Things I'm Seeing Without You - Peter Bognanni | ARC Review

Pages: 336
Format: Physical
Publication: Dial Books

How I got the copy: Penguin Random House Canada
Rating: 4/5

Seventeen-year-old Tess Fowler has just dropped out of high school. She can barely function after learning of Jonah’s death. Jonah, the boy she’d traded banter with over texts and heartfelt e-mails.

Jonah, the first boy she'd told she loved and the first boy to say it back. 

Jonah, the boy whose suicide she never saw coming. 

Tess continues to write to Jonah, as a way of processing her grief and confusion. But for now she finds solace in perhaps the unlikeliest of ways: by helping her father with his new alternative funeral business, where his biggest client is . . . a prized racehorse?

As Tess’s involvement in her father’s business grows, both find comfort in the clients they serve and in each other. But love, loss, and life are so much more complicated than Tess ever thought. Especially after she receives a message that turns her life upside down.

I found this book very interesting. I love reading contemporary romances and this one is everything you'd expect in a YA contemporary romance but it also covers a topic I've personally never read in a YA contemporary romance before, which I'm not going to get into because it'll spoil the book.

The main character, Tess, is grieving the death of her sort of boyfriend, Jonah. They met at a party about a year ago and they've been communicating mostly through text messages since then. Tess drops out of high school after finding out Jonah commits suicide and starts living with her father and helping him with his new funeral business while she keeps the tragedy secret from her family.

While Tess is figuring out how to live and move forward after the tragedy, she also meets some people along the way that help her understand life and herself a little bit more. This book is exciting, intriguing, and funny while covering the topics of grief, love, and family.

*I've been seeing reviews saying this book brushed off mental illness instead of developing it more but the main character didn't have the mental illness. What the main character experienced and her thoughts about the situations were from an outsiders perspective and it seems quite accurate.


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