The 2012 End of the World Reading Challenge that is being hosted by Insatiable Booksluts.
Marie Landry is not only the author of Blue Sky Days, she is also one of my best e-friends. She book blogs at Ramblings of a Daydreamer and even so kind as to blog about my fundraising efforts. You should visit her blog and read her book. Here's why:
Blue Sky Days (223 pages) is a lovely read. The story shapes itself around the female protagonist, Emma Ward, as she struggles to make sense of her life as an adult. After graduating high school, Emma moves from the bustling metropolis of Toronto to the quiet and serene town of Riverview to live with her eccentric Aunt Daisy. I think most young people can relate quite easily to Emma; I know I could. She's always done the right thing - gotten good grades, participated in the right events - and now she's having an identity crisis. Who hasn't been there, done that? I know I have.
Shortly after her arrival, Emma finds herself infatuated, for the first time in her life, with a young man - Nicholas. They fall fast and hard for each other and Landry's description of their first kiss is what I like to refer to as a knee-cap melting moment.
About half way through the novel and only a short time into the couple's whirlwind romance, readers and characters alike find out that Nicholas has Leukemia. The rest of the novel takes readers through the trials and tribulations of a family dealing with the life-threatening disease. I'm not going to tell you whether Nicholas dies or not...you're just going to have to read the novel - which you can buy here, by the way.
While Nicholas fights his disease, he and Emma become ever-closer and at one point, Nicholas proposes to Emma; they plan to marry if he survives. This is the only part of the novel that I had trouble with and it's really only because I'm a cynic. First boy in her life, first kiss, first love isn't really a recipe for a successful marriage and I often found myself thinking; "This is pretty unrealistic." However, just because it doesn't work for most people doesn't mean first loves as lifelong loves won't work for some people - like Emma and Nicholas - and I should just bite my skeptic tongue and embrace the romance!
I highly recommend this novel for anyone who wants a heart-warming read. You'll fall in love with Landry's characters and anticipate the ending as if you are part of the story yourself.