Format: Hardcover, 449 pages.
Goodreads Summary: The Pre-Sloane Emily didn’t go to parties, she barely talked to guys, she didn’t do anything crazy. Enter Sloane, social tornado and the best kind of best friend—the one who yanks you out of your shell.But right before what should have been an epic summer, Sloane just… disappears. No note. No calls. No texts. No Sloane. There’s just a random to-do list. On it, thirteen Sloane-selected-definitely-bizarre-tasks that Emily would never try… unless they could lead back to her best friend. Apple Picking at Night? Ok, easy enough.Dance until Dawn? Sure. Why not? Kiss a Stranger? Wait… what?
Getting through Sloane’s list would mean a lot of firsts. But Emily has this whole unexpected summer ahead of her, and the help of Frank Porter (totally unexpected) to check things off. Who knows what she’ll find?
Thoughts: I’ve heard so many wonderful things about Morgan Matson, but I never got around to reading one of her books until now. Reading Since You’ve Been Gone was a breath of fresh air and really made me excited for summer vacation. This story is about breaking out of your shell and the importance of friendship. If you’re a fan of contemporary then this is the book for you. There’s even a hint of romance in there for those of you that can’t live without it.
What really kept me reading though were the characters. Everybody that made an appearance felt like they needed to be there and added to the story in one way or another. It also helped that I had a lot in common with the main character Emily. Her friendship with Sloane was the driving force of the entire novel, and it was essential for character growth on an emotional level. In a way this book felt like a mystery too because as the reader we’re trying to figure out where Sloane went. I loved how we didn’t understand more than what Emily knew. Just like her I became anxious to know what happened and why. Completely unexpected.
I don’t know what it was about the concept of this story but I really found it entertaining. I’d love to be given a random to-do list over the summer and complete the entire thing. Morgan Matson is also really good at putting playlists of songs into her books. I screamed when I saw one particular song listed. (House of Gold- Twenty One Pilots) The music aspect added another layer to the story, one that many people would love. Since You’ve Been Gone is the perfect summer read and I’d recommend it for anyone who loves contemporary, like myself. Worth the read. I’m really excited to pick up her other books!