YA Summer Read
When Ashlyn’s father goes to prison and her mother goes to rehab for depression, her world falls apart. Ashlyn’s father decides she needs to work at a retreat for the summer with a cousin she barely knows.
This story is a companion book to ‘It Started With Goodbye’, and ‘Everywhere You Want to Be’. Although they have crossover characters, each can be read separately.
I was really excited to read, ‘No Place Like Here,’ when I found out it took place at a wilderness retreat. This is such a unique premise and setting.
It is a ‘Hansel and Gretal’ retelling, although this is very subtle. Deb as the witch definitely took a while to catch onto even with the candy and gingerbread house references. Ashlyn’s quote journal and her leaving ‘breadcrumbs’ of quotes everywhere was wonderful and something I would love to do.
I did feel sorry for Deb. In some ways, I felt she was a very misunderstood character. I also liked Ashlyn, she was very flawed and I loved that. I liked Hannah and that she was Ashlyn’s cousin. I would love to see more cousin relationships in YA.
Of course, the elephant in the room is what a big jerk Ashyln’s father was. He was so terrible to his family. He was such an unsympathetic character. Her father going to jail really seemed justified and really added to Ashlyn’s story.
The story did drag a little in the middle and I felt like there were a lot of little things going on. This did give the story a slice of life feel, though, and I enjoyed reading about the activities going on at the retreat.
I liked seeing Ashlyn grow as a person throughout the story and thought the ending was great. I loved the book and I really hope to hear more of Ashlyn’s story in Christina June’s future books. A perfect YA summer read.
***Originally posted on Thebookreturn.com***