Through to You by Emily Hainsworth
Main character, Cam, and his dead girlfriend, Vic, both took me by surprise in this debut novel about loss, choice and a parallel world. This book is young adult in that it is rooted in and around High School and football, and the story is adult in its description and use of grief, anger and language. No vampires, no werewolves. No monsters but the fallible human variety. Though the book is a quick read, I left it appreciating its thoughtful approach to death, relationships and love. I found I had far more sympathy for the characters at the end of the read than the beginning.
Spoilers. Don’t read the following paragraph if you don’t want to know the details of the novel.
Cam’s injuries after the car accident in which Vic was killed are such that he can no longer play football. Literally cut off from his support, he faces the specter of grief nearly alone. While visiting Vic’s memorial at the crash site, Cam meets Nina, also grieving. They both quickly discover Nina is from a parallel world in which Vic still lives. Cam, driven by grief to see Vic alive, crosses into this different world. But this world is subtly different from Cam’s. And the subtle differences start to add up. If he can choose a new version of Vic, will he? Would she choose him? These and other questions fill Cam’s mind drawing him into the inevitable conclusion.
I had difficulty putting this book down. The characters drew me into their world and thoughts and I didn’t want to leave. If you enjoy young adult fantasy fiction, you’ll enjoy this read.