“I’ve got some questions for you. Was this story written about me?”
“Yes or no?”
I shrugged again, finally earning a little scowl, which somehow made the girl even more pretty. It brought a bloom to her pale cheeks and made sharp shelves of her cheekbones.
“It’s very rude not to answer simple questions,” she said.
I gestured for my journal, but she still wouldn’t give it to me. So I took out my pen and wrote I can’t on my palm.
Then, in tiny letters below it, I finished the thought: Now don’t you feel like a jerk?
Parker Santé hasn’t spoken a word in five years. While his classmates plan for bright futures, he skips school to hang out in hotels, killing time by watching the guests. But when he meets a silver-haired girl named Zelda Toth, a girl who claims to be quite a bit older than she looks, he’ll discover there just might be a few things left worth living for.
Rating: 4 stars
“Saudade. It’s the sadness you feel for something that isn’t gone yet, but will be. The sadness of lost causes. The sadness of being alive.”
This book has really put me at a loss for words. I’m not sure if I’m losing my judgmental touch or if this just successfully put me in “my feels” without any of those “feels” being angry, pissed off, or flat out over it. Whatever the case, I’m pretty happy I got the chance to read this book.
For once in my lifetime, I had no issue with any of the characters. I thought that Parker was very sweet (albeit emotionally unstable) and his condition and past made me want to just wrap him up in a hug and never let go. Zelda kind of reminded me of your average manic pixie girl, but without the average part. Wallach took it to a whole new level by also giving Zelda a condition and trust me, you won’t guess this one. These two characters didn’t feel like they were made for each other but they felt like they were made to influence each other. I’m not one to go for insta-love stories, so for this to be as fast paced as it was, I was surprisingly supportive of the relationship blossoming between Parker and Zelda.
This being said, I think that making the whole book be set over the course of one weekend was very risky because trying to rush a story and fit everything into such a tight timeline can be really difficult and, if not done correctly, can turn out feeling too fast without enough else going on. But, I credit Wallach for somehow making it all come together perfectly. I also really loved that the whole book is supposed to be a college essay. I would put a spoiler tag there but this was completely evident to me throughout the entire book, so I don’t really think it’s much of a spoiler.
Final thoughts: only read if you are prepared to get your heart broken by fictional characters.