‘As She Fades’ by Abbie Glines.
Publisher: Pan Macmillan Australia.
Published Date: April 10th, 2018.
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary.
Page Count: 266 pages.
On the night of her high school graduation, Vale McKinley and her boyfriend Crawford are in a terrible car accident that leaves Crawford in a coma. They were supposed to spend the summer planning for college, for a bright future full of possibility. Together. Instead, Vale spends long days in the hospital, hoping Crawford will awaken.
Slate Allen, a college friend of Vale’s brother, has been visiting his dying uncle at the same hospital. When he and Vale meet, she can’t deny the flutter of an illicit attraction. She tries to ignore her feelings, but she’s not immune to Slate’s charm. Slowly, they form a cautious friendship.
Then, Crawford wakes up . . . with no memory of Vale or their relationship. Heartbroken, Vale opts to leave for college and move on with her life. Except now, she’s in Slate’s territory, and their story is about to take a very strange turn.
“I knew just by listening to him that Vale McKinley was special. The kind of special that changed a person. That made a mark in life”.
‘As She Fades’ is a new Young Adult Contemporary which explored the relative themes of love, forgiveness, friendship, family and overcoming. The novel perfectly and clearly captures the process of forgiving oneself and realising that it’s perfectly fine for one to change when experiencing new adventures in life.
With the scene set in America, the leading female character Vale, struggles with the idea of attending college. She has a fear of leaving her boyfriend Crawford behind, as he is in a coma. Vale fears that the very idea of experiencing the things life throws at her in his absence will change her. That when he eventually awakes, he won’t be able to recognise the girl he once fell in love with.
Overcoming this fear, Vale strives with the very goal to live life, including making new friendships. In particular, with a mysterious fellow college student called Slate with a reputation never the less.
Abbie Glines honestly just portrayed this unique, traumatic story perfectly. Her way with words truly captured what it means to move forward in life, living in the present and not in the past. To re-evaluate life and realise that one’s self-worth is crucial to finding happiness.
‘As She Fades’ was separated into two twisting parts which honestly caught us by surprise. It was something we weren’t expecting yet we were a little confused at the same time. However, the meaning within this novel delivered a hell of a punch. This wasn’t some predictable stereotypical structure which can usually occur throughout contemporary plots, it was genuinely unique when considering two different viewpoints within the novel.
The leading character Vale is quite, shy and self-aware however, the character faces a personal journey along with this plot discovering her own self-worth. Slate on the other hand, was described in an engaging way that just really helped us interact with the plot a bit more.
We were both however, a little conflicted with this novel due to the different pacing between both parts 1 and 2. The second part of the novel felt quite rushed and unrealistic in away due to quite a big jump in the climax. We just felt like it needed a bit more time instead of being thrown straight into the deep end of the novel.
We found this novel to be a quick and engaging read. If you’re fans of young adult contemporary reads or first love stories than this novel is right up your alley!
Book Rating: 3.5/5 ⭐
~ Georgia & Morgan.