"As children, they had dozens of names for the beach... A placid, white-sand and sparkly turquoise affair was a Tortula beach... The Rily beach, also known as Fight beach, was when the little grains of sand whipped like glass against your skin and the surf was ragged and punishing. An Alice beach was truly rare, and it involved tide pools." ~pg 10, The Last Summer (of You & Me) by Ann Brashares.
I walked out my door this morning into a "Wales day". You see, I sometimes like to name my days according to the places I've been and of what they remind me, rather like how the characters in Ann Brashares' book named beaches. To me, a "Wales day" is one that has a slight chill in the air, is overcast, and if it is slightly misty, all the better. Despite the unpleasant sound of that, I really do love these days. Bring on the hiraeth! Of course, then there are "France days", which can also be slightly chilly, but are blindingly bright in the early morning hours. These bring to mind the days I spent studying abroad in France during high school and my early morning walks to the bus stop. Each of these days are rare, so I'm always overjoyed to find one when I step out of my apartment.
This was actually the first book by Ann Brashares I have ever read. I know! I know! Horrible me for not reading her Travelling Pants series. And I did find some bits of it to be overwhelmingly "Danielle Steele-esque repetative" (especially Paul's emotional musings over Alice), I did, overall, enjoy the book. It only took a couple chapters to realize that it really would be the last summer for one of the characters (ooo, gone all totally A Summer to Die on you, haven't I?).
Out of the three characters, I think I related most to Riley, and, of course, she was the least well representative of the "voices" Brashares used in this book. But there are times, as I'm sure comes to most everyone, that I don't feel that I quite fit into this world as well as most people, and perhaps it would be better if I were to die young (and not just because of how good I am, thank you Billy Joel). Which, I know, makes no sense. That and the fact that my heart and I have a love-hate relationship starting from the time that I had to get an EKG (because I have a heart mummer), which still gives me an "ick" feeling whenever I think about it, to the time that I woke up and was completely convinced that my heart was not beating. I could not feel a think, and not for lack of trying. (I then decided that God had given me a few moments to find my parents to say goodbye to them, and I couldn't find them. Which meant I stumbled back to my bed and collapsed in a cold sweat, and then passed out-not pretty, I assure you). But, if it all comes down to it and I had the choice Riley had, I think I would chose to end it how she did
So as far as being "emotional" when reading this book, I didn't really go there like Julie did. But, then again, I only show emotions when I watch cheesy Hilary Duff films like Raise Your Voice (I admit, when her brother died at the beginning, I was completely balling my eyes out because I was thinking what would I do if my brother died and I was all to blame). But don't tell anyone I said that! There were some times, however, when I didn't think I was going to be able to finish this book, because I hate the talk of medical things, it makes me go faint. Perhaps that was why I never got into those Lurlene McDaniel books that were so popular when I was growing up.
Gosh, I am really bad at trying to review books. I should give up!