Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Review: Places No One Knows

PLACES NO ONE KNOWS
Brenna Yovanoff
Contemporary-ish Young Adult
384 pages
Delacorte Press
Available Now
Source: Finished copy from publisher for review

THE STORY (from Goodreads)
Waverly Camdenmar spends her nights running until she can’t even think. Then the sun comes up, life goes on, and Waverly goes back to her perfectly hateful best friend, her perfectly dull classes, and the tiny, nagging suspicion that there’s more to life than student council and GPAs.

Marshall Holt is a loser. He drinks on school nights and gets stoned in the park. He is at risk of not graduating, he does not care, he is no one. He is not even close to being in Waverly’s world.

But then one night Waverly falls asleep and dreams herself into Marshall’s bedroom—and when the sun comes up, nothing in her life can ever be the same. In Waverly’s dreams, the rules have changed. But in her days, she’ll have to decide if it’s worth losing everything for a boy who barely exists.


MY THOUGHTS
Places No One Knows is one of those reads that feels effortless, one about everything and nothing at the same time that flows from one page to the next with such ease that we have little choice but to lose ourselves in the quick slice of life detailed for us in black and white.

Waverly is a puppet. Perfectly maintained and beautifully flawless, dancing on her strings to a tune set by her best friend and the expectations of her peers. She's not empty-headed or oblivious, instead she's aware of her strings and wears her perfection like a suit of armor, fully capable of wielding a pair of scissors and setting herself free, but so used to having them wrapped around her that her hands have forgotten how to make a cutting motion. There's something completely absorbing about watching as a quiet but impactful earthquake named Marshall and a frenzied delight of a hurricane named Autumn rattle her foundations, introducing a little change into the monotony of her high school existence.

Marshall is wrapped up every bit as tight as Waverly, but where her strings are pristine and unbroken, his are frayed and doused in alcohol. He gets through his days by drinking himself into feeling better, his home life an absolute mess and the main reason he seeks escape at the bottom of a bottle or the end of a lit cigarette. When Waverly starts showing up inexplicably in his room late at night however, he's forced to see his world through eyes that may or may not have trouble discerning what's real from what's not, and in doing so finds a direction he would never have found otherwise. His relationship with Waverly is fragile, existing in stolen nighttime moments and then disappearing with the rise of the sun, but not without leaving a few small remnants of the two of them behind.

Overall Places No One Knows is a beautiful story, defining and then redefining relationships and friendships as they ebb and flow, and leaving us with a smile on our faces as Waverly and Marshall find a way to bring the truths shared only at night into the light of day.

Rating: 4/5

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This book was sent to me by the publisher free of charge for the purpose of a review
I received no other compensation and the above is my honest opinion.

26 comments:

  1. I love how you described this Jenny, very poetic. Beautiful review!

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    1. Thanks Ali! I really enjoyed this one:)

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  2. Yes it sounds like a really beautiful one. thanks for the review because it was new to me

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    1. Glad I could put it on your radar Melliane! Highly recommend:)

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  3. If the book is half as evocative as your review, I need to give it a try for sure!
    I still haven't read any Brenna Yovanoff books, and it's about time I give one a try!

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    1. This would be a good place to start Pili! I really like her style, it has a dreamy quality to it no matter the genre:)

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  4. Gah. The Gossip Girl-esque tones does not appeal to me, to be honest. I'm glad you loved it, though.

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    1. Honestly, this didn't read very Gossip Girl at all to me, so you might give it a try Joy! Her best friend is a queen bee for sure, but the whole story is just really well done in my opinion:)

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  5. Oh this sounds darker than I expected. I kind of like the sound of the flow to this one and I don't read much contemp. Love the way you describe this one. Might have to try it!

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    1. It seems dark on the outside, but it never felt too heavy despite what both of them are going through, and I loved that about it. I steer way clear of weighty reads, and this was just perfect - lots of substance without leaving me feeling overwhelmed.

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  6. I tried another book by this author and it was just ok. I think it was the blurb's description and the actual book didn't match up. I'm willing to give this one a shot. Beautiful review, Jenny!

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    1. Hope this one works better for your Rummanah!

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  7. I could do with beautiful right now

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    1. I hear you, I was in the mood for beautiful too:)

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  8. I really enjoyed this Jenny, and you know I rarely read YA contemorary, but this was perfect for me. I really enjoyed Yovanoff's writing :)

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    1. Yay! I rarely read YA contemporary either Kim, but this was a winner for sure:)

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  9. I've been curious about this one because I know the authors writing is absolutely beautiful. We have a copy of it at my store and I may end up picking it up because it sounds great!

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    1. I hope you give it a try Candace!

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  10. I've only read fantasy by Yovanoff, and her writing was beautiful. This sounds a little bittersweet. I hope Waverly found a way to cut the strings and Marshall stopped with the self-destructive behavior. Lovely review, Jenny! :)

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    1. It does sound bittersweet, but it ends happy and is never emotionally overwhelming, so I hope you read it Rachel!

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  11. Sounds like my kind of emo read! Great review.

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    1. I think you'd definitely like this one:)

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  12. Just picked up the Temple Wars book! Book 1 is fascinating and had me engaged from page one! You guys should check it out! Temple Wars

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  13. I tried one of this author's earlier books a long time ago but I just didn't mesh with her writing style. This one does seem really, really interesting though so I'm curious to check it out. Thanks for your ringing endorsement, Jenny--onto the TBR it goes!

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  14. I have this and wasn't sure it was for me, but I love your review and it sounds like an easy read to slip into.

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  15. Just read the Temple Wars Novel on Ganesha! The story is well told through a parallel protagonist Tarun who helps Ganesha retrieve his objects from the spirit world. It's a page-turner that will have you wanting more. You guys should check it out! Temple Wars

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