Release Date: 06/26/12
Synopsis from goodreads.com:
This was supposed to be the best summer of Maggie’s life. Now it’s the one she’d do anything to forget.
Maggie Reynolds remembers hanging out at the gorge with her closest friends after a blowout party the night before. She remembers climbing the trail hand in hand with her perfect boyfriend, Joey. She remembers that last kiss, soft, lingering, and meant to reassure her. So why can’t she remember what happened in the moment before they were supposed to dive? Why was she left cowering at the top of the cliff, while Joey floated in the water below—dead?
As Maggie’s memories return in snatches, nothing seems to make sense. Why was Joey acting so strangely at the party? Where did he go after taking her home? And if Joey was keeping these secrets, what else was he hiding?
The latest novel from the author of The Tension of Opposites, One Moment is a mysterious, searing look at how an instant can change everything you believe about the world around you.
My thoughts on the book:
One Moment is the first book I've read by Kristina McBride, and I have to admit that I enjoyed it more than I thought I would. McBride is a master at showing instead of telling, and for the most part, the characters' reactions are believable and realistic. Each character is flawed, but I couldn't keep from caring about each of them. Even Shannon, who does some terrible things over the course of the novel. Each character also grows throughout the story, and by the end, everyone has changed. The dialogue is annoying at times, and McBride used the same three words to describe everything. The plot isn't unique, but it is well thought out. Even though there was no big mystery and no action, I still could not put this book down. I was as obsessed with getting to know the real Joey as Maggie was. To me, that is the mark of a good book.
One Moment begins at the gorge, and we get to walk through witness first hand what happened through Maggie's eyes. However, there are some parts missing from what we learn at the beginning of the book, and it isn't until the last half of the novel that we learn everything that happened on top of that cliff. I like how McBride showed us who Joey was instead of telling us who he was. From my brief observation of him, I could tell that he was full of life and wildly irresponsible. My assessment proved to be true, but he was also so much more than that. He was a liar and extremely selfish. The more I learned about him, the less I liked him. I don't think he deserved to die, but he did deserve a good kick in the business.
Maggie is a very weak character at times, and she refuses to believe what is right in front of her. Over the course of the story, she learns how to face things and that the truth, while not always pleasant, is important in order to live a balanced life. She also learns who her real friends are and aren't. Her friends, Tanna and Adam are my favorites, other than Maggie, of course. I didn't get to know Tanna as much as I would have liked, but this novel wasn't really the place for that. I did get to know quite a bit about Adam, though, and the more I got to know about him, the more I liked him. He is kind of the "anti-Joey."
The book is fast paced, but nothing felt rushed. The plot, while not unique, is intriguing, but I really feel that it was McBride's ability to make the reader feel what her characters are feeling that had me hooked. I laughed and cried right along with Maggie. When she told Joey goodbye, I told him goodbye, too. I felt everything she felt, other than her guilt. If I'd been in her place, I would have had a lot more guilt than she had... or at least a lot more guilt than I, as the reader, was shown. I didn't feel like she felt guilty enough for her pain about Joey's death to be completely believable. I would have liked a little more time spent on how she felt responsible for his death. That would have made things seem a bit more realistic.
The two main things I didn't like about this book are the descriptions and some of the dialogue. Everything was "sugary." The sky was sugary, the donuts were sugary, the ice cream was sugary, everything was sugary. Seriously there are plenty of other adjectives that can be used. Also the dialogue really annoyed me at times. I hated how McBride insisted on writing, "whaddo you mean?" instead of, "what do you mean?" Seriously, most people say it like "whaddo," there is no need to write it out phonetically. That's just obnoxious. And it wasn't just for one character. Every single character, if they were going to say "what do you mean," it came out "whaddo you mean." That took me out of the story and was extremely unnecessary, in my opinion.
Overall, I'd recommend this book to anyone who loves a good contemporary YA novel. It's not some feel good novel, but it is an excellent summer read. There are some heartbreaking parts, but the ending allows the reader to hope for happiness for Maggie, after all. Also, One Moment is a beautiful story of forgiveness, acceptance, and learning to let go. This is a story that will be enjoyed by both teens and adults.
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