Friday, 2 December 2011

Review for Saving June by Hannah Harrington

Saving June by Hannah Harrington
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Release Date: May 1st 2011
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Grief, Suicide, Music, Summer, Road-trip
Rating: 4/5 stars
Source: Netgalley

Goodreads Summary:
" ‘If she’d waited less than two weeks, she’d be June who died in June. But I guess my sister didn’t consider that.’

Harper Scott’s older sister has always been the perfect one so when June takes her own life a week before her high school graduation, sixteen-year-old Harper is devastated. Everyone’s sorry, but no one can explain why.

When her divorcing parents decide to split her sister’s ashes into his-and-her urns, Harper takes matters into her own hands. She’ll steal the ashes and drive cross-country with her best friend, Laney, to the one place June always dreamed of going California.

Enter Jake Tolan. He’s a boy with a bad attitude, a classic-rock obsession and nothing in common with Harper’s sister. But Jake had a connection with June, and when he insists on joining them, Harper’s just desperate enough to let him. With his alternately charming and infuriating demeanour and his belief that music can see you through anything, he might be exactly what she needs.

Except June wasn’t the only one hiding something. Jake’s keeping a secret that has the power to turn Harper’s life upside down again."

Saving June has some of the most honest and fleshed out teen characters that I’ve come across in a long time. Harper’s voice is like my own was at that age and the way Harper and her friends interact mimicked my own friendships as well. Each character in this book is going through a growing pains of some sort. Harper, Jake and Laney have all been dished their fair share of pain and like all teenagers are trying to find a way to make their peace with the world despite everything it’s thrown at them.

This book explores so many different themes religion, suicide, sex, politics and music to name a few. Harrington isn’t afraid to tackle the big stuff and not only that but to put opinions out there through the eyes of angry teens who are demanding answers to why crappy things happen and are taking no prisoners. Saving June documents not only a physical journey as the three friends road-trip to California but also a mental one as Harper, Jake and Laney come to terms with both the beauty and hurt in this world and discover what it means to truly be alive.

Reading this book really felt like you were in Harper’s head that she was this real living person actually going through and experiencing all of these things. Hannah Harrington’s prose is so organic and heart felt and Harper’s observations on the world around her reads so true and honest that it’s impossible to read this book without it touching you in some way.

Music plays a big part in this story and Jake’s love for it and how he’s certain there’s a song for every situation makes him this really passionate guy who I totally swooned over. Jake’s kind of intense and damaged and the way that he feels about music is so contagious that you want to go and listen to a song he’s mentioned just because he likes it, you want to hear what he hears. A nice touch to the actual book itself is that all the playlists are at the back of the book and I’m totally going to download each song and re-live this book all over again through the music.

Saving June is in its simplest form a book about a girl who sets out to save her sister and instead ends up saving herself. If you’re a fan of books about summer road trips, intense and complex relationships, music or heck just life in general you’re going to love this book. This is one of the most honest accounts of one girl’s journey I’ve ever read and so lastly I would like to thank Hannah Harrington for taking me along for the ride.


  1. What a wonderful review - I'm definitely adding this to my list! @kirstylou29

  2. Lovely review. I've already read this, but you made me want to read it again.

  3. I've seen so many wonderful reviews of this book, I really cannot wait to read it!


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