Monday, June 18, 2018

The Opposite of Here by Tara Altebrando-- She got me on this one

The Opposite of Here

Natalie is on a cruise for her 17th birthday with her parents and best girlfriends.  This "sail-a-bration" is meant to get her out of the sad state she's been in since losing her boyfriend in an accident a few months ago-- but Natalie is just going through the motions to make her friends and family happy.

Then on the first night of the cruise, she meets a guy!!  And she feels SOMETHING instead of the nothing she's been feeling for so long.  The problem(s):

--She doesn't even know his name.
--He's gone missing after saying cryptic things
--They're now doing a headcount on the boat
--Rumors are flying of a passenger overboard
--Her friends don't understand why she's getting involved

In the past few years, I've read The Leaving and The Possible-- and I thought both had interesting concepts and twisty reveals.  Reading this book, I could totally tell it was an Altebrando book.  There's just something about the way her books flow and the way the main character isn't exactly someone who you want to like, that makes her books stand out.

Natalie is on a cruise and meets a guy-- which is exciting because she's been very unfeeling since the death of her boyfriend.  Before she can even ask his name, he's gone.  He stood her up after saying odd things and taking an even odder selfie.  When the cruise ship starts doing a headcount, Natalie is convinced he jumped.  Her friends are more skeptical.  The mystery is too strong for Natalie to ignore, and as she gets deeper into the mysterious boy's life & family, things get complicated and romantic at the same time.

Natalie was one of those girls that I root for despite the fact that she got on my last nerve.  She really would rather believe that a dude jumped than think that maybe he just ditched her.  She was obsessed with the entire weirdo-dude thing to the point where she wasn't enjoying her vacation or being present with her friends in any way.  That alone made me want to shake her.  Snap out of it, mind your business, and actually BE IN THE MOMENT with your girls!!!

The friends were a whole other thing.  I went back and forth from being super annoyed at them for not being supportive (and pissed at them for hiding shit), to agreeing that I would've been annoyed at Natalie too.  I do think this book has some strong friendship & forgiveness messages that were heartwarming-- and I liked them!

What I loved: Holy Jesus Moly.  Every single time I started to get bored with the "missing" guy, the author would drop a bomb to get me back into it.  When the ending came, it felt like a completely normal ending-- better than normal even because it wasn't the typical "a guy fixed my life" ending-- but then I read the last page.  And !!!!!!!!!!  That last page made me remember why I love Tara Altebrando's books.  She GOES for it.  She made me read a whole book, feel good about it-- and then it got flipped turned upside down in 2 paragraphs making me question EVERYTHING!

OVERALL: I am in it for the twists!!  The author's books rarely have any characters in them that I like, but they make up for it with PLOT.  I love reading a book that tries for something different-- something shocking.  I totally 100% recommend this book.  It's so SUMMER and TWISTY and ADDICTING.

Date Published: 6/5/2018
How I got this book: Thanks for Bloomsbury for sending me an advanced copy to read and honestly review!
Publisher: Bloomsbury YA

Add this to your To-Read List!!

My Rating: 4.5/5

Character: Natalie
Book: Me and Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews

  • Maybe Natalie could get some insight on how to film their 2-line movies-- on second thought, maybe not.  But she probably would like reading about Greg and Earl making the worst movies of all-time.


  1. I really enjoyed The Leaving and how the ending was not something I had ever considered but was totally plausible, so I'm excited to see the twists in this one!

    1. I really like the ideas this author has. It's not always perfect, but I enjoy reading something that tries to do something different.

  2. This one sounds really interesting! I think I'd be annoyed too that she is ignoring her friends for this guy but a mystery is afoot! I love good twists, too. May have to see if I can get this at my library.

  3. This sounds like a good book. Cruises are fun, but I don't think they'd be that much fun if I lost a cute guy I just met. Thanks for the review.

  4. The only thing that would have made this book perfect was a slight change in the ending but I won’t spoil anything so you’ll have to read it for yourself. It is definitely a book I will recommend to any Ya, Thriller reader.