Review From User :
Wow. 5.5 stars!! (New review - edited after re-read)
LOVE LOVE LOVED this absolutely beautiful , unique and unforgettable story about survival and love.
Its well-written, riveting and heartfelt. The HEA ending is just perfect with an epilogue that brought the happiest tears to my eyes. I honestly don't have one single complaint to make about the this book.
One of my top favorite reads ever!
I just finished reading it for the second time. I read it once a year ago and absolutely adored it but it was in my pre-review writing days and so, now that I've re-read it, I just wanted to tell you all how much I absolutely adored this story.
Its one of those stories that reminds you that true love can be found in the least likely of places and that, no matter what other people think, you should always follow your heart.
When an unfortunate plane crash strands them together on a small uninhabited island in the Maldives, 16-year-old TJ, a high school student in remission from cancer, and his 30-year-old summer tutor Anna are forced to depend on each other for survival as they wait to be rescued.
And wait and wait and wait.
Weeks turn to months and eventually to years with no sign of rescue on the horizon.
But as their time on the island passes, Anna is faced with the reality that the boy she came to the island with is now becoming a man.
First of all you need to know that TJ isn't like most other teens. He feels about twice as old as he is. Seriously, when you 'meet' him, you'll understand. The events of his life have matured him far beyond his years and he so incredibly sure of his feelings that it is guaranteed to melt your heart.
For those of you who are wondering if the age difference makes their relationship feel at all weird, I promise, it absolutely does not . Cross my heart. They don't get physically involved until he is almost 19-years-old so there is never an 'underage' issue. Watching them slowly fall for each other as he got much older was beautifully written, plausibly paced and never rushed. And if you read the book, you'll see without question that they really, truly belong together.
"I love you, Anna."
The surprised look on her face told me she hadn't seen that coming.
"You weren't supposed to fall in love," she whispered.
"Well, I did," I said, looking into her eyes. "I've been in love with you for months. I'm telling you now because I think you love me too, Anna. You just don't think you're supposed to. You'll tell me when you're ready. I can wait."
The author is a brilliantly gifted story-teller who perfectly captures and portrays intensity of the situation that Anna and TJ went though - depending on each other, supporting each other, saving each other.
The book is told in alternating chapter POV's between Anna and TJ. It is done very seamlessly allowing the reader a chance to really get into the minds of both the main character - something vital given the nature of the storyline.
Its one of those incredibly written books that you never want to put down - where you are immersed in the story and connected to the characters right from the beginning.
Another thing that you should know is that TJ's cancer does not come back. This not a story about that. I've heard some people say that that held them back from wanting to read this book so I'd like to dispel that worry here. This is a beautiful love story with a very happy ending!!
"I kissed her as soon as we were inside her apartment, and I wasn't gentle about it, holding her face firmly in my hands and pressing my lips hard against hers. She wasn't anyone's to own - I knew that - but right then she was mine."
If you haven't yet read it, trust me, its worth bumping to the very top of your lists!!
I know I'll be rereading it many times for years to come <3
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When thirty-year-old English teacher Anna Emerson is offered a job tutoring T.J. Callahan at his family’s summer rental in the Maldives, she accepts without hesitation; a working vacation on a tropical island trumps the library any day.
T.J. Callahan has no desire to leave town, not that anyone asked him. He’s almost seventeen and if having cancer wasn’t bad enough, now he has to spend his first summer in remission with his family – and a stack of overdue assignments – instead of his friends.
Anna and T.J. are en route to join T.J.’s family in the Maldives when the pilot of their seaplane suffers a fatal heart attack and crash-lands in the Indian Ocean. Adrift in shark-infested waters, their life jackets keep them afloat until they make it to the shore of an uninhabited island. Now Anna and T.J. just want to survive and they must work together to obtain water, food, fire, and shelter.
Their basic needs might be met but as the days turn to weeks, and then months, the castaways encounter plenty of other obstacles, including violent tropical storms, the many dangers lurking in the sea, and the possibility that T.J.’s cancer could return. As T.J. celebrates yet another birthday on the island, Anna begins to wonder if the biggest challenge of all might be living with a boy who is gradually becoming a man.