Books That Came Out This Month · Reviews

“You Were Here” by Cori McCarthy

“Do you guys know what a Gordian knot is?” Bishop asked. “Some people think that it represents time. A tangle of sorts, but basically, it implies that anything that happened is still happening. That the past is never gone. The future already exists. Spirals upon spirals.” He cleared his throat. “So really, everyone who was ever here is still here. In a sense.”

Grief is such a complicated topic to write about. There are as many ways of grieving as there are people. It’s awfully easy to reduce it to one single shade of grey and hurt whoever we were trying to comfort in the first place. Also, grief can be a lonely path. We make it so. We don’t want anyone else to take the fall with us, for us. Sometimes, though, while we are falling, we open our eyes and realize we were never alone in the first place.

That said, I believe Cory McCarthy did quite a brilliant job with You Were Here.

Even though Jaycee is indeed the main character, this book is definitely not just about her. She was here, yes, but she was not alone.

You Were Here is a novel about a group of young people that are brought together by the pain of losing someone. A brother, a parent, a friend, a lover… and, at the end of the day, themselves. They are all trying to cope with the loss in their own way, some by choosing not to cope at all.

“I guess that makes sense. When I saw my brother die, my whole perspective on things changed. Life has borders all over the place. I like looking for them. Feeling them out. It gets you close to the others side.”

You Were Here tells the beautiful and heart wrenching story of the journey from the fall to the landing on both feet, from the darkness of the closed eyes to the opening and acknowledgment of others.

“It was an unspoken rule, iron law in my family; you never left without saying I love you, because what if you didn’t come back?”

Wonderfully written, visually stunning and with characters so real their pain is palpable, You Were Here is a roller coaster that will make you feel everything. Rage, love, disappointment, devotion, sadness, joy… it’s an emotional marathon that will leave you breathless.

I dare you to run it.

If you enjoyed All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven, Paper Towns by John Green and/or I Was Here by Gayle Forman, I most definitely recommend you reading this book. Make some space on your shelf of favourites, You Were Here is out and deserves some.

ARC provided by SOURCEBOOKS Fire via NetGalley.


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