I can honestly say I was pleasantly surprised with this one. Bought on a whim, I put this off for a week or two before finally getting around to reading it. And I'm glad I finally got around to it. Since I have taken a bit of a break from young adult novels, this was a good pick to start up again. I'll Be Here was fun and entertaining. Easily read in a day.
Willow can really pick 'em. I was able to feel all the emotions that Willow went through. Some more fun than others. But I was heartbroken when her boyfriend of two years dumps her and she realized that her so called friends might not really have been her friends. I'm glad that Alex was in the picture. I was ecstatic when Alex popped into the picture, even when Willow was resistant. From the first page the author paints a picture. A picture of a boy and a girl. A girl who is in love with a boy. A boy who didn't really seem to take the time to get to know the girl he was with. Dustin seemed to be oblivious to many things about Willow. All of which Willow realizes in the steakhouse. Things don't bode well for Dustin. And for the rest of the story, we get bits and pieces more of just how Dustin, the fool, has taken Willow for granted.
I won't lie. One of my favorite things about this book was that it wasn't really about finding revenge on Dustin. While it does come in to play a bit, it's not the center. Instead, we see something truly amazing. We see a teenage girl examine her life and make life altering decisions. Willow takes quite a journey to find out who she is. And more importantly, who she wants to be. Willow is not shallow and bitter. Well, maybe at first. But when it mattered, she made some very grown up decisions. All in all, this was a great book for a lazy afternoon.