Title: Amelia Unabridged by Ashley Schumacher
Publisher: Wednesday Books
Genre: Contemporary, Young Adult
Length: 296 pages
Book Rating: B+
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley
Sparks fly between two teens as they grapple with grief, love, and the future in this unforgettable debut novel sure to entice fans of Jandy Nelson and Jennifer E. Smith
Eighteen-year-old Amelia Griffin is obsessed with the famous Orman Chronicles, written by the young and reclusive prodigy N. E. Endsley. They’re the books that brought her and her best friend Jenna together after Amelia’s father left and her family imploded. So when Amelia and Jenna get the opportunity to attend a book festival with Endsley in attendance, Amelia is ecstatic. It’s the perfect way to start off their last summer before college.
In a heartbeat, everything goes horribly wrong. When Jenna gets a chance to meet the author and Amelia doesn’t, the two have a blowout fight like they’ve never experienced. And before Amelia has a chance to mend things, Jenna is killed in a freak car accident. Grief-stricken, and without her best friend to guide her, Amelia questions everything she had planned for the future.
When a mysterious, rare edition of the Orman Chronicles arrives, Amelia is convinced that it somehow came from Jenna. Tracking the book to an obscure but enchanting bookstore in Michigan, Amelia is shocked to find herself face-to-face with the enigmatic and handsome N. E. Endsley himself, the reason for Amelia’s and Jenna’s fight and perhaps the clue to what Jenna wanted to tell her all along.
Ashley Schumacher’s devastating and beautiful debut, Amelia Unabridged, is about finding hope and strength within yourself, and maybe, just maybe, falling in love while you do it.
Amelia Unabridged by Ashley Schumacher is an endearing young adult novel of healing.
Amelia Griffin and Jenna Williams are best friends who are enjoying their last summer before college. Their first adventure is a book conference where Amelia will finally get to meet her favorite author N. E. Endsley. She is devastated when he abruptly cancels his appearance. After Jenna makes a startling confession, Amelia is absolutely furious. Her anger soon turns to regret and sorrow after Jenna’s death in a car accident. After receiving a package from a bookstore in Michigan, Amelia decides to go to the small town of Lochbrook to try to figure out who sent her the book and why. A week in the magical town not only helps her work through her grief. Amelia also finds love but will someone else’s expectations for her future prevent her from following her heart?
Amelia’s life drastically changes when her parents divorce. After a chance meeting at the local bookstore, she and Jenna are soon inseparable. Amelia’s home life is miserable so she is thrilled Jenna’s parents’ treat her as part of their family. After Jenna’s death, Amelia is grateful for their support as she tries to find meaning in the unexpected gift of a special book.
Amelia’s journey to Lochbrook contains many surprises and delights. She is enchanted with the quirky but inviting bookstore and her warm welcome by the store’s owner. Amelia is also delighted by her unanticipated new friendships. She is quite charmed by a new acquaintance but with the weight of expectation hanging over her, Amelia is faced with an untenable decision.
Amelia Unabridged is a heartwarming young adult novel with a great cast of eccentric characters. Amelia is a well-rounded young woman who is easy to root for. The secondary characters are well-developed and likable. The storyline is engaging which makes for a fast-paced read. With a late in the story conflict, Ashley Schumacher brings this delightful novel to a heartfelt conclusion. I thoroughly enjoyed and highly recommend this marvelous novel to teen and adult readers.