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?
I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review.
Have you been looking for a non-dramatic (but yes, I did shed some tears–emotional teenage girl right here) YA contemporary that’ll make your face hurt from too much smiling? If you: a) nodded your head, b) screamed FUCK YES, c) gasped or d) did all of the above, then Emmy & Oliver is going to be your next favorite read!
To be honest with you, I initially thought that this book was going to be full of drama llamas and “lyrical” writing (y’all know I hate those), and I’ve never been happier to have been proven wrong.
Right off the bat, we’re introduced to Emmy and her best friends. The bond between this group is so strong that you could feel how genuine it was right from the first chapter. What I especially love about them is that they have their ups and downs (there’s this very realistic fight that happens somewhere towards the end of the book), but they still remain friends through thick and thin.
Now, their group hasn’t been complete since Oliver was “kidnapped” by his father. You might expect their reunion to have been one of the cheesy ones with big hugs and/or tears of joy, but it was so awkward and realistic and I just loved it.
Robin Benway did a brilliant job depicting an honest teenager and her relationships with friends, family and lover. I really found myself empathizing with Emmy and was mentally giving her two thumbs up every time she did something I knew I would do myself.
Plus hello, awesome romance! I may have been expecting some instalove since Emmy and Oliver already knew each other as children, but the romance was slow-burn and went through a lot of development. You’re going to love watching their relationship turn from awkward acquaintances, to friends, and then to something more.
Despite me making it sound like it’s a light book–it’s not. I can say this is a calm contemporary, but it isn’t a light one. The characters (Oliver especially) have their own demons to face. Some scenes were heartbreaking and my throat closed up at some point because of all the crying I did. Luckily, they all have their friends and family (which was another strong point of the book) to support them and to be there for them.
I highly recommend Emmy & Oliver to any young adult contemporary fan, or just anyone who’s looking for a quick read with swoons, joy and tears.
Rating Report Plot Characters Writing Pacing Romance Impact Overall: 4.5