Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Review: How to Say Goodbye by Amber Lin

Amy has a secret: no one’s ever held her hand. She doesn’t even know how to hug. Everyone thinks she’s smart, but straight A's are way easier than making friends. Then she meets Dane, a golden-haired surfer whose easy charm and hot touch teach her what she longs to know.

Dane lives for the salty breeze and a sweet wave, because that’s all he has. He’s been on the streets since he was fourteen. A drifter. Homeless. Then he meets Amy. Smart and accomplished, she’s everything he’s not. He wants to be the sort of man who deserves her.

Except that means facing down his past—and that past might very well swallow them both.

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What I thought about How to Say Goodbye

Amy has lived a sheltered life, focusing on school and not much else. She's not even sure what she's missing, because she's never had that personal touch. Until she meets Dane on the beach. He invites her to work on his sand castle and so the romance begins.

Dane works very hard to keep Amy from knowing that he's homeless and has some things in his past and present that he doesn't want her to know. He has a strong sense of honor, which I really liked about this character. As things get more serious with Amy, he has to overcome his reluctance to trust her.

What I liked most about How To Say Goodbye were the characters. Amy and Dane both seemed fresh to me. They couldn't have been more different but they really clicked. Even though you know that the relationship is short term from the start, you just want them to find some way to stay together.

When Dane makes changes to be the kind of man he wants to be for Amy, he's presented with a difficult choice, and the right choice will end up in heartbreak for both of them.

Overall, I thought the book moved along with a nice brisk pace, although it seemed to drag somewhat at the end. Good characters, lots of emotion. A sweet tale of first love under some difficult circumstances.

This was my first read from this author and I'm interested in checking out more of her work.

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