The Compulsive Reader: Winter Longing by Tricia Mills

Monday, July 26, 2010

Winter Longing by Tricia Mills

Winter Craig has loved her best friend Spencer for as long as she can remember, and she finally gets up the courage to tell him how she feels and ask him out the week before their senior year starts...and discovers he feels the same way. Winter is overjoyed, but then over Labor Day weekend Spencer's plane goes down while he is taking his pilot's license test, and he is killed. Devastated, Winter is left to try and cope with losing not only a boyfriend, but a best friend. And as the weeks stretch by, strangely enough it is her next-door-neighbor Jesse that slowly helps her heal and live (and love) once more.

As with Mills' previous novel, Heartbreak River, Winter Longing is a sensitive novel about love and loss with a beautiful, tangible setting that fits the story and the characters perfectly. The pacing of the novel is quite perfect; it begins with the day of the plane crash and continues into the following school year as Winter attempts to go through the paces of everyday life, with each chapter separated by a short excerpt of a memory with Spencer over the years. Winter needs time to heal and deal with her loss, and though it is obvious that Jesse has feelings for her and she is beginning to feel the same way about him, they don't jump into a relationship--both need to find common ground before they can move into being something more.

Another excellent aspect of the book is the way that Mills illustrates that people grieve differently in the conflicts that are raised between Winter and her best friend Lindsay right after Spencer's death. She also realistically depicts how relationships can change in the light of loss and death, but they can survive, and in the case of death, the relationship doesn't have to end--Winter will always have Spencer and her memories with her. Winter Longing is kept from being completely held down in grief by Lindsay's own troubles with her home life, and Winter's decisions regarding her future. The book is far from overbearing in its pain, and though it is a sad read, there is also a lot of hope in between the pages, and laughter and love and healing. Mills writes so convincingly about love and death, and Winter Longing is a heartfelt book you don't want to miss.

Cover Comments: I love the cover--it's romantic and tense, and the moon is gorgeous. I love the font as well because it is different than a lot of fonts used on romance covers, and it reminds me of something you would see on an old love story.

Winter Longing will be released from Razorbill on August 12th, 2010!

ARC received from publisher.


Nomes said...

This is so a book for me! I can;t wait for it to come out :)

great review, it's gotten me even more excited :)

Anonymous said...

doesn't this book sound like 20 boy summer?

The Compulsive Reader said...

It really isn't anything like 20 Boy Summer. The only common denominator is that the boyfriend died...Winter Longing is completely different!