Maybe One Day by Melissa Kantor | Book Review

Maybe One Day by Melissa Kantor | Book ReviewMaybe One Day by Melissa Kantor
Published by HarperTeen on February 18, 2014
Genres: Contemporary YA
Also by this author: The Darlings Are Forever
Format: ARC
Source: For Review
Amazon/Twitter
Goodreads

I received this book for review consideration from the publisher. This in no way swayed my opinion of the book. Pinky swear!

three-half-stars

 

 

 

book synopsis Zoe and Olivia have been best friends since they can remember — they do everything together, they danced together, they planned for the future together. Then Olivia is diagnosed with leukemia and everything is so uncertain. Zoe tries her best to be there for Olivia and treat her normally as she continues to get treatment, misses school and seem to continually get weaker but it becomes hard for her with how everything changes and how she is supposed to continue living in a forward motion when things with Olivia are so uncertain.

good books to readOverall I rather liked this one and constantly couldn’t wait to pick it back up…but I don’t think it made the overall kind of impact to make it stand out for me that I thought it would be and there were some little things that irked me. But overall my feelings are more positive than negative — there was just some sort of disconnect there that is hard to explain. It just wasn’t all the way there for me.

Despite the premise which is an emotional topic — a young girl’s best friend being diagnosed with leukemia – it took me a little bit to get emotionally invested (I was invested in the story but not yet emotionally) but when I DID…WOW. I was a hot mess and just weeping by the end. Melissa Kantor got me SO invested in the friendship of these girls that I just felt everything along with them. I loved learning about their friendship and all its facets — how they met, how dance was this huge bonding thing for them and just all the things that best friends did and talked about it. It reminded me a lot of my best friend from middle school and I — being constant figures at one another’s houses and planning how we would do this and that together as grownups. I had some serious friendship nostalgia with this one.

I think that is really where this book shined for me — the friendship. It was complex and it wasn’t always perfect but they had such a strong foundation and really had such love for each other. I’ve read The Darlings Are Forever by Melissa Kantor and I think she really is just very talented in creating great stories of friendship that feel authentic and easy to relate to. Knowing the back story and FEELING the magnitude of their friendship made me invested in them going through this together and I appreciated that Zoe, who is definitely not always perfect and doesn’t always know how to deal with this, loved and supported Olivia in the best way she knew how — visiting her, acting normal towards her, teaching the dance class for her, etc. I felt it was realistic to how a teenage girl would react in this situation.

I know a lot of other people didn’t like Zoe but I really came to like her. She was doing the best she could in these uncharted waters. Having been a teenager when my mom was diagnosed with cancer, I know how you are consumed with it but at the same time, in grappling with it, you also very much are consumed with the other parts of life going on around you — boys, other friendships, things at school, etc. I felt Zoe was very real in this balance in trying to keep LIVING life but dealing with this situation with Olivia and I loved the secondary characters who added to all this. I know that it’s hard to swallow how things happen with Zoe and Olivia’s sort of crush but that didn’t bother me so much because she’s a flawed human being and we don’t always go about things they right way. I could feel her struggle with the whole situation and so it didn’t make me dislike Zoe and I REALLY loved Calvin (and wanted more of them maybe?)

Even though I grew to like Zoe, I think she was a bit of my disconnect alone.  Zoe’s relationship with dancing was a huge thing — something that was her whole life, along with Olivia, and she’s just never really been able to find what it is that makes her tick after she’s cut from dance. It derails her and how she became after made it hard to connect to her at first. She literally doesn’t have anything, besides Olivia, anymore. She’s disinterested in everything, and mostly everyone, because her plans don’t turn out how she thought they would and just stops living so she just kind of was a flat character for me until I got further in the story. She focuses on dealing with Olivia’s illness and being there for her and I saw glimpses of Zoe becoming interested in life again but I wish I would have seen more growth in her with really FINDING herself again because I might have not felt that disconnect.

“Time does not care how precious it is, how hard you are working not to squander it. Time passes.” — Maybe One Day

 

book reviewsIf you are looking for a good book about friendship that is emotional and heartbreaking but gives you the warm and fuzzies thinking about your best friend (or former partner in crime from your childhood like I thought of), Maybe One Day by Melissa Kantor is a very solid book. I think I’ve read more hard hitting books with similar subjects that had a bit more depth and a bigger impact but, overall, I feel very positively towards it besides some random things and some disconnect with Zoe herself — apart from who she was as Zoe & Olivia.

short book reviewmaybe-one-day-melissa-kantor

books you may also likeThe Darlings Are Forever by Melissa Kantor (more so if you liked the friendship side of this book), Before I Die by Jenny Downham, Second Chance Summer by Morgan Matson, The F-It list by Julie Halpern

for-fans-of-bookcontemporary YA dealing strongly with friendship, books dealing with cancer, books with main characters who are into ballet

Let’s Talk: Have you read this one? Heard of it? What did you think if you have read it? Did you like it less/more than me? Did anyone else feel a weird disconnect in ways? I attributed it to Zoe herself and feeling like I didn’t really KNOW her apart from her being Zoe & Oliva. What was it for you if you felt this? Did anyone else bawl?? Whew. I couldn’t stop.
The Perpetual Page-Turner

 

three-half-stars

Review: The Darlings Are Forever by Melissa Kantor

Book Title/Author: The Darlings Are  Forever by Melissa Kantor
Publisher/Year
: Hyperion 2011
Genre: YA Contemporary
Series: Yes — The Darlings In Love
Other Books From Author: If I Have A Wicked Stepmother, Where Is My Prince?, The Breakup Bible, The Amanda  Project, Girlfriend Material, Confessions of a Not It Girl

Amazon| Goodreads | Melissa Katnor’s Website |

I checked this out from my wonderful library. LIBRARIES ARE COOL, y’all!

 

 

Jane, Victoria and Natalya have always be best friends — they do everything together and have been through everything together. They’ve always had one another by their side through the years at their tiny private school so the girls are nervous as they begin 9th grade at different high schools without each other in Manhattan. They vow to still be as close as they’ve always been and not grow apart but as they begin to navigate their new lives they struggle with balancing their friendships plus all the new things life has thrown at them. Jane feels the pressure of trying to land a leading role at her performing arts high school and figure out a crush she shouldn’t have.  Natalya lands herself a spot at an extremely prestigious school with some of the wealthiest families but she tries to fit in with the popular girls without letting on that she’s a scholarship student and not actually rich. Victoria tries to blend in at her new private school — which is hard to do with her dad running for office & her sister’s legacy at school. As the girls navigate boys, peer pressure, fitting in and making friends, they realize trying to keep the closeness of the Darlings in tact is harder than they realized.

I don’t know about you all but sometimes I just wander the library and pick up something I’ve never heard of and give it a try. I picked this one up on a whim, thought it sounded fun and cute and checked this baby out! What a pleasant surprise this was! It was very reminiscent of The Sisterhood of The Traveling pants in that it was a very friendship oriented book (YAY!) with romance and general high school pressures weaved in. It was cute and fun and not really over the top — lots of realistic situations and a little bit of drama (especially with a dad who is in the political spotlight and one of them who is falling for a teacher sort of figure — I’ve totally had a crush on a younger teacher in high school. LISTEN, his ass looked mighty fine in those Banana Republic pants he wore). I can’t say it was particularly a standout or a favorite but it satisfied my need for something fun and light as I’d been reading lots of darker type stuff that weighed heavy on my mind.

It definitely was a bit of a younger novel being that they are starting out their 9th grade year so I’d keep that in mind for you older readers. However, I really enjoyed reading about each of the girl’s transitions into their new high school lives and the issues they faced. I really loved their friendship and rooted for them to stop taking each other forgranted and figure out how to balance their friendship and their new friends and love interests. To be honest, I really enjoyed watching them grow on their own and have to be courageous and bold without one another. I really loved Victoria’s storyline the most I think — but a lot of that was how sweet her romance was!

I had mentioned how this book made me want to find a close-knit group of girlfriends and it’s true — the loveliness of their friendship and how they worked through all the changes in their lives made me want to go all “GIRL POWER”! Speaking as a girl who has had a hard time keeping relationships with my gal pals, it was such a wonderful story to read as they come to terms with their changing lives and try to find out where their former besties still fit in. Such a relatable plot! And I LOVED how the girls were always trying to reach out and do things that they were afraid of doing and I feel like that’s such a good message no matter what age you are! It’s easy to let fear take over and continue to do the same things because you feel complacent. They had a motto they said but I can’t recall what it was and unfortunately the book is back at the library!

 

 

The Darlings Are Forever was such a fun book about friendship, growing up and living boldly despite how much things scare you. Definitely a great book if you love books about enduring friendships between a VERY close group of young girls — a la Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants. I loved the ups and downs of the girl’s life in New York City as they try to navigate through their new high schools without each other while they face many normal pressures! A pinch of drama, some cute romances and a big feeling of girl power made this such a fun read!  It felt a little young to me at times, being that I AM 27 years old, but it was still totally fun and I would think that younger readers of YA would LOVE this one especially! Won’t say it was a favorite but it was the kind of fun, light read I needed! Definitely recommend to younger YA readers!

 

For Fans Of: The Sisterhood of the Traveling pants-esque stories, books about friendship, cute & fun reads with not too much angst

The Darlings series Melissa Katnor

 

Let’s Talk: Have you read this one? Heard of it? Which girl did you like to follow the most? Did YOU have a close knit group of girl friends/or do you still? Any other good friendship type books you’ve read and enjoyed?

three-stars
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