You Were Here is a well-written book with a wonderful use of graphics. I was captured by the cover, but the blurb sold me. You Were Here is an original book which kept me fascinated and thrilled all the way through its coming-of-age story. I loved the switching perspective and especially the artwork as well as the comic chapters. I could look at those ages forever! Each POV gives you the chance to look into the characters minds, Cori McCarthy executed this so well. Reading You Were Here was a blast and I recommend it to all you book explorers!
There was always something going on along side the overarching plot. I was surprised as this book didn’t have one clear plot e.g. get the girl or save the world, but if I had to name what the main plot, it would be discovering themselves, forgiveness, secrets and grief. There were five characters, Jaycee (recovering from grief), Mik (a mute in love), Natalie (type A with her whole life planned out), Zach (slowly finding maturity) and Bishop (the heartbroken artist). Each of these characters has problems of their owns and problems with each other. All of these problems can be or are relatable to many teenagers. I love how the characters find their way out of these problems with the help of each other.
What I didn’t love was how confused I got when it came to finishing Jakes dares, or revisiting where he went? His journal wasn’t so clear to me. There there was Jakes ‘marks’. It all made little or no sense to me. To add onto that, with the slow pace on the Jakes-Journal-Exploration-Plotline, details were forgotten as my mind was packed with the details of the many small events which happen in this book.
While the characters did feel real and relatable, there were a few characters (and all secondary characters) which seemed to be trading card characters. This made them predictable, hence where the plot could have been engaging with an important personality reveal, it wasn’t, such as Mik.
What really engaged me was that all these places where Jake went were actually real. Urban Exploring is a passion of mine and pretty much all of these places have made it onto my bucket list. I started exploring abandoned places in my area and didn’t find anything as interesting as an amusement park or a body stain, although there was this great hospital, it was torn down 3 years ago 😦 . This book inspires me to explore more with a great group of friends. It taught me that grief can be overcome with true friendships. I laughed, pondered and almost cried with You Were Here. Something I recommend for contemporary addicts.