Title: The Last Thing You Said
Author: Sara Biren
Genre & Age Group: Contemporary, romance, young adult
Last summer, Lucy’s and Ben’s lives changed in an instant. One moment, they were shyly flirting on a lake raft, finally about to admit their feelings to each other after years of yearning. In the next, Trixie—Lucy’s best friend and Ben’s sister—was gone, her heart giving out during a routine swim. And just like that, the idyllic world they knew turned upside down, and the would-be couple drifted apart, swallowed up by their grief. Now it’s a year later in their small lake town, and as the anniversary of Trixie’s death looms, Lucy and Ben’s undeniable connection pulls them back together. They can’t change what happened the day they lost Trixie, but the summer might finally bring them closer to healing—and to each other.
Source: Thanks so much to ABRAMS Kids/Amulet Books for providing me with an e-ARC of this book via Netgalley!
How I Found Out About It: Netgalley
Coming across The Last Thing You Said on Netgalley, I was immediately attracted to that wondrous cover. Just LOOK at it! Yum!😍 When I pressed on the book and read the synopsis, I knew I had to read it. I really enjoy coming-of-age romances, so it was no surprise to me that I really enjoyed this story.
This book follows the dual perspectives of teens Lucy and Ben. The summer before, as the two were on a raft about to ask each other out, Ben’s sister and Lucy’s best friend Trixie’s heart stopped and killed her while swimming, which scarred them. This grief of someone so dear to them made them both drift away from each other, as well as wallow around in pity. But then the year anniversary of Trixie’s death rolls around, and the two realize that their grief can bring them back together again.
Books with dual POVs tend to be hit or miss for me, but for this one, I think I can safely say that the two characters had unique voices which set them apart, and I was easily able to tell who was speaking by flipping to any random page. If I don’t like a multiple POV book, it is because all the perspectives confuse me, and I can honestly say that I wasn’t confused at all while flipping between the two.
I found that both Lucy and Ben were able to develop immensely throughout the story. At first, they were wretchedly grieving over Trixie and blaming themselves for unexplainable reasons, but once they bonded again, it was quite easy to tell that they were slowly- but surely- reaching the upward turn of their sorrow. Also, this relates to Lucy especially, but they were both very strong and resilient characters, able to bounce back rather quickly after having trouble. Also, can I just mention how adorable little Emily was? Like AWWW!💞
I really liked the morals that this book entailed, which showed that life is what you make it, so you must make the best of what you have and the people you love. Nobody was expecting Trixie’s heart to fail while she was swimming- she was a trained, experienced swimmer with nothing to lose- but she ended up losing it all that one day. This just goes to show that you shouldn’t take anything for granted- every so often you should stop and think about what makes you thankful, because like Trixie, you could find it all taken away from you in the blink of an eye.
All in all, The Last Thing You Said was a great story. I have to admit that it does blend into the crowd with a lot of other YA books, but I know I will still remember it for its great characters and lessons. Anyway, this book is a great pick for those who are into coming-of-age romance stories which pull two lovers together because of grief, because the last thing I’m going to say is when April 4th comes, READ IT! *throws you the book*
*I received a digital ARC of this book via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.*