Saturday, July 2, 2016

Review : Since You've Been Gone by Morgan Matson

Saturday, July 2, 2016
Title : Since You've Been Gone
Author : Morgan Matson
Genre : YA contemporary
Release Date : May 6th, 2014
Publisher : Simon and Schuster


It was Sloane who yanked Emily out of her shell and made life 100% interesting. But right before what should have been the most epic summer, Sloane just…disappears. All she leaves behind is a to-do list.

On it, thirteen Sloane-inspired tasks that Emily would normally never try. But what if they could bring her best friend back?

Apple picking at night? Okay, easy enough.

Dance until dawn? Sure. Why not?

Kiss a stranger? Um... 

Emily now has this unexpected summer, and the help of Frank Porter (totally unexpected), to check things off Sloane's list. Who knows what she’ll find?

Go skinny-dipping? Wait...what?

In a well-ordered universe, I would have read this book as soon as it's out in the world, but well, it's not a well-ordered universe. I read it for free on Riveted (which you guys should check out), and I'm so glad that I did it because this book change the way I see life.

Let's talk about our MC first, Emily. Basically, I am Emily, and Emily is me. I could relate a lot to her that it's almost scary. People think that she's shy and quiet, but when she's with her best-friend Sloane, she could rock the world. That's the case for me too. Drop me to a party where my friends won't attend, and you'd probably find me walking aimlessly so I don't look friendless. I'm the worst when it comes to starting a conversation with a stranger. But when I'm with my friends? I could partying until dawn. My point is, Emily might be shy, but with the right person, she could be reckless and bold.

There is, of course, romance in this book, and it's between Emily and Frank Porter--which is the junior class president and a-possible-valedictorian. Can I say that I adore these two? They started as a friends, which blooms into more than friendship. There's no insta-love, but it's not that kind of romance filled with sexual tension. It's more like, an easy-going romance (I'm not saying that their romance is easy, just felt like that). Whatever it is, I think it's perfect and fit the book well.

When I first read the summary, I thought that it's about the friendship between Emily and Sloane. Well, it is, but I think it's more about finding yourself. For almost 2 years, Emily has been shadowed by her the reckless and bolder Sloane, so when Sloane is gone, Emily is lost too. The list that Sloane gave to Emily might be not for helping Emily to find herself (I think it's more for Emily to have something to do in the summer), but she find herself and new friends through that. This why I said that this book change the way I see life. Friendship is beautiful, and I think you should have as many as possible, but you shouldn't lose yourself completely. Your friends won't stay with you forever--at some point in life, things will happen, and your friends won't leave you a list to 'find yourself'--and when it did, you'll have to move on. I realize that this might not be the point of this book, but this is what I got from the book. Again, I'm not saying that friendship is a bad thing or you should be cautious with your friends, because you should not.

One last thing that I want to say is I really adore Matson's writing. There's so many beautiful phrases here, but at the same time, it doesn't sound weird coming from a teenager. Instead, it sounds natural and realistic. Also, I really love the list! I even plan to do it too, but it might be a problem since I live in a big city (this is why I want to move to a small town sometimes).

In conclusion, if Second Chance Summer is about family, and Amy and Roger's Epic Detour is about romance, then Since You've Been Gone, is a coming-of-age story about friendship and how it'll help you find yourself.

“Real friends are the ones you can count on no matter what.
The ones who go into the forest to find you and bring you home.
And real friends never have to tell you that they’re your friends.”


  1. I feel the same way! I feel like I am Emily, and Emily also changed my life! i read this book last year, and I still think about it. I cannot wait to give it a re-read!
    AND I LOVE FRANK PORTER. okay that is all. great review! *sends hugs*

  2. I have this on my bookshelf so I am going to get to it ASAP! Thanks for the great review (and the nudge to read this immediately)!

    Jamie @ Books and Ladders

  3. YEAH! I am so glad you liked this so much! I completely agree with everything you've said - I love how friendship was such a huge focus of this book. Thanks for sharing and, as always, fabulous review! <3

    ~ Zoe @ Stories on Stage

  4. I've heard a lot of good things about this book, but haven't had a chance to pick it up. After your review, I might need to bump it up on the list.

  5. I haven't read Since You've Been Gone yet, but I read Matson's The Unexpected Everything and adored it despite my hesitance towards contemporary books. Emily sounds like an extremely relatable character-- I'm much more comfortable surrounded by those I know and trust-- and I could imagine being friends with her. I'm also glad to hear the romance is developed with slow-burn, since insta-love is becoming a common trope I have grown to dislike. Lovely review!:)

    ✨ Claire @ Cover to Cover

  6. Ooh, I actually have this book borrowed out from the library right now! Finding it a bit hard to get into...but it sounds really good, especially with how it deals with friendships!
    Geraldine @ Corralling Books


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