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Wherever You Go

Wherever You Go

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Wherever You Go

valutazioni:
4.5/5 (11 valutazioni)
Lunghezza:
332 pagine
5 ore
Pubblicato:
Nov 15, 2011
ISBN:
9780547677675
Formato:
Libro

Descrizione

A poignant story about making peace with the past and opening your heart to love.Seventeen-year-old Holly Mullen has felt lost and lonely ever since her boyfriend, Rob, died in a tragic accident. But she has no idea that as she goes about her days, Rob’s ghost is watching over her. He isn’t happy when he sees his best friend, Jason, trying to get close to Holly—but as a ghost, he can do nothing to stop it. As their uncertain new relationship progresses, the past comes back to haunt Holly and Jason. Her Alzheimer’s-stricken grandfather claims to be communicating with the ghost of Rob. Could the messages he has for Holly be real? And if so, how can the loved ones Rob left behind help his tortured soul make it to the other side?
Pubblicato:
Nov 15, 2011
ISBN:
9780547677675
Formato:
Libro

Informazioni sull'autore

HEATHER DAVIS is the author of Never Cry Werewolf, Wherever You Go, and The Clearing, which was nominated for a RITA Award for Best Young Adult Romance. She lives in Seattle. Visit her website at www.heatherdavisbooks.com.

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Wherever You Go - Heather Davis

Ruth.

Chapter One

You've been by her side for six months, but she hasn't noticed you. Still, you slip into her mother's sixth-floor apartment and keep her company while she eats her kid sister's sugary cereal in the dark kitchen. And you're there with her as she gets books from her locker in Hallway C. Sometimes her gaze wanders to the picture of you taped below the vents. You're on her mind in the seconds before she slams the door shut.

You pacify yourself with the thought that all this is for a reason. That one day she'll sense your presence. Feel you watching over her. That she'll see you. Finally.

At this very moment, Holly sits on a bench beneath a sea of windows in the Downtown Seattle library—so close you could almost reach out and touch her, smell the sweet scent of her hair. You've been spending moments of this otherwise meandering afternoon watching her turn pages of the Toni Morrison book she's reading for school. It's almost like really being there. Almost like being together.

Underneath the chatter of two girls near the copy machine and the whirring hum of the escalator, you can hear the beating of her heart. It's as loud as if you were sitting on Holly's bed, holding her in your arms like you used to. Absently, she tucks a stray strand of her light brown bangs behind an ear and turns another page.

You wish your sense of touch was still active, so that you could run your fingers through her soft hair. If only. The closeness is maddening. You're so full of the desire to be seen, you must be freaking glowing. I'm here. You try to reach her with mental tricks, with all your powers of concentration, with all your love distilled into a single thought. See me.

Holly raises her head, and for an instant, just a nanosecond, your heart swells with hope. She glances around as if someone had called her name, but then the moment passes and she slips back into her page turning. You're alone, again.

It's bluish late afternoon outside as the spring rain begins to pound against the wall of windows. I'm here, you whisper into her ear again—even if she's not listening. I'm still here.

***

Holly, I brought home pizza, Mom called from the living room.

I closed the door behind me, grateful to be home out of the downpour. The bus ride had seemed longer that night, the damp passengers smelling like wet hair and wool, the warmth of a Northwest spring not helping matters at all.

I abandoned my backpack full of books beneath the hallway table. As I hung my jacket on the rack, a pink raincoat printed with dancing kitties fell to the floor. Typical of this place—there were too many coats and not enough pegs. I jammed the slicker back on the rack and followed the smell of dinner.

My family was sitting on the worn brown couch, eating from paper plates. Some tired sitcom was on, the laugh track blaring as the stupid dad character tripped over a bucket of paint.

I was going to make spaghetti tonight, I said.

Honey, take a night off. Enjoy the pizza. Mom gave me a tired smile as she abandoned a piece of doughy crust on her plate. She was wearing her uniform for the evening shift at the grocery store: a green polo shirt and khaki slacks. Her hair hung in a perfect ponytail, the kind my wavy hair never made.

It's my favorite—pepp-e-roni, chimed in my sister, Lena. She had red sauce smeared around her lips and a string of cheese draped on the front of her tee, which for her was pretty neat eating.

'Kay. Pizza's great, thanks, I said, plopping down onto the couch.

Mom sank back into the cushions as I took a slice from the greasy box and put it on a napkin. So, how are you? she asked. Everything go all right this afternoon?

Fine, I mumbled, biting into the pizza. The cheese was slightly cold and chewy, but it still tasted pretty good.

Hmm. Her lips pressed together, and I could tell she was thinking hard.

I set down my pizza and reached for a cola from the six-pack on the coffee table. I think I'm probably done with them. It's not—

What does the counselor say?

Right, the counselor—Dr. Martinson, or something like that. I could hardly remember the woman's name, since for over a month now I'd been going to the library on Tuesdays and Thursdays after school, instead of the community center. She doesn't really say anything, Mom. I cracked the cola open and took a big swig.

Well, counselors in those kinds of groups are more about listening. They're there to encourage you to talk about your grief, to let you get it all out.

It's out.

Mom's eyes were fixed on mine. What are you doing, quitting the group?

I didn't want to tell her the truth, so I just ignored her and chewed my slice.

That's a conversation for another day, I guess. Mom set her plate of crusts on the coffee table, and clicked mute on the TV remote.

Lena emitted a nine-year-old's growl. Hey! I was watching that.

I know, honey. I want to discuss something with you two.

Discuss was one of my mom's favorite words, but it really didn't mean discuss. We didn't discuss much of anything in this family. When Mom decided something, it happened.

I really want to watch my show. It's getting to the good part, Lena whined.

This will only take a moment, Mom said, patting my sister's dark hair. And this affects Holiday more than you.

Holiday. It was never good news when Mom used my whole name. I'd gone by Holly since I was in second grade and realized that holiday wasn't a normal name, it was a day off.

Mom, I told you I don't want to talk about the group.

This is not about that. She turned toward me, her eyes serious. Your Uncle Frank called me today. He's really worried about Grandpa Aldo. It's kind of sudden, but Frank and I think that, well, maybe Grandpa could come live with us for a while.

Lena smiled widely. He always gives me butterscotch candies.

What do you think? Mom was focused on me, waiting for my reaction.

But I was running through the scenario in my head. Lena and I were going to have to cram into one room if Grandpa Aldo moved in. Though it had three bedrooms, our apartment was on the small side: tiny living room, kitchen, one bath. It was going to feel smaller.

Holiday, he's alone in that apartment he moved to after Grandma died, and he's starting to need more help. He can't move down to Tacoma with Uncle Frank, because there's not enough room. And Grandpa's insurance isn't enough to pay for in-home care, and I can't... Mom's voice got really quiet. I can't put my father in a nursing home. We couldn't afford it, anyway.

I knew it was true that we didn't have the money, because I helped Mom write out the bills and balance her checkbook each month. We were barely making it as it was.

I don't get it, Lena said, chewing thoughtfully on a stray piece of pepperoni. Is he sick?

Yes, honey. He's starting to forget things. He can't live alone anymore. It's too dangerous.

Is he gonna get better? asked Lena.

No, baby. They don't think so.

I'm sorry. I put my arm around my mom. She seemed small, hunched there on the couch. Her lips were quivering like she was on the verge of losing it.

Don't cry, Mom. Lena patted Mom on the knee and then turned back toward the silent sitcom.

Mom sniffed loudly, trying to pull it all together. Geez, that was a downer. Sorry, girls. She sat up straighter on the couch and dabbed her eyes with a napkin. I'd be counting on you, she said, turning to me. With the hours I'm working, you'd be home with Lena and Grandpa a lot.

I shrugged. It wasn't like I could say no.

I know it's been hard for you lately, after Rob, Mom said. I wouldn't ask you to help with this if I had another choice.

Well, I'm sure we'll make it work. I put on a smile, for my mom's sake.

I hoped that's what you'd say. She stood up from the couch, brushing crumbs from her lap onto the rug, which needed to be vacuumed anyway. I've got to get going, kiddos. Lena, you be good.

My sister barely looked away from the muted TV, but she grunted in the affirmative. Mom brushed kisses across both our foreheads and then took off for work.

The so-called discussion was over, but I finished it in my head. Sure, Mom—I'll take it on. I'll take care of Aldo. I'll take care of Lena and you. Everything will be just fine.

Jason Markham couldn't help noticing her. Holly, with shiny, light brown hair and the brightest blue eyes he'd ever seen. Rob's Holly. He saw her across the chem lab from him every morning during second period. Noticed her eating lunch with her friend Marisa every day. Sometimes saw her catching the city bus after school was out, a faraway expression on her face. Several times, he'd meant to say something, had actually walked up to talk to her and then chickened out or had sensed her turning away as he approached. This was different from just talking to some random girl. What he wanted to say, what he had to say, was something hard. Something that had been tumbling around in his mind for months.

Now here she was, sitting on a metal bench at the park with an old guy in a gray cap and a little girl, who was moving the handles of her beat-up scooter, making the tassels swirl in the light breeze. Holly had her nose in a book, and the sun was making her squint. He wondered why she hadn't brought shades with her on such a sunny Saturday.

His buddy Mark Gentry elbowed him in the side. Don't blame you for staring, bro. She's still hot even if she—

Give the girl a break, Jason said, half under his breath. As they passed the bench, Holly raised her head. He saw a glimmer of recognition in her eyes, but it wasn't the right time to stop and talk. Not with Mark there and her with what seemed to be her family. He couldn't deny what Mark had pointed out, though. In the spring sunlight, Holly was as pretty as ever. Those blue eyes were piercing, like they could see right through him. And they probably did.

Dude, you okay? Mark gave a little laugh and elbowed him again.

Holly looked away, and suddenly Jason wanted to make sure she knew Mark wasn't laughing at her. But the damage was already done. She was frowning now, staring down at the book in her hands.

Yeah, I'm cool, Jason mumbled.

A few steps later, when he glanced back over his shoulder, Holly was still reading. The old guy stared off at the water in the distance, and the little girl rocked the scooter back and forth on the pavement, making a scritch-scratch sound of rocks imbedded in the cheap plastic wheels. They were all doing their own thing.

Mark shoved Jason in the shoulder, knocking him off the path. C'mon, man.

Later, shooting hoops on the basketball court at the end of the park, he couldn't get the image of Holly to leave his mind. He knew he owed her something more. They all did.

***

We made it home from the park slowly—with Lena insisting on riding her scooter and Grandpa Aldo inching along and murmuring about the birds singing. The park had been the best I could do for the biggest part of the day—even though it hadn't been the greatest outing. At this point, I was just glad we were home. Before she'd left for work at the dealership, Mom had promised she would try to find someone to cover her shift at the supermarket that night, but I wasn't holding my breath.

As we entered the lobby of the Hillwood Apartments, Grandpa Aldo put his hand on my arm. This is the wrong place, he said, his voice full of panic.

What? I said, a little startled, since it was the longest sentence my grandpa had said to me since he'd arrived. When Uncle Frank had helped move him in last night, Grandpa had been pretty quiet. He'd sat in the easy chair watching us carry in the boxes of his things and place his clothes and shoes in my former closet. It must have been weird for him, suddenly finding himself in a whole new environment.

The wrong place, he repeated. Uncle Frank had told me Grandpa would say random stuff sometimes, but this was the first weirdness I'd experienced.

No, Grandpa. You live here now with us. Remember?

A confused smile crinkled the corners of his mouth. This place? It's a dump.

Yeah, I said, smiling back. Thanks.

He hesitated at the open doors of the elevator, seeming unsure if he should go in.

This is the way up, Grandpa. I patted him on the arm.

Oh. All right.

We all climbed aboard. Standing atop her scooter, Lena stabbed at the button marked six. It took a moment to light up since, like everything in the building, the elevator was about ready to fall apart.

Finally the doors closed, but they opened back up quickly and Mrs. Anderson stepped onto the elevator, carrying two grocery bags. Sorry, girls, this contraption takes forever to come back down, she said with an exasperated sigh.

Can I push your button? asked Lena.

Sure.

Lena punched the number two and the door closed.

As we lurched upward, my grandpa reached out for the grocery bags. Please, let me help, he said in a soft voice.

Mrs. Anderson smiled politely. Oh, no, thank you, I'm fine.

It's okay, Grandpa, said Lena. She's got it.

He lowered his outstretched hands.

So, girls—this is your grandfather? asked Mrs. Anderson.

Yep. He's living with us, said Lena.

Hello, I'm Bitsy Anderson from 219. Smiling, she held out her hand. Nice to meet you.

Aldo stared at her for a moment and then reached out to shake. Aldo Santucci, he said, his voice a low rumble.

The elevator stopped at the second floor. Mrs. Anderson stepped off, but when she turned just before the doors closed, I caught a glimpse of worry in her eyes. I glanced over at Grandpa Aldo, who was staring at the lighted buttons of the panel. Everything's going to be fine, I told myself.

Upstairs, Mom was bustling around the kitchen, still dressed in her car dealership work clothes—office casual, she called it—a straight brown skirt and a white blouse with shell buttons. As much as she hated her job at the grocery store, the dealership was twice as bad. Answering the phone for the parts and service department all day made her cranky with us when she got home. Maybe it was being forced to be nice to people she couldn't see. Maybe it was the endless ringing of the incoming lines. Whatever it was, it made for a crappy transition between that and the night job.

Good, you're back, she said, lining up a bunch of medications on the counter. I realized we need to go over this again. There are a lot of pills.

I wrote it all down, I said. I know what to do when. I'm going to load those daily pill dispensers after dinner.

Grandpa stood in the doorway of the kitchen, a hand on the jamb to steady himself.

Come on in, Grandpa, I said. I'll get you some water.

Mom gave him a smile and turned back to me. On my lunch break I called over and set up the senior center for Monday. They have a special group for people like Grandpa, she said. They'll send a van to pick him up just before you get Lena on the bus. They can only keep him until three, so you'll have to come right home from school to meet him on weekdays.

Why are you telling just me, Mom? I gestured toward Grandpa Aldo, who was still standing in the doorway. Everything I'd read online at the library said that we had to keep talking to him, even if it seemed like he wasn't hearing or understanding. And so far, he was doing pretty okay. Well, except for being quiet and forgetting our building a few minutes ago.

I'm sorry, you're right. She walked over to Grandpa and took his hand. Papa, I have it all set up. Weekdays you'll go to the center and do some activities and get a hot lunch.

Sounds good, he said. I'll go lie down now. He turned and shuffled down the hallway, past Lena, who was balancing on her scooter on the hallway carpet, pretending to ride.

Thanks, honey. Mom reached out and hugged me tightly. She smelled like her floral perfume and the slightest hint of something industrial from the dealership. This is a big change for all of us.

Yeah.

Hey, babe, she said, releasing me and going over to hug Lena. So, was it a good day at the park?

There were boys there staring at Holly, said Lena. They looked at her like she was an alien.

I rolled my eyes. Whatever.

Mom frowned. Well, I was mostly asking about Grandpa. Holly?

He seems fine.

That seemed to satisfy her, and for a moment, the concern fell away from her face. Okay, she said, peering inside the fridge. Do we have any leftover pizza?

I was gonna make that spaghetti. Are you staying for dinner?

Yes, I found someone to take my shift at the store tonight.

Really?

Mom gave me a hard look. I told you I was going to try.

Yeah, but trying and doing are two different things, I wanted to say. Instead I went to the sink and loaded the stack of plates and cups into the dishwasher and then rinsed my hands.

Lena, put away your scooter, please, Mom said.

Whistling, my sister dutifully rolled her toy to our room down the hall. Mom took a seat at the kitchen table and sifted through a stack of mail that was likely all bills.

I could feel tension in the air, so I just started on the spaghetti. Cooking always relaxed me, gave me something to do that didn't involve talking or thinking about anything more than the task in front of me. I got out some frozen ground beef and pork sausage, which I stuck in the microwave to defrost.

Sorry, honey. You want me to do something? Mom asked, looking up from the mail.

Chop? I handed her a cutting board, a knife, and a big yellow onion.

While Mom started on that, I minced garlic and diced bell peppers over by the stove. When the oil in my pot was hot, I tossed in mom's onions and my veggies and let them start to cook. A few minutes later, when the microwave dinged, I took the meat out, put it in a big bowl, and mixed it with bread crumbs, eggs, and herbs and garlic for meatballs. I formed the little balls in my hands and laid them on a sheet pan one by one.

Mom brought the cutting boards to the sink. When did you get to be such a good cook?

Years of practice. I washed the boards and then my hands. The vegetables were all breaking down, so I crushed dried oregano and rosemary in my hand to release the flavors and added them to the pot. Instantly the aroma perfumed the air. Can you get the tomatoes, Mom?

Sure. She handed me two opened cans and I dumped them in, crushing the tomatoes with the back of my spoon.

Something smells like tomato gravy. Grandpa Aldo appeared in the doorway of the kitchen, delight on his face.

Holly's cooking dinner. My mom walked over to him and put a hand on his arm.

He reached out and touched her on the cheek. Julia, it smells like heaven.

Mom's eyes lit up at the sound of her name. Holly makes it like Mama showed her, with the baby meatballs simmering in the sauce.

Grandpa moved over to a chair, sitting so that he could see me at the stove. He stayed there until everything was ready, and Lena set the places at the table around him—a glass, a plate, a knife, a fork, a folded paper towel for the napkin.

There was something sweet about the smile on my grandfather's face as I set the bowl of pasta and meatballs on the table. It was the smile of recognition, or happiness or something. And it didn't leave him until after dinner was finished.

That was delicious, he said, wiping his mouth.

Yes, it was, huh? said Mom. I'm glad you're here, Papa.

The rest of the evening went pretty well. I mean, it actually seemed like everything was all right. Like Grandpa Aldo was going to be fine at our place. We could do this.

But then, when the apartment was dark and I was tucked into the lower bunk in the room I now shared with Lena, I heard crying. Next came Mom's footsteps and then her words of reassurance. Papa, it's okay. You're at my house. It's me, Julia.

And then there was more weeping and, at last, peace and the shutting of a door. Then a new sound—my mother pacing in the kitchen. And I knew nothing was right.

Chapter Two

You like to drop in on the guys sometimes. You circle the group on Mark's deck that overlooks Lake Washington, settle in on one of the cedar-plank benches and listen to them discuss girls, parties, basketball, and the start of waterskiing in a few short months. It's comforting to be with them, to hear the rattle of empties, the crinkling of a bag of chips passed around. To see them checking their phones, pretending they don't care if the girls they're crushing on text them or not.

There are only two of them tonight. Jason, your very best friend on the planet, and Mark, who is a pretty good guy most of the time. You met them both on the first day of kindergarten when Mark tipped over your green tempera paint on purpose and, without a word, Jason tried to help you clean up the mess. You fight the flood of childhood memories that comes rushing into your head, taunting you with the fun times.

As Mark and Jason lean back into cushy deck chairs and share a light beer stolen from the fridge, they are on the subject of Holly. Your Holly. You instantly tune in.

Tight little body, Mark says, taking another swig from the can. But man, I never understood why Rob would want her for more than a hookup.

Jason doesn't say anything.

Still, Mark continues, Holly ... mmm ... nice tits.

Your blood, or what would be blood, rushes to your head. If you were there, you'd kick his ass, but you aren't. You are and you aren't. Okay, so how about making something move? You haven't tried it yet, but this would be the perfect place to let it rip. Let a cushion, a beer can, something, smack Mark in the face. Anything to give him the notion that this is not cool. But before you can try concentrating all your focus onto an object, Mark shuts up.

Glancing between the two guys, you notice that Jason has the exact expression on his face that you'd have if they could see you: he looks like he wants to hurt Mark.

Don't talk shit about her.

Mark raises his head, a sheepish smile on his face. Hey, I'm just kidding. What's your deal?

Jason's glare is hot. Holly's a nice girl.

Yeah, real nice, Mark says, his mouth twisting into a smirk. If it weren't for her, then Rob would be here.

Right, Jason says.

Just saying, man. If he hadn't been giving her a ride, then it never would have happened, Mark says, taking a big swig of beer.

You don't know that. Jason closes his mouth, and it's a hard, firm line, like there's more he would say if Mark wasn't being such an ass.

Right. Mark salutes him with the beer can. If it wasn't for her, he would have walked home.

You wait for them to say more about what happened to you. You find yourself leaning in, as if that would make them reveal more details, more info that you wish you knew about that night, the end of which you can hardly remember except in flashes. Funny how you thought it would all come back to you once you crossed over. But you haven't crossed over yet, have you? If you had, you wouldn't be here listening to them talk crap about Holly.

I gotta get going, man, Jason says, breaking eye contact with Mark. Later.

Yeah. Mark leans back in the chair, taking another slug from the beer.

You follow Jason out of the yard and down the block—four houses, to be exact. At the foot of his driveway, he looks up at the dark front

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Cosa pensano gli utenti di Wherever You Go

4.4
11 valutazioni / 11 Recensioni
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Recensioni dei lettori

  • (5/5)
    Loved it, though I got confused a few times with the POV switching, it was easy to catch on. I was almost in tears at the end....
  • (4/5)
    First I want to say I really enjoyed reading this book. Second I have to say I used up a whole box of tissues reading this emotion packed book. Each of the characters in Wherever You Go touched my heart in one way or another. Holly, is the sad, broken hearted and heavily burdened girl. The one I wanted to reach out and hug throughout this book! Rob, the boy who is dead and Holly morns. I wanted so much to jump in the book and try to help Rob cross over! Then we have Jason, Oh My...Jason is the sweetheart that tries to help Holly in so many ways throughout this book. But instead he ends up hurting her in the long run and he doesn't even realize it till its too late. The story plot of Wherever You Go, feels so real when you are reading it, that you feel as if you are a ghost right next to Rob and trying your best to help Holly, Robs family and his friends. Its as if you are watching all of it unfold around you, but you can't do anything to help any of them! I will say this as well, the ending of this story surprised me!!! I didn't see that one coming. All in all, Wherever You Go is a great contemporary Young Adult book. Just bring tissues when you read it!
  • (4/5)
    MY THOUGHTSLOVED ITHoliday Mullen is struggling with life after a devastating car accident in which her boyfriend, Rob, dies. Her mother is working two jobs, her ailing grandfather has moved in with them, she has to babysit her little sister Lena and now Holly must do everything all while trying to be a high school senior. Her grandfather, Aldo, is suffering from Alzheimer's and begins to hear and see a young man named Roberto. Roberto turns out to be Rob, Holly's boyfriend in ghost form with whom he can communicate easily with even though he has problems getting his point across with everyone else. To complicate matters even more, Holly and Rob's best friend, Jason, are now finding themselves falling in love. The story is told by each character, Rob, Holly and Jason in alternating chapters. As Holly and Jason start to have feelings for each other, Rob confides to Aldo everything he thinks he did wrong in his relationship with Holly and confesses that he believes he caused the accident. Rob seems to wander the earth in an endless progression from place to place trying to help where he can. Jason steals my heart when he tries to lighten Holly's load while Holly tries really hard to do it all herself. This book brought tears to my eyes several times since there are parts so sad you wonder if Holly will ever make it out of her sad existence and find some happiness. You wonder if Rob will ever find peace and if Aldo will find some way to communicate. Davis does a wonderful job of bringing together a struggling family and shows that a teen can be responsible while still being true to herself. I really wonder how many teens there are like Holly in this world, struggling to help keep their family just exisiting and getting by.
  • (4/5)
    his book really touch my heart.I loved that at every turn of the page heart ache split out but also a new healing began.What I liked most about this book is the great plot line of love and forgiveness. I loved that the reader see the affect of Rob's death not just on Holly but on his friends and family. As the story progresses, the reader also gets to see things from Rob's point of view and how he feels. this is really a unique element to the story that develop well over the course of the plot line.The love interest in this book is so great! I loved that while Holly and Jason are both learning to forgive and move on from what happen that night, that is gave them peace. The both comforted each other, loving one another unconditionally. They both know what it is like to loose something. It only makes it hard for them to learn to live and let go.I really like how in the end after all secrets are exposed, how well everyone fell into a state of peace. For so long people kept blaming themselves, anger, hurt and bitter. I am happy that the ending gave a hope to a new beginning. All of the point of view switches were right on target and did not confuse me.If you want to read a book on love lost and found again, this is your book. Wherever You Go deals with the aftermath of heartache but learning to live once again. To forgive what happen in the past and move forward. Wherever You Go is a beautifully written story on finding the strength to live.
  • (5/5)
    "Wherever You Go" is a must read. I didn't know much about this book when I received it. I knew it was about a girl (Holly) whose boyfriend (Mark) recently died and is hanging around as a ghost. I thought it might be similar to Jeri Smith-Ready's "Shade" series which I really enjoy. They are not comparable at all, although both are exceptionally good books. "Wherever You Go", while technically a paranormal book (after all a good portion of the book is narrated by a ghost!)just seems to feel more real.Emma is still grieving her boyfriend Mark when she learns that she will soon be caring for her grandfather who is moving in with her family. Holly already cares for her younger sister because her single mother works two jobs to support them. Complicating things further is that Aldo has Altzheimer's. It is becoming more and more advanced and he struggles to communicate. Holly cooks, cleans, parents and nurtures both of her charges while still attending school and dealing with her griefEnter Jason, Mark's best friend. He too is in mourning and wants to get to know Holly better. He is a good guy from a well to do family and Holly is embarrassed because of her family situation. Jason gets that Holly has responsibilities but he wants her to see she deserves to spend time on herself as well. Meanwhile Mark is watching everything and suffering his own inner demons. No one can see him...until someone does.This book is so very much more than a paranormal story. Its so much more than a romance. These characters are real and I spent the majority of the book zooming through pages and praying that they would end up with a happily ever after. But this book did the right thing and stays a realistic story. I very much appreciated how the author tackles the subject of Altzheimers, it breaks my heart much in the same way that reading "The Notebook" did. I also really sympathized with Holly being put in the adult role in her family. It is obvious from the start the Holly's mother can't cope with things at home and in fact seems to find relief in going to work.I can't say more without giving too much away, but I highly encourage readers to pick up this book. I am sure you won't be able to put it down until you close the last page. Even then the story will stay with you for a very long time.
  • (4/5)
    I really loved this book! It's kind of one of those books that it's hard to pin point everything that made it so good. But I think for me was that I could connect with it. With the story itself. This probably isn't considered contemporary because there's a ghost. And we get his side of the story, he's definitely a main character. But other than that, this is most definitely a contemporary book. And no matter what it's categorized as, that's what it is for me. Plus, I believe in ghosts.We get three narrations in this book and it's kind of odd how it's done and I wasn't sure if I liked it at first, but once I got use to it I realized I liked it. Holly tells the story in first person, Rob (the ghost) in second person (at least I think that's what it's called) and Jason in third person. It switches between the three without telling us who the narrator is, which some may find confusing but I didn't have any problems. Each voice was distinctive and I didn't find it hard to follow at all.Holly and Jason are still grieving for Rob, Rob can't seem to pass over and is stuck being a ghost and watching all his loved ones go about their lives. No one can see him until Holly's grandfather, who has alzheimers, comes to live with her and he can see Rob's ghost. He and Rob spend a lot of time together talking and Aldo (the grandfather) is only lucid with him. His disease has really taken him over. But everyone just thinks he's hallucinating, they don't really believe that Roberto is Holly's Rob. Holly doesn't hang out with Jasons group, Robs old group of friends. But Jason has always been drawn to her. And watching the two of them realize their feelings and work through things together all while going through Aldo's list of things he wants to remember was really great. It showed us how kind Jason is. What a good guy he is. I work with elderly and especially with those who have alzheimers. I understand the difficult time that Holly's family has with caring for him and trying to help him retain some memory as well as trying to keep him lucid. Compared with patients I've worked with Aldo isn't so bad. But I can imagine to someone who isn't familiar with the disease and is dealing with a family member with it, it would be difficult. And Holly has so much on her shoulders since her mom works ALL the time. She's responsible for her grandfather, her little sister and has to go to school. It really is a lot for her to deal with! I really liked how things played out in the book. I thought the story line was terrific though maybe moved just a little slow at times in the first half. The second half had me fully pulled in though and I had a hard time putting the book down. I liked how we could see how things were affecting all the different people, how the adults all had these major issues that made us not love them, or feel just a bit of anger towards them, but then later they would do things that sort of redeemed themselves. Made us realize that we all make mistakes and as long as correct them, or apologize for them, things can work out.I would give this book 5 stars but I had a hard time connecting with Holly. I'm not sure what it was, but she just felt out of reach to me. A little cold and I just wasn't able to connect with her. I felt like I saw brief flashes of her personality, but that's it. Even though I didn't connect with her very well I did feel her pain and struggle. I felt bad for her and was cheering for her to find the strength to do what was right for her, not only for her family.This book is a stand alone and it was perfect that way. I thought the ending was brilliant and left me very satisfied. And even though I didn't truly connect with Holly I really loved this book and I very highly recommend it!
  • (5/5)
    I found this to be a wonderfully written book!Taking you through so many true to life heart wrenching issues with a splash of the paranormal world add in. Just a completely amazing look at life with the loss of a loved one,teen depression,overload of responsibility that frequently happens to teens and the older child today as well as one of the best views into the world of Alzheimer's disease from all different angles of the many people it effects. This book had me cheering,crying,my heart ached for everyone involved.I without a doubt give this book 5 stars!
  • (4/5)
    With a hauntingly different take on the typical YA love triangle, WHEREVER YOU GO is a painstakingly beautiful story about family, loss and love and all that it entails. Heather Davis has brought something special to WHEREVER YOU GO by touching on some of the deepest rooted emotions and aspects of life and putting it all into one, clean yet emotional and fulfilling novel.Our main character, Holly, isn't living the life of the perfect teenager socialite. Holly isn't the most beautiful of girls, she isn't the most popular, in fact she is the opposite and she definitely doesn't come from money to help hide all the imperfections in her life. Instead, Holly comes from a broken home, living with her mom and sister in a run down apartment where there never seems like there is enough money even with her mom working two jobs, leaving the burden of her little sister on her. Things only further deteriorate when her Alzheimer's stricken grandfather, Aldo, moves in with them and she goes from being the primary care taker of her sister to her sister and her grandfather. One thing that Holly did have, despite curious minds, was a loving boyfriend, though, he was killed when they were in a car accident. The amazing thing about Holly was, even in the midst of her shutting down or throwing a fit was her uncanny ability to always end up putting others first. She complained and wished her situation was different, but when she opened her eyes to her grandfather and had encouragement from someone she didn't think she'd find a friend in, her true colors shone through and her true beauty took over.Rob, Holly's dead boyfriend, is the second character we follow. Though he is dead, Rob is battling his unresolved emotions from his death and struggles with many emotions, including jealousy, seeing the world go on around him. Despite the sensitivity of of the situation, Rob finds purpose in his afterlife beyond his own need for closure. Rob helps Aldo in a way that not only helps him cope with his own situation but helps Aldo and Holly in their quest to help Aldo remember what he never wanted to forget. Rob's voice got a little aggravating at times, he saw things forgetting to look at the whole, but what more could you expect from someone who died young and with unfinished business. Even through his whiny aspects, learning about Rob and the truths behind his life touched base on some very realistic teenage scenarios.Jason, the third character we follow is Rob's best friend and the person who is there, is alive, and can do everything Rob can't. Though he is rich, hot and popular, Jason steps away from the spotlight of his peers and starts perusing the need to get close to Holly and to help her. Despite stereotypes that I may have cast on Jason he quickly pushed those thoughts to the side and proved to me, while he isn't perfect, that he could think on his own despite the urgings around him and that he does in fact have a decent soul. Even though the way they got there, I think Holly brought out the best in Jason, giving him a glimpse of the man he could be and would be if he took the time to appreciate what was around him. Through the point of views of Holly, Rob and Jason we are taken on separate yet parallel sets of emotional roller coasters. With each person we experience a different set of raw emotions and group of real situations. With a cast of characters that grew from the first page to the last with their life's lessons and morals following them, WHEREVER YOU GO is full of ups and down, sadness and happiness and most importantly hope. Everything about this story felt so real while it tackled everyday issues. WHEREVER YOU GO is a book I am confident in recommending to you for those willing to tackle all matters of the heart. With a beautiful cover to boot, you can't really go wrong.
  • (4/5)
    Wherever You Go revolves around three characters, whom take turns as narrator of the story. First, there is Holly, a teenage girl who recently lost her boyfriend in a car wreck. Holly was also in the car, but survived the crash. Holly is not only responsible for her schoolwork, but also the care of her younger sister and grandfather with Alzheimers. Holly's mom works two jobs to support her family. Then there is Rob, the boyfriend that was killed in the crash. Rob is still wandering around earth as a ghost trying to figure out how to get to heaven. He befriends Aldo, Holly's grandfather. Aldo is the only living sould able to see Rob. Rob and Aldo help each other reach out to the ones they love. Finally, there is Justin, Rob's best friend and Holly's new boyfriend. Justin falls hard for Holly, but Holly has a hard time letting go of Rob. With no warning as to when the narrator was changing from one character to the other, I first found the book difficult to read. However, once I picked up on the different personalities of the characters, it was easier to see the change coming. I think that teenagers will be able to relate to many of the topis in this book. Many teens find themselves confused about their futures and find it difficult to talk to those that care about what is going on in their lives. Many teens are taking on more responsibility than they should be required to take on due to the economy and one parent families. As a parent, I also like how the author showed the vulnerable sude of the parents as well as the teens. It reminds all of us we are not perfect, and if stop and listen to one another, we can make it through anything together. I strongly recommend this book to teens and adults alike. This review is written on the unedited Kindle galley sent by netgalley.com.
  • (4/5)
    Wherever You Go is told through three different perspectives: Holly (first person), Jason (third person), and Rob’s ghost (second person). This has the potential to be a bit overwhelming, but Heather Davis manages to pull it off. The different points of view are so distinct from each other that it’s impossible to be confused. While this style doesn’t exactly make the book feel completely fluid, it does prove to make Wherever You Go stand out. The three storylines all tie together in a beautiful way.One of the best things about Wherever You Go is its ability to evoke emotion in the reader. There are so many moments that left me simmering with outrage or smiling with delight. The chapters involving Holly are the most powerful, particularly because of her incredibly challenging situation. It’s easy to be awed by Holly’s immense compassion and patience, but it’s also easy to become increasingly frustrated with her mother. Holly’s mother brings up an interesting point for discussion—is it okay to saddle your daughter with so much responsibility that she is unable to have a life of her own?Wherever You Go has a serious storyline, but things aren’t all doom and gloom—there are moments of hope, moments of laughter, and moments of love. The budding relationship between Holly and Jason is positively adorable, and the things they do together (namely, bring joy to Holly’s grandfather) are so heartwarming. Also heartwarming is the connection between Aldo (Holly’s grandfather) and Rob’s ghost. They have quite a bit in common, and the things they talk about really make you think. At first, the infusion of a teensy bit of supernatural doesn’t feel entirely necessary because of Wherever You Go’s strong realistic themes, but because of the storyline between Aldo and Rob, it’s completely validated.Wherever You Go is a heartwarming and heartbreaking story of letting go that fans of contemporary YA will surely enjoy. Its themes are poignant, its characters are lovable, and its story is captivating. Wherever You Go delivers insight into the lives of three very complicated teens, and ultimately made me feel grateful for what I have.
  • (5/5)
    I connected with this novel almost immediately, when I started reading. I felt such overwhelming sadness and empathy for Holly and the situation that she was dealing with. It wasn't bad enough that she'd survived a car accident that killed her boyfriend, but now she finds herself thrown head-long into not only taking care of her nine year old sister Lena, but also looking after her grandfather who has come to live with them in their small cramped apartment and is dealing with Alzheimer’s. I have personal experience and knowledge in what it's like to watch someone you care a great deal about deteriorate before your eyes, how helpless you feel, because there's really nothing that you can do for them except try and be as supportive as you can be. So, on that note, Holly's pain and frustration at having to deal with that instead of getting to be a normal teenager and missing out on other things kids her age were getting to do, was easily understandable. The love story told was very sweet and I found myself liking Jason almost immediately. I couldn't help but root for Jason and Holly to get together, because I think that they were always sort of meant to be in a way. It was sweet the way Jason wanted to help Holly make sure that Aldo got to experience most of the things on his list, that he didn't want to forget. Plus, I like that Jason had always had some sort of feelings for her all along, and it wasn't just because now that Rob was gone, he was finally going for his chance. He really cared about Holly and he wanted to see her happy. Rob, on the other hand, I felt extremely sad for him and how invisible he must have felt in the last weeks before his death. I like that he was able to realize that even when you don't think it's there, love is still very much all around you. It was such a big revelation and such a sad one, at the same time, because you knew that he wouldn't get to experience the things that Holly and everyone else had in store for them in the future, because his future had been cut short due to his recklessness and the deep ingrained sadness from his depression that caused his suicide.Still though, it was nice to see him realize that maybe through helping other's move on and learn to live and possibly love again - to be happy, that he was able to let go and move on himself. The friendship that developed between Rob and Aldo, I think, turned out to be one of my favorite aspects of the books. It was sweet and I liked how Rob wanted to help Aldo get his daughter to actually "see" him, when she looked at him even if it hurt a great deal. It meant something to him, for her to know that he was still there even if he was barely hanging on. Those two helped each other quite a bit and it was endearing to read. Holly has incredible amounts of strength that I sometimes wish I had possessed when I was going through a similar experience myself. How she managed to keep it all together, without completely losing is very admirable, given what she was having to deal and the level of stress it had to have had on her. It was sad to see her at odds with her mother so much and pretty much full-filling a larger portion of the role that her mother should have been playing, then to see them argue about whether or not she was in charge or not in charge. There was a moment, when I really wanted her mother to realize just how much she weight she was putting on her daughter's shoulders and realize, that maybe she needed to bear a little bit more of the weight and try to be a bit more understanding of Holly or supportive than she was at times instead of expecting so much. Lena was adorable and I loved her relationship with Holly, and how she had such an endless supply of bubbly energy, which I feel like all nine year olds should have. Her youth was so bright and alive, despite the hardships that her family was facing and through it all she managed to keep her spirits alive. All in all, I truly enjoyed this book a great deal and would definitely read it again.