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Thursday, July 12, 2012

[Review] Gone, Gone, Gone by Hannah Moskowitz

Title: Gone, Gone, Gone
Author: Hannah Moskowitz
Pages: 288 (Hardcover)
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Release Date: April 17, 2012

In the wake of the post-9/11 sniper shootings, fragile love finds a stronghold in this intense, romantic novel from the author of Break and Invincible Summer.

It's a year after 9/11. Sniper shootings throughout the D.C. area have everyone on edge and trying to make sense of these random acts of violence. Meanwhile, Craig and Lio are just trying to make sense of their lives. Craig’s crushing on quiet, distant Lio, and preoccupied with what it meant when Lio kissed him...and if he’ll do it again...and if kissing Lio will help him finally get over his ex-boyfriend, Cody. Lio feels most alive when he's with Craig. He forgets about his broken family, his dead brother, and the messed up world. But being with Craig means being vulnerable...and Lio will have to decide whether love is worth the risk.

This intense, romantic novel from the author of Break and Invincible Summer is a poignant look at what it is to feel needed, connected, and alive.

I wasn't sure what to expect going into this one. The 9/11 setting didn't appeal to me, but I wanted to read more LGBT books, and I had heard good things about this one. Well, starting off it was not what I was expecting at all! Gone, Gone, Gone begins when 15 year old Craig wakes up to find all 14 of his pets gone. Yep, every last animal has left the house after a burglary, which Craig managed to sleep through. It then goes on to follow Craig and his friend Lio as they search for the missing critters. And then, the shootings start.

I really liked the contrast between the two POVs. Craig's chapters are longer, wordy, and sometimes rambling. This is part of his personality though; he's a talker, so it works quite well. Lio, on the other hand, has shorter chapters that get right to the point. He's not one to use many words, and it's something that drives Craig crazy. We also learn more about each boy in the others chapters rather than from his own. That was a very interesting way to get to know to them, and it felt more natural.

Like I said, the immediate post 9/11 setting didn't interest me. While I do admit it was interesting to see how two very different boys dealt with the aftermath, I just couldn't connect. It may seem heartless, or unpatriotic, or whatever word you want to stick there, but I wasn't effected by the events of 9/11. That just made it hard to identify with what they were going through. The sniper shootings had these boys terrified, and they both managed in their own ways. Both of them are also super messed up from other past events, and it was nice to see them trying to move past their pasts.

I did love seeing Craig and Lio's relationship change and develop through both of their eyes. I wanted to grab them both and yell "Just tell him you like him!" Boys! I also really enjoyed Craig's hunt for his lost animals, even in the face of danger. He is so devoted to his pets, giving them all of his love and attention rather than to friends or family. I have pretty mixed feelings on this book over all. It's good, but it just wasn't for me. There's an amazing amount of depth as Craig and Lio work through their various issues, so I would recommend this to fans of YA contemporary and LGBT fiction.

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