Sunday, 6 April 2014

Far From You by Tess Sharpe: Review

Far From YouTitle: Far From You
Author: Tess Sharpe
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Buy This Book: Book DepositoryAmazon


Sophie Winters nearly died. Twice.
The first time, she's fourteen, and escapes a near-fatal car accident with scars, a bum leg, and an addiction to Oxy that'll take years to kick.
The second time, she's seventeen, and it's no accident. Sophie and her best friend Mina are confronted by a masked man in the woods. Sophie survives, but Mina is not so lucky. When the cops deem Mina's murder a drug deal gone wrong, casting partial blame on Sophie, no one will believe the truth: Sophie has been clean for months, and it was Mina who led her into the woods that night for a meeting shrouded in mystery.
After a forced stint in rehab, Sophie returns home to a chilly new reality. Mina's brother won't speak to her, her parents fear she'll relapse, old friends have become enemies, and Sophie has to learn how to live without her other half. To make matters worse, no one is looking in the right places and Sophie must search for Mina's murderer on her own. But with every step, Sophie comes closer to revealing all: about herself, about Mina and about the secret they shared. (Goodreads summary.)

Sophie has returned from a three month stay in rehab after the murder of her best friend Mina. When she followed Mina into the woods that night she was under the impression they were meeting up with somebody for a story Mina was working on for an internship at a local paper. But when Mina is killed in front of her and drugs are found on Sophie, everyone believes that Mina's death is just the result of a drug deal gone wrong. No matter how hard Sophie tries she can't get anyone to believe her story, but after her returns from rehab she is determined to uncover the real reason she lost the most important person in her life that night.

Wow! That one word sums up how I felt about Far From You. This book took me completely by surprise and was so much more than I had been expecting. I had only read a brief synopsis and hadn't seen any reviews for this book, so I managed to go into it not knowing all that much about the story. From reading the synopsis, I was certain that this was going to be a typical teenage thriller and that it would probably have quite a predictable plot, and a rather obvious killer. I was so unbelievably wrong on all counts. I definitely wasn't expecting this to be a book that would have me wanting to cry more times than I could count. I ended up loving this story from the beginning to the end.

Far From You instantly hooked me and it did not want to let me go the whole time I was reading it. It skips back and forth between the past and the present. This worked so well and allows you to really come to love Mina as a character until you're almost grieving her death as much as Sophie is. The flashbacks were such an important part to the story, as they slowly help to build towards the big reveal at the end. The characters are a mystery in themselves, you have to get to the end and get through all the flashbacks in order to try and even understand them.

Sophie and Mina were both very complex characters and we slowly learn more about them as the book goes on. It takes a while for you to realise that not everything is as it seems when it comes to the characters in the book. I loved that you don't know everything right away, that it takes quite a while for certain parts of them to be revealed to you. I was eager for the next flashback because I wanted to learn all I could about these two. Sophie is a drug addict and knows she will be for the rest of her life, but she is no longer using and she plans to keep it that way. After a car accident left her with a series of scars, a limp and severe pain that won't go away, Sophie was given prescription drugs in order to help her deal with it. But eventually the drugs became her way to escape and she has to hide her growing addiction from the people she loves. Sophie struggles to accept that she is an addict and to face her problem and I thought that part of the story was handled so well.

I'm not crying, I'm not crying, I AM NOT CRYING.
Mina was beyond complex, she was just a total mindf**k for me as a reader and for Sophie as a character. Mina moved to town with her mum and brother Trevor when she was a little girl, not too long after the death of her father. Mina and Sophie have been best friends since that first day they met and have always relied on each other. It was hard watching Sophie try to come to terms with life without Mina. This was one aspect of the book that I thought was done exceptionally well. You felt Sophie's loss so much that it starts to make you feel like you just lost one of the most important people in the world to you. I was not expecting this book to play with my emotions so much; not cool Tess Sharpe, not cool!

How I thought I'd react...
How I actually reacted...
The whole 'whodunnit' aspect of the book really surprised me because it took such a back seat to the rest of the story. It was always there in the background but wasn't the part of the book that I really concentrated on. I never felt that thriller aspect in this, I was never fearful for what could happen to Sophie if she kept digging. I have to admit that the big reveal was a little anticlimactic in my mind. It took a long time to get to it and in that time I had actually come up with some brilliant theories and great character choices for who the killer was and why. So, I have to admit to being a little disappointed when it turned out to be nowhere near as shocking or 'what-the-actual-hell' worthy as I had first assumed it would be.

For me this wasn't a thriller or a book about hunting down a killer. This book was about relationships between people, it was about friendship and love. It was about discovering who you are as a person and being able to find a way to come to terms with that and love that part of yourself. It was about having to accept who you are even if others can't. It was just a ridiculously beautiful and complex story and I absolutely loved it. I recommend you go and buy this book and get acquainted with all your feels, because you are going to need them.

4.5/5 Butterflies

A complex and beautiful story that deals with so much more than hunting down a killer. It only loses half a point because the big reveal was a little disappointing and anticlimactic. I recommend you all go buy this book, it was extraordinary. 

Sums up my feels by the end of it.


*I received a copy of this novel from the author/publisher/publicist via Edelweiss in exchange for a free and honest review and received no monetary compensation for this review.

12 comments:

  1. OMG I THINK I NEED THIS THEN. I do love thrillers, but what I love even more are books that are completely gobbled up by the characters. Character driven FTW! The switching back and forth from present/past worries me a little...I tend to get lost. But it's worth the risk. This sounds so incredible!

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    1. You NEEEEED it!!!!! ;) I would absolutely love to hear what you make of it, so I definitely recommend you find time to get to it. It switches back and forth between different points in the past and present A LOT, but it is totally worth it.

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  2. Ooh…this sounds really good, I'm adding it to my TBR list right now. Great review! ~Pam

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    1. You definitely should get this one, I'd love to see what you make of it. :)

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  3. Sounds great! I love that Mina is a mindfuck. The characters sound pretty great in general. I'm interested in reading about Sophie and how she deals with her addiction. The plot doesn't seem like the best, but the characters seem to make up for it. Great review!

    -P.E. @ The Sirenic Codex

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    1. She is a total and utter mindfuck! The characters more than make up for what it is lacking in terms of action. I really ended up loving this one, brilliant book.

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  4. Oh man I'm glad you enjoyed this one :) I have been waiting to see the consensus of the crowd before I dive in. I can't say I'm not disappointed that this is not a killer mystery :/ but I love realistic fictions of growth, coming to terms with loss, friendships, etc. So that's all good :)

    Angel @ Spare Reads

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    1. It is a killer mystery, but it is just about characters more so. I really ended up loving this one, even if I did think it was lacking in the mystery aspect.

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  5. Wow! This book is on my TBR list but I had no idea it struck such a chord. Now I'm moving it up my list! Great review!

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    1. It's a really brilliant book, I'd love to hear what you make of it! :)

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  6. Fantastic review! I have been looking forward to this one. So thanks for getting me pumped up!
    Happy reading!

    Brittany @ This is the Story of My(Reading) Life

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    1. I really hope you love it, it's definitely a new favourite of mine :)

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