Friday, April 8, 2011

The Big Crunch by Pete Hautman YP FIC HAUTMAN

June and Wes have one class together and walk the same way home, but never seem to connect. June and Wes have a shared orbit of school and a mutual friend, Wes has known for years and June dates out of a mix of pity and convenience. Until, one day June’s and Wes’s worlds and heads collide in a convenience mart and their lives are forever altered in this funny, sad, and meaningful look at first love and its relationship to the final and unavoidable destruction of the entire universe.

This is one of the saddest, sweetest romances I have ever read that didn’t involve vampires, werewolves, or ghosts! Nobody dies or kills anyone for love, but this story rings truer and deeper than most any other teen romance out there. June and Wes are fully fleshed out characters that exist for reasons other than to be part of a star crossed pair. Hautman has written two very distinct and interesting characters that really mesh. The story is told from their dual lives and you get to know both halves of the pair apart well before they are together. This makes their romance both more believable and affecting. Hautman also did a splendid job building the secondary characters in their orbits, so June and Wes don’t seem like the stars of a movie about their life and feel like real teens. The highs and lows of the relationship are handled realistically and make for plenty of drama without resorting to melodrama. This is one of my favorite relationship books I’ve read and highly recommend it to anyone that likes realistic Young Adult novels about love. If you enjoy it, definitely check out How to Say Goodbye in Robot by Natalie Standiford YP FIC (STANDIFO).

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