Sunday, 10 June 2012

BLOGTOUR: Saving June by Hannah Harrington + Q & A

Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Mira Ink (1 Jun 2012)
  • Language English
  • ISBN-10: 1848450958
  • ISBN-13: 978-1848450950
‘If she’d waited less than two weeks, she’d be June who died in June. But I guess my sister didn’t consider that.’

Harper Scott’s older sister has always been the perfect one so when June takes her own life a week before her high school graduation, sixteen-year-old Harper is devastated. Everyone’s sorry, but no one can explain why.

When her divorcing parents decide to split her sister’s ashes into his-and-her urns, Harper takes matters into her own hands. She’ll steal the ashes and drive cross-country with her best friend, Laney, to the one place June always dreamed of going, California.

Enter Jake Tolan. He’s a boy with a bad attitude, a classic-rock obsession and nothing in common with Harper’s sister. But Jake had a connection with June, and when he insists on joining them, Harper’s just desperate enough to let him. With his alternately charming and infuriating demeanour and his belief that music can see you through anything, he might be exactly what she needs.

Except June wasn’t the only one hiding something. Jake’s keeping a secret that has the power to turn Harper’s life upside down again.

Cover:  I'm not overly fond of this cover, preferring the US cover.  If I went into the bookstore this cover wouldn't jump out at me as something I'd want to pick up which is a shame because the book itself is awesome.

I loved this book- definitely an emotional read.  We start out at June's wake, where we see Harper's family has fallen apart and no one saw June's suicide coming as she was always considered the 'perfect sister'.  But Harper realises she needs to do one thing for June- needs to take her ashes to California where she always wanted to go but her parents wouldn't let her.  
Sometimes Harper can be a difficult character to like as she can border on the cruel but you see where this stems from- Harper believes she's always been written off by her parents, that she can't compare to June's perfection.
The emotion in this book always feels real.
There is a romance element to the book but it doesn't develop until well into the book and is in no way the focus.  And I loved Harper and Jake's love/hate relationship.
Hannah Harrington takes you on an emotional roadtrip along with Harper, you really feel Harper's anger, confusion and guilt-  at her family, June and herself.
Music is an important theme in this book.  The musician Jake has a passion for music and I found myself pausing and looking up the music he was playing at the time.  This really set the tone and mood of the characters at the time and really helped make you feel as if you were there with them.
The end really surprised me.  There's no really H.E.A. but an acknowledgement that in life there's pain but instead of running from it, you know you're alive and when I thought about it I thought this was a great way to end the book.  It doesn't contradict the rest of the book but you still feel there's a future for Harper and Jake.
4/5 stars.  I definitely recommend this for contemporary YA fans, especially for John Green fans, as the emotions this book provokes reminded me strongly of how I felt when reading The Fault In Our Stars.

Q & A with Hannah Harrington

Erin:    What is your ideal road trip?

Hannah: A few of my closest friends, a nice car, summer weather, and maybe a drive out to the east coast since there are some states there I haven’t been to that I would love to see!

Erin:  If you could collaborate with anyone who would it be and why?

Hannah: There are a ton of writers I deeply admire! But I’d say Fran Lebowitz. I love how her brain works.

Erin:  Do you have any writing quirks or routines?

Hannah: Not really! I do usually have a music playlist set up to get me in the mood.

Erin: What do you think most appeals to readers?

Hannah: Honesty. Regardless of genre, I think readers want to be able to connect to characters and see parts of themselves in those characters, and to do that you have to write characters with emotional honesty so they feel real.

Erin:   What was your favorite book when you were a child/teen?

Hannah: I had so, so many favorites growing up. The first that comes to mind as a favorite is The Giver by Lois Lowry.

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