Emmy & Oliver
by Robin Benway
Published on June 23rd 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult
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Also by this author: Emmy & Oliver
Emmy’s best friend, Oliver, reappears after being kidnapped by his father ten years ago. Emmy hopes to pick up their relationship right where it left off. Are they destined to be together? Or has fate irreparably driven them apart?Emmy just wants to be in charge of her own life.She wants to stay out late, surf her favorite beach—go anywhere without her parents’ relentless worrying. But Emmy’s parents can’t seem to let her grow up—not since the day Oliver disappeared.Oliver needs a moment to figure out his heart.He’d thought, all these years, that his dad was the good guy. He never knew that it was his father who kidnapped him and kept him on the run. Discovering it, and finding himself returned to his old hometown, all at once, has his heart racing and his thoughts swirling.Emmy and Oliver were going to be best friends forever, or maybe even more, before their futures were ripped apart. In Emmy’s soul, despite the space and time between them, their connection has never been severed. But is their story still written in the stars? Or are their hearts like the pieces of two different puzzles—impossible to fit together?Readers who love Sarah Dessen will tear through these pages with hearts in throats as Emmy and Oliver struggle to face the messy, confusing consequences of Oliver’s father’s crime. Full of romance, coming-of-age emotion, and heartache, these two equally compelling characters create an unforgettable story.
This book was honestly so cute. I wasn’t sure how I would feel about it because I am not a huge fan of contemporary. It did start out a little slow for me and it took me awhile to get in to it, but once I did I could not put it down. Emmy and Oliver are best friends who live right next to each other until one day Oliver’s dad kidnaps him. Sending not only Oliver’s mother in to panic but Emmy’s parents as well. It’s not until Oliver comes home that Emmy begins to pay attention to the freedom she’s missing out on. While Oliver struggles to love the one person he thought abandoned him and hate the one who took him. This book is told from Emmy’s perspective and while I thought it was really well done I think it would have been interesting to see inside Oliver’s mind. He was dealing with so much that I wanted to know what he thought about everything. He was told he had to love the mother he thought abandoned him and hate the father who loved and raised him. It would have been very interesting to see inside his mind.
This story is written in present day with flashbacks of Emmy and Oliver as children. We watch as Emmy grows up without her best friend and how she copes with losing him and getting him back. I love the relationship between Oliver and Emmy. It didn’t feel forced and I liked that they worked their way back in to being friends before anything happened. Emmy had been in love with Oliver for so long that she wasn’t sure what to expect when she got the news that he was coming home. And what would happen if he wasn’t anything like the boy she remember or she couldn’t recognize him. Their relationship was one of the best parts of the book. I was rooting for them. I loved that they had a secret code and that Oliver trusted Emmy above all else with his secrets and she trusted him with hers.
I loved Emmy. She was awkward if you didn’t know her but once you did you could see how funny she was. After losing Oliver her parents become more and more overbearing. At times I could sympathize with Emmy’s parents, but for the most part I knew that Emmy just needed the freedom to roam. I love that she got that freedom. Caroline and Drew are Emmy’s best friends and they were the type of friends I wish I had in high school. They had each others backs and they weren’t afraid to tell it like it is but they loved each other just the same. It was hard not to fall in love with every character in this book. They were just so different and amazing and I can’t say enough how much of a fan I am of Robin’s. She knows how to write hope and love, along with fear and tragedy. This wasn’t a sad book by any means. This was a book based on growing up. Learning that you can’t always protect those you love, but that there are always going to be people to lean on. I think that’s what I loved so much about this book. Yes it is a very hard subject to write about but I thought that Robin did such a lovely job writing it. The main focus of this story isn’t the kidnapping itself but the events after and how each person involved is changed in someway.
Reading this story I couldn’t find it in me to hate his dad. I know I probably should have but I just couldn’t. The way Oliver describes his dad is so heartbreaking. Here is this man that he trusted and he later learns that everything he thought to be true is a lie. It’s a very hard topic to discuss let alone cope with. And watching Oliver grow and open up to the people closest to him was so amazing. It was beautifully written. This is the first book I have read by Robin but I absolutely am a fan. I gave this book 5 stars. I think that if you haven’t or weren’t going to, you should most certainly pick up this book. It is filled with hope and love. It wasn’t something I expected but in the best way possible. Well done to Robin for this beautifully told story! I can’t wait to see what else she has in store for us.