Here We Are Now // I Enjoyed It But Thing Were Left Unresolved For Me

14 November 2017

Here We Are Now
Here We Are Now – Jasmine Warga
Published: 7th November 2017

Source: Publisher

Genre: Contemporary, Young Adult

My Rating:
Despite sending him letters ever since she was thirteen, Taliah Abdallat never thought she'd ever really meet Julian Oliver. But one day, while her mother is out of the country, the famed rock star from Staring Into the Abyss shows up on her doorstep. This makes sense - kinda - because Julian Oliver is Taliah's father, even though her mother would never admit it to her.

Julian asks if Taliah if she will drop everything and go with him to his hometown of Oak Falls, Indiana, to meet his father - her grandfather - who is nearing the end of his life. Taliah, torn between betraying her mother's trust and meeting the family she has never known, goes.

With her best friend Harlow by her side, Taliah embarks on a three-day journey to find out everything about her 'father' and her family. But Julian isn't the father Taliah always hoped for, and revelations about her mother's past are seriously shaking her foundation. Through all these new experiences, Taliah will have to find new ways to be true to herself, honoring her past and her future.
I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book, or the content of my review.

This was such a brilliant read. I didn't get totally absorbed, like I'd hoped, but considering it's relatively short length I enjoyed it plenty.

Taliah, Tal to her friends, has never met her father in person, but she's seen plenty of him on TV and magazines. He is a rockstar and after 16 years he turns up on her doorstep. It's a farfetched story idea. It would basically never happen in real life, but for this books purposes it was a good idea and it was interesting to read about. I found some of the plot points hard to believe (mainly that a sixteen-year-old would be left home alone while a parents goes to Paris for work for a few days and also that she would immediately go on a road trip with a dad who she had never met). My minor grumbles about farfetched plot points aside, though, it was an easy book to read all about learning to let people in. Finding family. And learning that people are not just who they seem to you. They are multi-faceted and you cannot know all of them all at once.

I really liked the characters. Taliah was so cool with how she adored music and worried it was part of her trying to emulate a father she doesn't know, yet she was also shy and reserved. She was slow to trust but loyal as hell to those she loves. And Harlow, her best friend, was interesting and cool and I wanted to get her so much more than we did. All I know is that she was a bit of a hipster, into music, and that her girlfriend, Quinn, was in a band. I definitely felt like she could have been explored as a character way more. She was Tal's opposite in many ways and I would have liked more of them together and actually being friends because most of Harlow and Tal together in this book was about them airing their issues and Tal being upset that she felt like she was losing Harlow to Quinn. I liked them having issues as friends because that is friendship but I would have liked their bond to be felt some more.

Julian, Tal's dad, was great because you kind of expect him to be the stereotypical ageing rocker and he actually ended up being more than that. He had his issues and he was a bit of a big kid. He didn't feel parental in the book, but much of that will be because he hadn't been in that role before. I liked how he slowly got to know Tal and Tal let him in and got to know who he was and is. I adored the father/daughter bonding, especially as they were relative strangers. Them bonding and growing to accept one another as family was pretty cool to read.

I think my issue with this book really comes down to its length. The book isn't that long (what YA is?) but I wish it had been longer. There were so many story threads which weren't truly resolved. Whilst this was done for effect, you can tell the way the book is ended is intentional, it was frustrating because I have unanswered questions. They aren't things I need to know, but I would have liked to have known. I would have happily have read so much more. Especially as I enjoyed seeing the past history of Tal's parents and how they met. I would have liked to see their story continuing to the present day too. And getting more resolution to Tal and Harlow's friend issues as they learn to grow together as friends.

It was a fun and easy read and I really enjoyed it. I would recommend it and I will have to read more by Warga.

Have you read this? Do you agree that there were unresolved elements to this book?
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