How do you tell someone who hates you and blames you for the death of his best friend that you miss him?
From the bestselling teen and young adult author of Cinder & Ella comes a new heart-wrenching romance sure to bring all the feels.
The tragic death of Spencer Schott unravels the lives of the two people he loved most—his girlfriend, Bailey, and his best friend, Wes. Secrets and guilt from that fateful night keep both Bailey and Wes from overcoming Spencer’s loss and moving on with their lives.
Now, nearly a year later, both Bailey and Wes are still so broken over what happened that Spencer can’t find peace in the afterlife. In order to put his soul to rest, he’s given one chance to come back and set things right...even if that means setting up his girlfriend with his best friend.
With the emotional resonance of Jellicoe Road and the magical realism of The Lovely Bones, The Ghost of You and Me is a story about overcoming grief, finding redemption for past mistakes, and the healing power of friendship and love. Fans of John Green, Sarah Dessen, and Nicholas Sparks are sure to love this haunting new tale from Kelly Oram.
This is a clean young adult romance stand alone novel that reads like contemporary drama romance and has just a touch of magical realism.
To begin with, I have to say that while I think Kelly Oram is an amazingly gifted writer, after her last book I had about given up on reading her books. I'm a girl that prefers her books clean- free from swearing and sexual content and Kelly really pushes that boundary for me. (yes, I realize that this is a personal preference and one not shared by everyone) Then I saw the blurb for this book and it says "clean" and I debated because I really wanted to read this book and I really wanted to love it but I was unsure based on all my previous experiences with her books. I decided to give it one more shot because, hello? It's Kelly Oram and did I mention that I think she is an amazing writer? She has a gift for making characters seem so real and vibrant in stories that completely suck you in.
This story is a bit unlike any of Kelly's others. I loved the grittier, messier, more complicated feelings and emotions from both Bailey and Wes. Feelings of loss, guilt, anger and misunderstanding were swirling around with love, trust, forgiveness and overcoming. As the story unfolds, bit by bit, I was completely taken with Bailey, Wes and yes, even Spencer the ghost. I thought there was an excellent balance between the heavier issues and the lighter side of friendship, high school and young love. This book definitely kept me engaged- my interest, and my feelings. I love when that happens in a book!
I'm so glad I read this book! It was one of the better ones I've read this month which is saying something because June has been an awesome review month. :)
Content: references to teenage party with drinking, mild innuendo
- I received a copy of this book in conjunction with this review tour. All opinions expressed are my own.
Enjoy the following excerpt:
“What is he doing here?” Liz whispers from somewhere behind me. The sound is distant, barely registering in my mind.
“What do you mean? Who is he?” Charlotte asks again.
Wes Delaney is here. I can’t believe what I’m seeing. It’s been almost a year. He dropped out of school a couple of weeks after Spencer’s accident and disappeared from Columbia High’s social radar. My heart pounds at the sight of him.
Wes pays the lunch lady for his food, and when he turns around, his eyes immediately land on me as if he already knew which direction to look. My mouth goes dry when our eyes meet. I didn’t know how much I’ve missed him until this exact moment. My entire body yearns to reconnect with him. And yet…I have no business feeling that way. I squash those feelings and let my old friend, guilt, swamp me. Guilt is all I deserve where Wes is concerned. Still, I can’t look away from him.
He seems different—older and hardened. His head is shaved nearly bald. Only a dark layer of fuzz remains that is no longer than the five o’clock shadow ghosting his face. It’s a surprisingly good look for him. While Spencer eventually outgrew his awkward tween stage (mostly), Wes never experienced one. He was always hot. Now, he’s just plain sexy.
With his hair so short, his dark eyes and long lashes stand out more than normal. And he’s so built that even from my seat across the cafeteria I can tell his body is rock hard beneath his tight plain white T-shirt and low-hung jeans. He looks tough. Jaded.
“What’s he doing here, Bailey?”
I ignore Trisha’s question. I couldn’t speak right now, even if I knew the answer—which I most definitely do not. I can’t breathe. Can’t think. I’m locked in his stare, and I can’t decipher the look on his face.
Where has he been for the last year? What is he doing here now? What is he thinking? Why can’t he take his eyes off me? Is he going to tell everyone what really happened that night?
Feeling sick, I jump up from my seat and run from the cafeteria as if my life depends on it. Right now, it feels like it does.
When I was put on medication after Spencer’s death, numbness replaced the devastating pain and heartache I suffered. I haven’t felt anything for months. But as I burst into the first-floor girls’ bathroom, it feels as if all the emotions I should have been experiencing all this time hit me at once. It’s crippling.
I look in the mirror, hoping for a clue as to what I’m feeling right now. I only see panic. I’m going to lose it. Leaning back against one of the cold tile walls, I slide to the ground. My knees come up to my chest, and I bury my face in them, wrapping my arms tightly around my legs while I force air in and out of my lungs.
“Breathe,” I whisper to myself. “Breathe, Bailey. It’s okay.”
Author Kelly Oram Kelly Oram wrote her first novel at age fifteen--a fan fiction about her favorite music group, The Backstreet Boys, for which her family and friends still tease her. She's obsessed with reading, talks way too much, and likes to eat frosting by the spoonful. She lives outside of Phoenix, Arizona with her husband, four children, and her cat, Mr. Darcy.
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