It hit too close to home. Whenever I encounter one of Jude’s dad’s breakdowns, I am transported to the time my dad had a mild stroke three years ago and for two weeks he had difficulty in speech and confused simple terms like “hat” became “soap”. I was completely heartbroken even though my dad was already 70 at that time and those were only temporary symptoms. He recovered quickly.
I could not imagine how devastating it must be for Jude to have a father who seems vibrant and healthy in the outside when inside, his Alzheimer’s is slowly eating away his memories making him act weird or “crazy” in the eyes of the public. Dang this little book. I didn’t know it was going to be an emotional read. I thought it was just another YA cutesy romance because look at that cover.
Ms. Sarah Ockler is really good at combining heartbreaking and romantic in her stories. I remember how it was kind of the same with Twenty Boy Summer. At the surface, her stories seem simple and common, but as you read on, they tell something very profound that I seem to connect with the characters and their experiences on a primal level.
The romance aspect is also interesting and quite funny. How all Jude’s sisters forced her to make an oath to never allow a Vargas boy in their lives because two of them broke the hearts of two of her sisters and that should have been enough. But as the line on the cover says, “desire follows no rule” so, of course, Jude inevitably falls for Emilio Vargas. Can’t blame the girl, guy is quite adorable. Even her parents like him.
There is no happy ending with this treacherous disease for sure but the author wrote a decent, very acceptable conclusion to the story that consoled my heart very well.