Author: Brittany Goodwin
Published: June 20th by Edge of 22 Publishing
Lillian was having the perfect high school life with her best friends and her boyfriend, Brad. Everything was going on so well until the day after Brad’s graduation. Brad disappeared from Lions Port and remained missing, causing Lillian to do all she can to search for him. Frantic and close to depression, she begins to learn more about Brad than she ever did during the six months they were together.
If You’re Gone is a wonderful story about high school romance, heartbreak and the fear of the unknown. When Brad went missing, Lillian was on the brink of despair. Her desire to sing vanished and she felt that her future just wasn’t important without Brad. Most importantly, she finds herself questioning God and her faith. I have no idea how it would feel when someone I love disappears with no apparent reason, but after reading about Lillian, I think I can understand how it feels.
Lillian never did give up searching for Brad and even defended him against her parents. Although I disagree with her giving up her entire future, I understand why she would be that drastic. Her world would be bleak without Brad by her side. Lillian was a different person back when Brad was around. Brad’s disappearance was worst than a breakup. At least a breakup came with reasons.
If You’re Gone is about coping with pain and the consequences of not being completely honest. Lillian had to face both which practically ate her up from the inside. If she was honest, the entire ordeal would have been over in a few days instead of months and although she wouldn’t have the answers she needed, she might have known how Brad was doing. Throughout the months she spent waiting, her fears turned into anger as she questioned God repeatedly and begged Him to bring Brad back. I believe that God actually answered her prayers in the end, just not in the way she envisioned it.
I loved reading the story. It was heartbreaking at times, but sweet too, especially during the times Lillian thought back to the beginning of her relationship with Brad. However, I found the climax a little subtle and everything was resolved all too quickly. The ending was abrupt with no clue about what Lillian would do in the future but worry not, the author, Brittany, has written an extra part which is on her website. That extra part holds all the answers I need and I came away pretty satisfied.
A very huge thank you to Brittany Goodwin for sending me a lovely copy of If You’re Gone!