Thursday, August 29, 2013

The Infinite Moment of Us - Review

The Infinite Moment of Us

By: Lauren Myracle

Expected Publication: August 20th 2013 by Amulet Books

336 pages

Genre: YA, Contemporary

Source: Publisher via NetGalley (Thank you!)

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Goodreads description--For as long as she can remember, Wren Gray’s goal has been to please her parents. But as high school graduation nears, so does an uncomfortable realization: Pleasing her parents once overlapped with pleasing herself, but now... not so much. Wren needs to honor her own desires, but how can she if she doesn’t even know what they are?

Charlie Parker, on the other hand, is painfully aware of his heart’s desire. A gentle boy with a troubled past, Charlie has loved Wren since the day he first saw her. But a girl like Wren would never fall for a guy like Charlie—at least not the sort of guy Charlie believes himself to be.

And yet certain things are written in the stars. And in the summer after high school, Wren and Charlie’s souls will collide. But souls are complicated, as are the bodies that house them...

Sexy, romantic, and oh-so-true to life, this is an unforgettable look at first love from one of young adult fiction’s greatest writers.

I think this is one of those situations where the title drew me in more than the book cover or the description. Descriptions can be misleading, and so I don't put as much stock into them as I used to. When looking at requesting a book for review from NetGalley, I've gotten to where I always check the Goodreads overall rating before I hit the button for "request." This is just one step to prevent me from requesting something that looks good to me but might end up being a dud. By the time I was actually approved for The Infinite Moment of Us the Goodreads rating had dropped to 3.4. AH!!!! That's a sure-fire sign to run for the hills. BUT, I try to complete the books I request from publishers if at all possible, and the release date for The Infinite Moment of Us was quickly approaching.

I picked it up with pretty low expectations considering the Goodreads rating, and I pretty much read it in one sitting. I had to put it down for a couple of hours, but I still completed the read in one day. This is always a plus in my book because I really hate when a book bogs me down and is slow going. However, being a fast read isn't enough to make this book good.

I will say that it was obvious to me from the beginning that this book had "issues." There's an almost insta-love aspect and a definitely cheesiness that is hard to overcome. And this is coming from ME, I'm normally a huge fan of cheesy. Well...apparently I have a cheesy line and The Infinite Moment of Us crossed it.

"Something had passed between them. Something he couldn't explain, and it had made him forget that he didn't believe in souls. Anyway, who was he kidding? He didn't believe in love, either, but this he knew: He loved Wren Gray. He'd loved her forever, it seemed."

"I think our souls touched..."

I think enough said about cheesy and unrealistic.

Another struggle for me with The Infinite Moment of Us was the use of dialect. This book isn't inundated with it as some books are, but words and phrases like "muzzy," "supah slo-mo yo," "sumpin'," "you lookin' good," "gangstaspeak," etc are used enough to make me cringe.

Ok so let's talk characters.

Wren is described as a people pleaser, a do-gooder, a worrier, and watcher. She's followed the path that her overbearing parents have laid out for her to the point where her parents don't even know her true self. She decides to stand up for herself and take the path that she wants to take, but at times this felt more like an escape than something she actually felt driven and wanted to do. I did relate to Wren in a lot of ways, even her negative characteristics.

Charlie is currently living with foster parents, Chris and Pamela, who would love nothing more than to adopt him. He also has a disabled foster brother who he adores and would do just about anything for. Charlie's had a troubled past, and he's seeking a way to find significance. He does so by protecting his little brother, working in Chris's cabinet shop (who strangely seems to make more furniture than cabinets), and trying to reach out to his messed up, crazy ex-girlfriend Starrla.

In a lot of ways, I completely relate to this story and to Wren more than a lot of other characters I've read. I've dated the guy with the crazy ex-girlfriend. The guy who can't stop trying to help said crazy ex-girlfriend even to the detriment of our relationship. I've seen how much crazy ex-girlfriend truly needs help and have felt how selfish it is to want boyfriend to leave her in his past so that we could move forward together. I almost feel like I've lived this story--at least this part. I intimately know the guy who can't just walk away from someone who is hurting, even if that someone is hurting someone else that he loves. It's a really messed up situation and I have STRONG feelings about these types of situations. Because of that The Infinite Moment of Us brought those back out of me.

However, Wren and Charlie's relationship had an immature feeling to it to me. So much so that I literally cringe at their decision to move forward physically. These two kids are just not ready for the kinds of issues that come up when this level of physicality is involved in a relationship.

Also, The Infinite Moment of Us was another book that just ended. I won't say it was a cliffhanger, but I just felt like the ending was rushed and uncomfortable. And just over very abruptly.

While I could completely relate to a lot of aspects of The Infinite Moment of Us, the pet peeves, cheesiness, and missing pieces were enough to drag this one down in my mind. I completely understand why the ratings are so low. The best I feel I can do for The Infinite Moment of Us is to give it 3 stars. And that's quite possibly a stretch only given because of the crazy ex-girlfriend emotions that it raised for me.

Have you read The Infinite Moment of Us? What did you think? Let me know!


  1. OMG "our souls touched" *cringe* I like cheesy too but that's a little too much. I'm so sad about this book, It sounded so amazing but the reviews are so disappointing. *shakes fist at the pretty covers* Great review! :)

  2. Yes, the cheese level was set to extra-super-cheesy! I was definitely disappointed that it wasn't as good as I was hoping. But it definitely seems that the general opinion is the same from other reviews and ratings that I've seen. Thanks for stopping by!

  3. Okay so here I am at 15 reading this book thinking, 'hey this sounds good!' So I started to read this book.
    My hobbies consist of reading and writing so I do that the time to enjoy books and learning how to properly build up characters, a great plot, etc.
    Reading this book, I was cringing quiet often over the cheesiness, the lack of personality of Wren Gray, the lack of depth behind Charlie Parker. Starrla being the crazy ex!
    The whole time I felt I knew Starrla more than I knew Wren. Wren's the goody two shoes who wants to pull away and grow up, so here she is everybody. She looked at a boy in a parking lot and who just so happened to look at her as her skirt went up and they instantly fell in love! I could have thought of that when I was six. When I was six that's basically how I thought I'd meet my true love. Here I am today, in high school no 'true love,' but that's besides the point.
    There was drama, I'll admit that, but instead of building on it, it was over at the very beginning of the next chapter. It was solved so easily, where's the fighting? The hurt? The crying? The drama wasn't even that dramatic. Wow, Wren, his brother is bullied and paralysed, you're crying over the fact that he needs to help his family? That's selfish. Charlie really isn't choosing his family over you. Get that into your head Wren.
    I don't know why Wren decides to ignore him and cry in your room every single time Dev needs help. Give Charlie a break already, there's more important things in the world than having sex. And Sex. And. Even. More. Sex.
    Charlie, lying over the fact that your going to see Starrla and using Dev as an excuse. What's wrong with you? I mean seriously, who does that? Charlie's back story, we're told so little, and expected to know this as well as the author wants to display, but we can't their is a lack of explanation. There was so much more potential for Charlie's back story, I'm actually disappointed.
    Starrla, oh Starrla, the typical crazy ex. I think I like the antagonist more than the protagonist in this story. I mean, I felt more connect to Starrla and Wren. We learnt a little bit more about Starrla in Charlie's back story and buy finding out her mother is in jail. Starrla's personality was more present than Wrens was. Although, I don't agree that Starrla should have tried to kill herself because Charlie didn't want her? No. She sounds like she is 13 by doing this. I mean really, and Wren being upset for Charlie going up to make sure Starrla is okay when she tried to KILL HERSELF. Wren, grow up, you're 18 not 10.
    The climax, I don't even know where it was, was it the first time they had sex or was it Starrla trying to kill herself, because there was no falling action. I feel maybe the book should have been written in Wren's perspective so we'd get a better idea of what her personality is and maybe that would help show where the climax is.
    Maybe it's just me but the use of the word, 'tummy,' was starting to kill me. Can't we use the word stomach or no? I feel like even though this book is for young adults (13-18), I feel its more for pre-teens. I pictured the characters at more the age of 12, going through their passage of rite, rather than at 18 and falling in love.
    It's disappointing on how much potential the book had but was not pursued. The cover looked great, but the cheesiness, not knowing where the climax is, and unable to see the matureness of our characters and how they had matured.
    This is just my opinion, it was easy to read, but I think more could have been done and the whole "our souls touched," was waaaaaaaaaaaay to much for cheesiness, and I'm a hopeless romantic just hoping to have my first kiss in the next year. But really, "our souls touched," can we just steer away from that?
    Sorry for having a novel of a comment for a novel! :3

  4. Thanks for commenting Lexie! It's obvious that this one brought out a lot of frustrations and passionate feelings for you. I can completely understand why. Reading all of your issues with this one and remembering it myself has me cringing even just thinking about it. All of your points are extremely valid, and I think the Goodreads rating of 3.2 is an accurate reflection of how readers as a whole felt about this one. Thanks again fro stopping by and commenting!