Monday, June 8, 2015

#MonthOfMatson Wrap Up! (*Spoiler-Free*)

I know we're really far away from the end of the month, but I've finished all three books written by Morgan Matson! I marathoned these three books as a part of the #MonthOfMatson challenge? readalong? whatever, hosted by Maureen Keavy. You can find out more about her Announcement Video or in the Goodreads Group! The month isn't over yet, so you could still join us!

I've had all of Morgan Matson's books sitting on my TBR shelves for a while, so when Maureen announced this challenge (I give up, I'm just going to call it a challenge.) I was pumped to read them. I didn't totally plan on reading them all within a week, but, whatever, things happen.
I read the books in publication order, because that just seemed like the thing to do, so:

 When I first started reading this, I immediately understood why Morgan Matson is so well-loved, and loved so fervently. This book swept me right into it, and I loved everything about Amy and Roger as characters. I appreciated their purpose, and understood them. I enjoyed the playlists, photos, receipts, and other goodies spread throughout the book so much that I shared them with my husband and friends as I read them. I read this entire book in a day, and I don't regret a thing about that decision. I loved that the author visited the places herself.

This was just a fun read. I gave it 4.5/5 STARS.

I want to point out that I am the absolute opposite of Taylor. Taylor and I could not have more different personalities if Morgan Matson knew me and tried to write my opposite, but I really connected with her throughout this book. I completely understand the desire to run away when things get tough or when conflict arises--although, like I said, I'm different, more confrontational and running into the center to assist when times get difficult. I think that the desire to distance ourselves from stress, sadness, and/or disappointment is a natural one, and one Taylor often gives in to. But she's seventeen, who could blame her? I loved this book, in a way I didn't think I could ever love a book about someone so completely different from me. The family that Matson creates, and the friends, are so real and tangible to the reader that you feel their grief, and wish for their joy. This isn't really a spoiler, but it's a gray area, so LOOK AWAY, but the moment when Taylor lets us know that Warren has taken Gelsey to town to explain what is going during the family crisis was one of the most touching things I've ever read. I had to set the book down. I don't know why this hit my heart in an unexpected way--I can't really put my finger on it, but the forethought of the author was so present and committed that I had to take a few deep breaths.
I gave this book 5/5 STARS. I loved every second of it. Truly.
 I'd been told a few times that Since You've Been Gone was different than Matson two other novels, and it certainly was. There was still the well-written romantic relationships, great humor, and family relationships, but friendships took center stage in this one. I loved every character (except Sloane kind of), and desperately want a companion novel. Desperately. I feel like the checklist of challenges could have gone somewhere I wouldn't have liked it--like a scavenger hunt, or a hurried thing, but the list was written into the story so well. I really liked this book.

I ended up giving this 5/5 STARS because I loved it. Duh.

In conclusion, I will leave you with this: Morgan Matson is talented, hilarious, and her books made me smile, cry, laugh, think, and want to keep reading and reading.

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