Wednesday, June 3, 2009

After the Moment-- Garret Freymann-Weyr

A little back-story: So, I am a huge Garret Freymann-Weyr fan. She wrote My Heartbeat, which is a touching story about a young girl whose older brother is gay. She also wrote The Kings are Already here about a young ballet dancer and a chess prodigy, and and my personal favorite Stay With Me which is about sisters, love, and hotels.

So why why why didn't I love After the Moment?? It has all the elements of a good book... interesting characters, a slightly off-kilter plot-line and format, and resolution at the end that leaves the reader satisfied yet still wanting more. It's like all the parts and pieces were great, but put together they just didn't work.

After the Moment is Leigh's story, mostly. When his step-sister Millie's biological father passes away, Leigh goes to live with his father and step-family to help Millie normalize after her tragedy. While living there, he falls in love with a recovering anorexic girl named Maia. Leigh learns about himself as a person as he helps the two women in his life come to terms with their own life's problems.

I guess my issue with this book is that Leigh is the center of the plot, yet he is the most uninteresting character. He is spineless in a frustrating way, and almost greeting card perfect. He kind of reminds me of the way that Chase Crawford acts (he plays Nate on the Gossip Girl TV Show... am I loosing you here?)... you know, pretty to look at but bland and not particularly talented. Also, there are many characters to keep track of, and the most interesting part of the book are these little flashes to the future, and they are way too infrequent.

So I guess what I will say in summery, is that while this is a decent book, it's not great. I'm not sure that it has all that much teen appeal, but the more mature teen reader might like it. Also, people who like a nontraditional, not schmaltzy love story might enjoy it too.

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