Title: A World Without You
Author: Beth Revis
Date Started: September 16
Date Finished: September 20
Format: Hardcover from local library
What if finding her means losing himself?
Seventeen-year-old Bo has always had delusions that he can travel through time. When he was ten, Bo claimed to have witnessed the Titanic hit an iceberg, and at fifteen, he found himself on a Civil War battlefield, horrified by the bodies surrounding him. So when his worried parents send him to a school for troubled youth, Bo assumes he knows the truth: that he’s actually attending Berkshire Academy, a school for kids who, like Bo, have “superpowers.”
At Berkshire, Bo falls in love with Sofía, a quiet girl with a tragic past and the superpower of invisibility. Soíia helps Bo open up in a way he never has before. In turn, Bo provides comfort to Sofía, who lost her mother and two sisters at a very young age.
But even the strength of their love isn’t enough to help Sofia escape her deep depression. After she commits suicide, Bo is convinced that she’s not actually dead. He believes that she’s stuck somewhere in time—that he somehow left her in the past, and that now it’s his job to save her. And as Bo becomes more and more determined to save Sofía, he must decide whether to face his demons head-on or succumb to a psychosis that will let him be with the girl he loves.
Most of the time I don’t like books that leave me feeling confused. I don’t mind it as I’m going along the story, but then everything comes together – or starts to, if it’s a series – at the end. I didn’t get that with A World Without You. In fact, I’m even more confused now then I was when I started reading this book. Bo has a mental illness where he believes he can go back in time. But in reality, he can’t, so his parents send him to a school/facility called Berkshire that will hopefully help him with his condition. But Bo believes that he isn’t the only one who has special powers; there’s Harold who can talk to ghosts, Gwen who can control fire, Ryan who has teleknesis and Sofía who can turn invisible. It’s his love for Sofía that causes him trouble. When the book begins he’s attending her memorial service, because Sofía killed herself, although that isn’t how Bo sees it. He thinks he took Sofía back in time and left her there. And now he’s trying to find his way back to her, but nothing is working. Add in the fact that people from the state show up to investigate the school and things get messy.
Final Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. Revis is good at what she does. If I had gone into this book without reading the summary, I would have honestly thought I was reading a paranormal/sci-fi book about a kid who is put into a facility for a mental illness but really he has a super power. But because I did read the summary, I was a little taken aback by that angle of the story. When the book goes deeper and shows that it was all in Bo’s head, things started to become clearer. I also liked the addition of chapters from Bo’s sister’s POV. It showed that Bo’s reality wasn’t real and you got to see how Bo’s family was coping with everything.
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