Monday, March 6, 2017

Seven Days of You by Cecilia Vinesse

This book was provided to me for free through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Thoughts at a glance: *** (I liked it)

Summary: Sophia is moving back to the US in seven days, after spending most of her life in Tokyo. She doesn't want to say goodbye to her school, her friends, and the brilliant, electric city she has come to know and love. 

And to make matters worse, Jamie has just moved back to Tokyo -- Jamie, with whom she'd once been good friends and who had hurt her terribly before he left. Why couldn't he have just waited another week?

As she counts down the days and her friendships start to splinter, she finds a connection forming between her and Jamie. But with only a week left to go, is she just setting herself up for more heartbreak?

Thoughts: I find it highly fortuitous that earlier in the day, before I started this book, I was watching Before Sunset, because there were a lot of similar elements - boy and girl falling in love against the background of an amazing city. (There's even a lot of walking around and exploring different areas.) 

But where Seven Days falls short for me is... that it's rather short. I was definitely engrossed in the drama of the story, but I felt like there was so much backstory to unpack, and there just wasn't enough for me. 

First of all, there's the whole thing of Sophia and Jamie's history. The last time she saw him, he had done something really hurtful, and she had said some hurtful things back, and as a 34-year-old, _I_ can look at it and say, "Yeah, that sucks, but it's not like we stay friends with everyone we knew at the age of 14, especially when they leave the country." We don't get the extent of their former friendship until a little later in the book, and I wish we had gotten a clearer picture of that throughout. For a while, the only impression I get of younger-Jamie is that he was kind of awkward and had a big crush on Sophia, and he did not handle her lack of interest well (as sometimes young teens do). You'd think that she could've just written him off, considering how he moved back to the US after that. But it was something that stuck with her for YEARS, and I couldn't understand why his actions cut so deep until we hear later on that they were actually very close. Like I said, there was a lot to unpack and portray, but it just wasn't done. 

Secondly, there is a lot about Sophia's family relationships that I really wish could've been explored in more depth - her father, her sister, and even her mother. There was SO much there that was unsaid, and I wish we could've gotten more in-depth character and relationship development on that front - I could tell that that part of her life was really important, but I feel like it was all being held back or filtered somehow.

Anyway... it's not a bad criticism to say that I wish there had been more :) I liked this book and it was a quick read, and now I really want to go to Tokyo.

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