Book Review: Saving June by Hannah Harrington

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Saving June by Hannah Harrington
Publication date:  May, 2011 (Australia) November, 2011 (International)
Published by: Harlequin Teen
Source:  Bought

When model student June Scott kills herself on the brink of high school graduation, no one is more shocked than her sixteen-year-old sister Harper. Things go from bad to worse after her nosy evangelical aunt moves in to take care of her mom, and when her estranged parents decide to split June’s ashes between them, it’s the last straw. Harper knows she has to take serious action— action that takes form in plotting with her best friend to spread the ashes in the one place June always wanted to live: the California coast.
Enter Jake Tolan, a boy with a classic rock obsession, a bad attitude, and nothing in common with straight-laced June. But after he crashes June’s wake, Harper is sure he knows more about her sister than he’s letting on. Her suspicions only deepen when he discovers the plan to steal the urn and decides he wants in, for reasons he’s none too forthcoming to explain.
Of course, once they’re on the road, things don’t go as smoothly as she’d hoped. First there’s a brush with the law during an anti-war protest gone bad. And if it’s not trying to avoid arrest, it’s dealing with angry threats from parents, public brawls in underground punk clubs, and more accidental detours than Harper can count.
Complicating things even more is her growing attraction to Jake; she’s drawn to his alternately charming and infuriating demeanor, and his unwavering faith in the idea that music can see you through anything. It might be exactly what she needs.
What Harper doesn’t know is that he has a secret with the power to turn her life upside-down— again.

My Review:

Favourite Quote:  "He took his pain and turned it into something beautiful. Into something that people connect to. And that's what good music does. It speaks to you. It changes you."

WOW! I am seriously blown away by how fantastic this book is. I loved Saving June.  I am going to try and write a proper review here when all I want to do is go all fan girl about it!

Harper's older sister June takes her life.  Harper is devastated and doesn't know why.  Her divorced parents decide to split the ashes but Harper isn't about to let that happen.  She steals the ashes and runs off on a road trip to California to scatter the ashes across the ocean with her best friend Laney and Jake a stranger that is somehow connected to June.

First up this book is my type of contemp.  It is real and honest.  It takes you on a journey with these incredible characters.   I am so impressed with Harrington's writing.  You would never think this is her debut novel.  It is clever, gorgeous and full of heart.

Harper, Jake and Laney are believable characters that come alive inside the pages. I adored the realistic dialogue between them. It was witty, full of emotion and often humorous.  I also like that fact the characters are flawed but still make smart decisions and are the type of people I would love to be friends with.

Harper is strong and confident in what she believes yet can be afraid to step outside her own comfort zones at times and often doubts how amazing she really is.  Laney is her best friend and is a wonderful support person for Harper no matter what.  Now Jake he caused major swooning.  He is a bit rough around the edges, is majorly obsessed with music (plays the guitar and sings a little) and throughout the story his secret slowly unravels.

There is also some delicious romance.  I had to go back and re-read those pages over (and over and over and over) again!

Another element I loved about this book is there is loads of music talk.  Also playlists at the the end of the book that were mentioned in the story.  If you are huge fan of books with music you are going to love this and will want to download all the songs mentioned.

Overall, a stunning debut.  My favourite road trip book ever.  I insist all you fans of realistic fiction give Saving June a read!

Overall Rating: 5/5     ***Another favourite read of 2011***
Writing: 5/5
Plot: 5/5
Characters: 5/5
Romance: 5/5
Cover: 5/5

## Make sure to stop back on Monday for an interview with Hannah Harrington.

For More Info:  Visit Hannah Harrington's website.  

For More reviews:  Inkcrush and Tales of Compendium

When I read I tag my favourite parts of the book.  Just to show you how much I loved the wonderful writing in Saving June I have a picture of my copy below.  As you can see I pretty much loved every page.


Anonymous said...

I got an ARC of this from the ARRC back in March and totally forgot to review it!

Great review, Nic. This is a good book, and while I may not say it's a favourite, I definitely got very emotional in the end. I know I'll love reading it once again in the future. :)

Miss Page-Turner said...

I simply love your review and you know I am definitely ordering this one,too! You've got the best comtemp recs! I can't wait to read this novel when you say that the characters are characters one wants to be friends with. I also can't wait to meet Jake.

Do you know an online shop where I can order the Australian edition(I'm from Germany)? I don't want any other cover edition, it looks so gorgeous!
Thank you so so much for your review, your secret admirer

Anonymous said...

I loved your review. Saving June sounds wonderful and the cover is absolutely beautiful!

Belle said...

Fantastic review, I hadn't heard of this book before you mentioned it and now I totally want to read it! It sounds awesome. Thanks! :)

Misha said...

Both Nomes' and your reviews make me want to read the book so badly! Romance, road trip and music is an amazing combination.

Jacinda (The Reading Housewives) said...

Awesome review! I have plans to read this next month! :) Look at all those sticky notes! :)

Aleeza said...

you guys SERIOUSLY need to stop teasing me about this book, since i probably won't get my hands on it until a long time, you hear?!

Victoria said...

This book seems fantastic, I'll have to remember to add it to my TBR list!

Savannah said...

Ahh, I love these types of books! I must get it. Thanks for the review!

Cass said...

Love the review! Glad you loved it. Too bad I'm already on book buying ban.

Jess - The Tales Compendium said...

Yay for the Saving June love!
Great review as usual and thanks for linking :)

Jenny said...

Delicious romance you say? Sign me up:) I always find it really hard to write a review for a book I'm absolutely in love with, I can't get my thoughts to come out in a coherent way to illustrate how much I adored it! Awesome review Nic!

Holly said...

This sounds like it had everything. Love me a good romance and road trio book. I like the quote you posted too. I'm so glad I have am ecopy of it. Must dive in soon. :) Thanks for the review!

Tiffany said...

Great review! This one definitely sounds like my kind of book :)

Audrey (holes In My brain) said...

Ahh, this totally sounds like my type of contemp too, you're totally right, Nomes gives the best recs. I'll definitely be buying this when it becomes available :)

Anonymous said...

*grins* I dog-ear when I love a section of the book.

And that much tagging looks promising.

I already have this one on my to buy list but I think I'm going to bump it up a bit :D

Jan von Harz said...

LOL I also use postits to tag parts I love or want to revisit, but that is a whole lot of postits (and very high praise). I also read Nomes review and am now officially lusting over this book. Sadly I will have to wait until November, but it is on my preorder list!

Melissa (Books and Things) said...

OMG! You had me at that quote! Loved that quote! Plus Harper sounds like someone I'd want to meet. Then you add swooning over Jake? Yes, I do need to get this book!

Alix said...

Oh wow I think just a photo of what you did to the book would have had me pre-ordering it :D It sounds exactly my kind of thing ~ strong girls, swoony boys and music! ~ so I'll be looking out for it come November.

Great review Nic, thanks.

bibliophile brouhaha said...

This book sounds PERFECT!! I have heard nothing but good things about it! And I do love a very real feeling contemp! And is that the BEST pic of a book I've ever seen - you know you love one when it's covered it notes :)


Let's Evaluate said...

new follower! [:

Great review! I'll definitely have to keep an eye out for this one, it sounds amazing.

new blogger, stop by if you get a chance, thanks!

Rummanah Aasi said...

This sounds exactly what I've been looking for lately, especially with contemporary YA. I also love books that feature music too. I got this one on my tbr pile, all thanks to your review. :)

YA Book Queen said...

Wow, you've got me very excited for this one now! Wonderful review :)

Missie, The Unread Reader said...

Oh Wow Nic! You are blowing me away here. I've wanted to read this book since Nomes's review, but now after reading your thoughts, I even more desperate to read it!

I love books you just want to fangirl about and romance scenes you want to read over and over again! And I love that picture of your copy all marked up.

What a special review, Nic. Looking forward to the interview! Thanks!

jayme said...

Oh, this book looks really good! Thanks for bringing it to my attention--definitely adding it to my list. Great review!

Jenny N. said...

I'm adding this to my readign list. I've been on a contemp kick lately and I think I would love this book too.

Nomes said...


your review is awesome

and i am so glad we are in the peanut butter club together ;)

Leanna Elle said...

I am *dying* to read this one! I've been looking for it on TBD but no joy yet! :(

A Canadian Girl said...

Wow, those are a lot of stickys! I love the sound of this and haven't read a road trip book other than Amy and Roger's Epic Detour which I really liked so I'll be adding this one to my wishlist. Thanks!

Ange said...

This looks like an awesome read. Thanks for putting up such a great review! Definitely running out and buying this one soon!


Lucy (The Secret Life of Books) said...

haha I love the picture of the tagged book!

Lesley said...

Your review is amazing, I am desperate to read this now. It's not available in the UK until November (and that's only a maybe) arrgghh!!!

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