Pen, Cat and Will met on the first day of college and soon became an inseparable trio. Best friends through thick and thin through college. After parting ways in the aftermath of a major fight, Pen and Will each receive an uncharacteristically bland e-mail from Cat asking them to come to the college reunion. When Pen and Will arrive, they find out that there is more to Cat’s e-mail than they thought. Sent by Cat’s husband in hopes of finding out where Cat is, the three unlikely partners set off to find their best friend/wife all while working through the issues of the demise of their friendship.
The book is told mostly through flashbacks with Pen as the dominant focal point. Although I like the use of flashbacks to fill in gaps, I felt that this book was filled to the brim with them. The reasons that the three friends broke-up felt weak, nothing that should have sustained 6 years of silence between the three. I also felt that Pen was very emotionally unstable, but in a way easy to relate to. Having to learn to deal with the grief of her father passing away expectantly, I could readily relate to her. Granted, she is no Cornelia Brown. Maris de los Santos did a good job of creating characters that could be easily approachable by any reader. From emotional Pen, to free-wheeling Cat, and frat boy Jason. I’m not sure what 1-word descriptor to use for Will…any suggestions?
I read the book in one day, I wanted to know what was going to happen next. What was the next clue to finding Cat, would they find her, and where would they find her?
The romance set up in the beginning of the novel between two of the characters was pretty predictable, but in no way less enjoyable to see unfold. I did find that the progression of Pen and Will’s relationship to heavily mirror that of Cornelia Brown and Teo Sandoval from Love Walked In. I found the ending of the book to be somewhat disappointing though. Mostly in regards to Cat’s character. So much of what we know about her is told through flashbacks, and nostalgic reminiscences for about 90% of the novel. Cat is made to seem larger than life (despite her physically small size). This fell flat for me towards the end of the novel. It felt as if the characters were too reliant on their own views of Cat to really see her for what she is.
There are elements in this book that make it a good read, but there are also elements of the book that make it frustrating and disappointing. Fans of Marisa de los Santos’ previous works, Love Walked In & Belong to Me, will appreciate her unique and wonderful writing style. The plot of the story was what bugged me the most, even though I kept reading to see what would happen next. The story felt unbelievable, although the characters felt real, if that makes any sense.