Cori McCarthy delivers an emotionally taut page-turner perfect for fans of E. Lockhart, Jennifer Niven, and Jandy Nelson.
Jaycee is about to accomplish what her older brother Jake couldn't: live past graduation.
Jaycee is dealing with her brother's death the only way she can – by re-creating Jake's daredevil stunts. The ones that got him killed. She's not crazy, okay? She just doesn't have a whole lot of respect for staying alive.
Jaycee doesn't expect to have help on her insane quest to remember Jake. But she's joined by a group of unlikely friends – all with their own reasons for completing the dares and their own brand of dysfunction: the uptight, ex-best friend, the heartbroken poet, the slacker with Peter Pan syndrome, and... Mik. He doesn't talk, but somehow still challenges Jayce to do the unthinkable-reveal the parts of herself that she buried with her brother.
Cori McCarthy's gripping narrative defies expectation, moving seamlessly from prose to graphic novel panels and word art poetry. From the petrifying ruins of an insane asylum to the skeletal remains of the world's largest amusement park, You Were Here takes you on an unforgettable journey of friendship, heartbreak, and inevitable change.
"You Were Here is wrenchingly beautiful in its honest and achingly accurate portrayal of grief and how it breaks us-and the way unconditional friendship puts us back together."?Jo Knowles, award-winning author of See You At Harry's and Read Between the Lines
"The urban explorers of You Were Here dive deep into the forgotten man-made spaces all around them?and their own feelings of loss, love, and fear. McCarthy deftly intertwines the characters' stories, filling them with authentic pain and heartache as well as soaring moments of grace and humor. I dare you to read it!" ?Maggie Lehrman, author of The Cost of All Things
McCarthy (Breaking Sky) delivers a skillful blend of storytelling, emotion, and adrenaline-fueled daring, spun through with romances new and old. Jaycee has accomplished something her daredevil older brother, Jake, never did she lived past graduation. Clinging to his memory, she is determined to follow in his urban explorer footsteps, no matter the risk. She s joined by four friends, all revisiting Jake s old haunts for their own reasons, driven by their own demons. McCarthy rotates among the characters, mixing visual and verbal narratives. Selective mute Mik s chapters are told through comics sequences, while Bishop s brief entries are sketches and graffiti; Natalie contributes a logical, slightly obsessive viewpoint while her party-guy boyfriend, Zach, is immature yet insightful. What follows over several months forces these young adults to take a hard look at their past, present, and future through the lens of urban exploration and its inherent dangers. McCarthy neither shies from nor glamorizes difficult topics like sexual assault, domestic abuse, and suicide, and each character is complexly developed, ensuring relatability for a wide audience. Ages 14 up.
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