

In the end What Remains may not be anything spectacular, it was still very good. I was very satisfied reading this book and I recommend it to fans of contemporary because it touches on a tough subject in a way that doesn’t make this book overly emotional and hard to read. It’s a good book to read in one sitting with cuddled up under a warm blanket or outside on a nice warm afternoon.


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8 responses to “{ARC Review} What Remains by Helene Dunbar

  1. Cali W.

    Good review. This sounds like an interesting book you can read about where things suddenly change in your life.

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