When I read that Ms. Bracken began writing this novel at the age of 19, can I just say..I was seriously impressed.
Okay, so yes the cover was what attracted me - like how all relationships start out. It was pretty so I was interested (hehe). However, the inside (whether it be a person or a book!) can turn you away just as quick as the outside drew you in. This was not the case here.
For me, this book was about the relationship between Sydelle and North. Yes, there were many things going on around them (bad guy coming to get them, bad weather, etc) but when it came down to what I was interested in most, it was the two of them.
If I'm being honest, North irritated me for about half of the book with his drunkenness and inability to act like an adult (yes yes I know he's only 18 but come on!). Then he really made me mad three-quarters of the way through the book. (Seriously, how did Sydelle put up with him?) Were his intentions good or was he just being selfish and unfair to Sydelle? I'm not so sure I know the answer. I'm all for 'protecting' the people you care about but was that really what he was trying to do? I feel like Sydelle was giving him the benefit of the doubt because don't we all believe that the people who we love have good intentions for us?
Seriously, come on North..quit holding out on Sydelle. Honesty is the best policy, you know..
Now, now..I'm not saying that I didn't like North - I really did like him..eventually. I'm just saying that he made me mad for much of the book. You can like someone and still get irritated with them (Isn't that basically what Owain had said to North about Sydelle?).
And there is a MAP in the beginning of the book. She had me at hello. For me, it's all about the visualization of the setting. Can I see it in my mind? Where are they traveling? How are they getting there? Just how far do they have to go? It was nice to see the world come to life! Especially since Sydelle frequently referred to their map during their journey and though it was North's map, he never looked at it..and got lost much of the time. What is it with men and directions? :)