Since You've Been Gone
Emily has always been the quiet, subdued half of the Emily and Sloane pair. For two years, it’s pretty much been wherever you see one girl, you’ll find the other one. Emily is looking forward to another fun summer with Sloane when one day Sloane and her family disappear. Nobody is at the house, and Sloane doesn’t answer her phone or any of the texts Emily sends her. There’s not really anyone who can help Emily. Her parents are generally wonderful but they’re spending the summer writing a play and they are so engrossed in their work that they are oblivious to life around them.
When Emily receives a letter from Sloane, she eagerly opens it, hoping that it contains an explanation for her disappearance. Instead, it has a list:
1. Kiss a Stranger
2. Go Skinny-Dipping
3. Steal Something
4. Break Something
6. Ride a Dern Hors, Ya Cowpoke
7. 55 S. Ave. Ask for Mona
8. The Backless Dress and Somewhere to Wear It.
9. Dance Until Dawn
10. Share Some Secrets in the Dark.
11. Hug a Jamie
12. Apple Picking at Night
13. Sleep Under the Stars
Emily hopes that if she completes the list, she will be able to find Sloane. As she starts working her way through it, she realizes that the list was created in order to make her feel brave and to experience the world in a bold, new way. While on her journey she makes some great new friends and discovers a lot about herself.
Morgan Matson has written 3 books and I’ve read and loved them all. As in all of her books, there is a romantic element and even though it was obvious whom Emily was going to end up with, it didn’t matter and it wasn’t really the point of the book. This was a book about stepping outside your comfort level and doing it without the most important person in your life. I think it will resonate with many teenagers who will be clamoring to read it.