There was something I really loved about this book. When I finished it, I couldn't stop thinking about it - which only a book I find highly impacting can do to me. It wasn't the romance that did it - it was the relationships between the characters. I just couldn't stop thinking about Callie and Becca.
Callie, to me, was just a girl who wanted to fit in, but did not want to create waves. She was a dreamer, imagining herself to be the female version of Harry Potter. She was happy with the way she was, who she was, but there was something almost defeatist about her and the way she just accepted her life. She didn't even fight that hard to stop from having to go to Manderley - a place that would test the strength of her character.She lived in the shadow of Becca, a girl who disappeared and, through her disappearance, gave Callie her place at Manderly. For the longest time, she put up with the stares and being compared to the missing girl, never knowing why people were so fascinated with her.
Callie is sweet, but at the same time she has a temper, which she lost during the book every now and then. I didn't realize this until much later, but she had the same spark that Becca did, only hers was quieter and, in a way, even more powerful. Strangely it was a character in the book that woke me up to it.She was poked and prodded by peer pressure - the most obvious in the book being alcohol. And fell victim to pressure again when she fell into the company of Max and Johnny. She was warned away from them by everyone. What was really hard was that she never seeked them out - she just kept running into them. Max and Johnny - the victims of Becca's scheming ways. Is it any wonder Max fell for Callie like a ton of bricks?
I thought Callie was was truly lovely compared to Becca's vileness.But Becca really touched me. I felt so sorry for her. She was so lost and didn't know how to find her way home again. She felt deserted by her parents so decided to do what SHE wanted to do, but most of all, she seemed to be a girl who needed love more than anything else. She did things to gain attention. She was manipulative, selfish, uncaring - all the negative emotive adjectives could almost fit her.Her desperation screamed at me. She did stupid things to keep her popularity, remain very cool, and to hold onto someone she could never have. Max may have been physically attracted to her, but it was never more than that, even though she kept pushing and pushing at him. When she realized the truth she turned to another boy. As much as I wanted to hit her, I also wanted to hug her.Especially at the end. The ending was what wowed me the most.
The plot of the book and the way it was written - in first, then in third - was very appealing. It was easier to follow Callie's and Becca's individual story. Callie's story was more in the now, while Becca's story was in the last year leading up to her disappearance. And it worked.I would recommend this to anyone who likes a little mystery. If you can look past the sleeping with someone when you've only just met them - which can happen by the way - and the other characters, who just seem to be there and are rather flat (the exceptions being Callie, Becca, Max, Johnny and Dana), then I think you'll find it enjoyable.