Aug 16, 2013
Title: Come Back To Me
Author: Coleen Patrick
Publisher: Coleen Patrick
Publication Date: April 10, 2013
Whitney Denison can’t wait to start over.
She thought she had everything under control, that her future would always include her best friend Katie… Until everything changed.
Now her life in Bloom is one big morning after hangover, filled with regret, grief, and tiny pinpricks of reminders that she was once happy. A happy she ruined. A happy she can’t fix.
So, she is counting down the days until she leaves home for Colson University, cramming her summer with busywork she didn’t finish her senior year, and taking on new hobbies that involve glue and glitter, and dodging anyone who reminds her of her old life.
When she runs into the stranger who drove her home on graduation night, after she’d passed out next to a ditch, she feels herself sinking again. The key to surviving the summer in Bloom is unraveling whatever good memories she can from that night.
But in searching for answers, she’ll have to ask for help and that means turning to Evan, the stranger, and Kyle, Katie’s ex-boyfriend. Suddenly, life flips again, and Whitney finds herself on not only the precipice of happy but love, too, causing her to question whether she can trust her feelings, or if she is falling into her old patterns of extremes.
As she uncovers the truth about her memories, Whitney sees that life isn’t all or nothing, and that happy isn’t something to wait for, that instead, happy might just be a choice.
Come Back To Me really gripped me by the heart. I felt every emotion throughout this book, and it took me a few days before I could sit down and write this review.
Whitney is one of the most undamaged, damaged people I’ve ever read about. She has been through horrible events, did all the wrong things to cope, and still she has this clarity about her that is intriguing. Whitney is smart, kind, and learning how to be on her own. Come Back To Me tells the story of a girl who relied on her best friend for too many years to take the lead and make the decisions, and she never learned to make them on her own. Whitney’s parents were the very definition of absent, although I could sense that they wanted to be involved. They were broken in their own ways, and reaching out to their daughter involved a part of them they didn’t know how to risk.I loved taking this journey with Whitney, because she was such broken mess at the beginning, and seeing what she turned into was just amazing
Katie didn’t even have a living role in this book, but I would be remiss if I didn’t talk about her. She existed in every page, and her coldness exuded from the novel. Katie had her own set of separate issues, but in the end she was implacable in her unforgiving nature. Perhaps in time that would’ve changed, and by the end of the novel we begin to see that, but ultimately I had little respect for Katie. She allowed her strict rules to govern everyone and everything she was associated with, and she didn’t allow mistakes in others.
Evan was a fantastic supporting role, he knew just what to say and do to provoke Whitney into thinking. She didn’t always appreciate his patience, but I admired him for it. It wouldn’t have been easy for him to be attracted to a girl like Whitney, who had drinking problems, and emotional issues. Somehow Evan was able to see the Whitney that existed underneath all of that, and it was something beautiful.
Coleen Patrick did a wonderful job with Come Back To Me. She created characters that felt like they were modeled after real people. I never once felt like they were caricatures or that they fell flat. All of the characters were individuals and that is something that is hard to create. They were also intriguing, I didn’t always like Whitney, Evan, Katie or even some of the side characters, but I always wanted to know more.
I did think at times that the hallucinations of Katie were a bit much. As was the constant droning on about picturing Katie everywhere. It had been a few months, and that part of the grieving process should’ve started to pass. I know Whitney had her issues with coping, but from my own experiences I feel like it went on too long. I also didn’t like the addition of Kyle, he was great as backstory but I just felt like he was ultimately unnecessary to the story. I just didn’t feel like he was integral enough to warrant that many scenes, and that much concern from Whitney.
Overall, this book was a fantastic read, and I recommend it. There were parts because of Whitney’s reminiscing that seemed to drag, because of this I would give it a 3.5 stars instead of 4. If you want a book that makes you stop and evaluate your life and how you’re living it, then check this one out.
**Please Note: This review is my honest opinion and I did not receive monetary compensation from it.**
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