The Story is About + young adult

The Clearing by Heather Davis

The Clearing

by Heather Davis

Release Date: April 12, 2010
Publisher: Graphia
Age Group: Young Adult
Pages: 228
Source: Publisher
Interest: summary
Challenge: None

Amy, a sixteen-year-old recovering from an abusive relationship, moves to the country to start a new life with her aunt–all she wants is for everything to be different. In the clearing at the back of Aunt Mae’s property, she makes an amazing discovery—Henry, a boy stuck in the endless summer of 1944. Henry and his world become Amy’s refuge and she begins to learn that some moments are worth savoring. But when the past and present come crashing together, both of them must find the courage to face what is meant to be, even if it means losing each other forever.

(Summary from Goodreads)
I gave this novel a three star rating however, a two and half star rating would better reflect my feelings.

This story just didn't have much going for it. The Clearing was beautifully told and the Amy and Henry's relationship was particularly compelling, unfortunately those were the only aspects that the story that made a lasting impression.

Amy & Henry's relationship is the one thing that 'made' this story for me. Watching their relationship grow and evolve, the choices they ultimately had to make for each other, that was powerful. It wasn't a head over heels, crazy obsessive love... it was delicate and thoughtful. The kind of love that can be everlasting.

Unfortunately the aspect of love wasn't enough to carry the whole novel. The plot itself was semi-predictable as well as painfully slow. There just wasn't enough intrigue or explanation to keep me hooked in to story. I was also disappointed in in Amy's decision to run away from her situation. (An abusive relationship.) Not that I am implying in any way that Amy should have stayed in the relationship with her abuser, but running away isn't the answer. As someone who went through an experience like Amy's, I wish this issue would have been handled differently.

The characters all seemed flat and overdone. Amy a girl with no real defining characteristics... we learn nothing about who she is, or what she likes, only that she doesn't trust anyone. Yet despite her elusive nature every male she encounters throws himself at her. Why exactly? I have yet to understand. And poor Jackson, although I didn't comprehend why he was even in the novel, I did feel some sort of empathy toward him, so that must count for something...

Perhaps I'm just disappointed because I had high expectations. That is something that I try to refrain from doing... but alas... I couldn't help it.

The ending was perhaps the most disappointing thing of all. I don't want to be spoilery so I won't say too much. It just seemed that some things ended all too quickly while leaving almost everything else unresolved. The ending... in lack for a better word was just awkward.

book review, Heather Davis, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, novel, and more:

The Clearing by Heather Davis + young adult