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Review & ARC Giveaway (US/Canada) of THE INFINITE MOMENT OF US by Lauren Myracle
Jul 29th, 2013 by Liza Wiemer

THE INFINITE MOMENT OF US157676

by Lauren Myracle

Pub. date: August 20, 2013

Publisher Amulet Books, pages: 336

From Goodreads:

For as long as she can remember, Wren Gray’s goal has been to please her parents. But as high school graduation nears, so does an uncomfortable realization: Pleasing her parents once overlapped with pleasing herself, but now… not so much. Wren needs to honor her own desires, but how can she if she doesn’t even know what they are?

Charlie Parker, on the other hand, is painfully aware of his heart’s desire. A gentle boy with a troubled past, Charlie has loved Wren since the day he first saw her. But a girl like Wren would never fall for a guy like Charlie—at least not the sort of guy Charlie believes himself to be.

And yet certain things are written in the stars. And in the summer after high school, Wren and Charlie’s souls will collide. But souls are complicated, as are the bodies that house them…

Sexy, romantic, and oh-so-true to life, this is an unforgettable look at first love from one of young adult fiction’s greatest writers.

 My review:

TIMofUThe intensity of love, finding your soulmate and fumbling through that deep connection.

This is a novel about the confusion of what it takes to get to know a person whom you not only find attractive, but touches your soul. Trust, faith, true love, sex. A forever relationship.

THE INFINITE MOMENT OF US was a strong story from the perspective of what it takes to fumble in a relationship and to forge the bonds emotionally, spiritually, mentally, and physically. In order to forge those bonds to have a forever relationship, it takes a lot of work!!!!!!!! (Forever is my term. There is no promise of that, but I think it’s implied that this is what Wren and Charlie are trying to build/create with one another.)

There is a tremendous amount of value to this novel for both girls and boys who feel unsure of their connection with a person that they love. When do you take the next step? How do you know you’re ready? What does it mean to be soulmates? Do you believe in soulmates? (For the record, I absolutely do!)

Strengths of this novel:
1. The way Wren and Charlie communicate with each other. It’s not perfect, they make mistakes, but I think it’s authentic and a lot of YA can learn from them.
2. Wren’s overpowering parents and her incredible determination to step out of their shadow.
3. Charlie’s “unique” family.
4. Learning to accept a person’s strengths and weaknesses and to be honest about your own.
5. The beauty of the soul, the beauty of the body – one that shouldn’t be “shared” lightly. Sex is a very powerful connector. It also can be very damaging and unhealthy. I think the distinction is made very clear in this novel.
6. Charlie’s brother is an amazing person.
7. The tough decisions Wren has to make about her future.
8. Charlie finally realizes that he deserves true love in his life. It’s an important message.
9. Relationships–soulmates, family, friendships–can be messy. But with true love/ a soulmate, one can overcome a tremendous amount of pain and difficulty.
10. I admire that Wren asked Charlie to go get tested before they took the next step in their relationship. And that she took responsibility for the birth control.

In my opinion, THE INFINITE MOMENT OF US is a healthy novel that will help many YA who don’t have anyone to discuss finding a soulmate, true love, the mechanics of sex etc. It’s only one perspective. Could it have be done differently? Sure, and it has. There are many amazing books about true love and soulmates and sex with a different storyline. (Some of the best, in my opinion, are EASY by Tammara Webber, PERFECT CHEMISTRY by Simone Elkeles, MY LIFE NEXT DOOR by HUNTLEY FITZPATRICK, and Katie McGarry’s novels PUSHING THE LIMITS and DARE YOU TO, and IF I STAY, WHERE SHE WENT, and JUST ONE DAY by Gayle Forman. There’s also Susane Colasati’s ALL I NEED or STAY by Deb Caletti.)

The point is, THE INFINITE MOMENT OF US is its own story and will speak to YA. But it’s not for everyone and that’s okay. There’s more to gain than to lose and if it makes people uncomfortable, I think it’s good that it evokes healthy discussion about relationships and sexuality, with or without reading the novel. I hope parents will take notice and discuss love, sex, soulmates, relationships in a positive, less clinical way that is often heard in sex-ed classes. You don’t have to read this novel. That’s the beauty of living in America and free speech.

I have a feeling that this novel will make some adults very uncomfortable, a lot more uncomfortable than teens. That’s too bad. I hope adults will read it. After that, if they’re not comfortable having their child read it, then talk with their YA about the issues that come up in this book: true love, soulmates, sexuality. Sadly, I expect, like Myracle’s other novel SHINE, there will be people who will want to ban it. Go for it. Teens will want it more than ever. Thank G-d I live in America!!!!

To learn more about Lauren Myracle, check out here website.

I WAS DEEPLY TOUCHED by Lauren Myracle’s response to this review:

For “Leave a Blog Post Comment” below in the RAFFLECOPTER – What characters from a novel do you feel are soulmates? You only need to leave one. I could name so many, but here are a few of my favorites: Lucas and Jacqueline from EASY by Tammara Webber and Nastya and Josh in THE SEA OF TRANQUILITY by Katja Millay. a Rafflecopter giveaway

An Open Letter to YA Author Lauren Myracle Regarding the NBA Fiasco
Oct 17th, 2011 by Liza Wiemer

An Open Letter to Lauren Myracle:

Shine, By Lauren Myracle

I have never met you, but I am a member of what I would call a family of YA lit bloggers, enthusiasts, and writers. What happened to you regarding the National Book Award fiasco must have been personally frustrating, painful, perhaps even devastating. I can only imagine the roller coaster of emotions you must have gone through once told that Shine had been nominated in the Young People’s Literature category, and then having it recanted, announced to the world that it was a mistake, a slip-up of the letter, “C” for “S” and an “n” for an “m” that it was Chime by Franny Billingsley, which was the novel that was actually nominated for this award.

And then you were asked to do something really tough – withdraw your book from the nomination. Once again, I can only imagine how this request squeezed your heart, left you reeling.

But somehow you did it. You found the inner strength to set aside what I envision to be tremendous disappointment and you withdrew Shine from the NBA. You did it with incredible dignity. (Readers, if you haven’t read the statement, here is a link to the Publisher’s Weekly article: http://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/childrens/childrens-industry-news/article/49143-shine-withdrawn-as-nba-young-people–s-literature-nominee.html) More information can be obtained through the Huffington Post Article: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/17/lauren-myracle-withdraws-national-book-awards_n_1015649.html

I want to thank you, Lauren. Because your behavior, your response to this unimaginable experience was totally first class. Despite the turmoil, you didn’t sling mud or have a public fit. You show others what it means to handle tremendous disappointment and personal pain with respect and grace. In turn, you also have bolstered the message of Shine. Bullying of any kind is unacceptable.

I understand people are outraged for you. I too am outraged. But setting that aside I want you to know how much I deeply admire you and respect you for being a role model. We get more than enough of the opposite every day – so much so that some have lost all sense of boundaries and will say anything and everything to others and justify being rude and disrespectful and abusive because whatever happened justifies their reaction. Personally, it’s cool to be classy. It’s cool to have dignity. It’s cool to write a book that is so powerful and important that it can change the way people act and react toward others. It’s uncool to bully. It’s uncool to call others names.

You have shown through your actions how to take a major disappointment and use it to make a difference in other peoples’ lives. In your time of distress you thought about the young adults who could benefit, asking NBA to make a donation to the Matthew Shepard Foundation (http://www.matthewshepard.org/), which works tirelessly to “replace the hate in this world with understanding, compassion, and acceptance.”

I wish you tremendous success, Lauren. And encourage everyone to go out and support you by purchasing and/or reading your novels.

To learn more about Lauren Myracle her is a link to her website: http://www.laurenmyracle.com/ Readers can find a list of all her books on Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/157676.Lauren_Myracle?origin For a synopsis of Shine here is the direct link to the Goodreads page: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/8928054-shine

 

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