A bittersweet (but thankfully the sweet won) story of grief and loss; friendship, and love. I love that’s it’s equally a story of friendship and romance and how the title both literally and figuratively symbolizes Otis’ relationship with the two girls (besides his mom) in his life.
Dara, his friend literally experiences phantom limbs even five years since her arm was amputated and Otis has always been her reprieve, the one who knows exactly how to help her go through imaginary pain. Meg on the other hand is Otis’ metaphorical phantom limbs because by cutting him out of her life, it’s as if Otis was also physically amputated all because of the one moment that caused all the grief and the pain not only in Otis and his family’s life but also of Meg’s and her family’s life as well and nothing has been the same.
I could only sympathize with the characters’ grief because to have lost a loved one so soon is something I don’t think I could endure either. The story did a good job portraying the different ways by which people go through grief. Otis tries to appear indifferent and closed-up while his mom is too transparent. His dad tries to appear as okay and as normal as possible and it’s another story with the Brandts. Their grief practically destroyed their family and Mason’s not even theirs.
But despite the sad themes of the story, it was still mostly an entertaining and fun read. There was plenty of humor especially in the dialogues and the romance is also quite shippable. I am also very happy with how things ended. I even wouldn’t mind reading a sequel to the book.