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Bibliophilic Monologues

Saving June

Saving June - Hannah Harrington Hello, all people in the movie making industry, I hope you are sitting up and taking notice because Saving June would make an AWESOME movie. Less budget needed too since there is no need for sparkly special effects or makeup and costumes for werewolves and other fantastic creatures.Saving June, for some reason, reminded me a lot of Fall for Anything by Courtney Summers. While both deal with grief, Saving June takes a much more light hearted approach than the latter. Grief, looking at it from an objective view, is an interesting thing.I have lost a lot of important people in my life. I know the first few minutes of agonized disbelief when it’s a sudden death or the calm acceptance sprinkled with a bit of relief that your beloved one’s suffering is over. The worst kind of death is when you are left behind by a friend or a relative deliberately. That is, when the friend/relative chooses suicide over life. I had this classmate in Grade 12, in Fiji, a girl by the name of Razia, a beautiful person who sat in front of me for two weeks before I came to school one morning to the news that she had burnt herself over the weekend. We visited her at the hospital and just minutes after I saw, she died. And I remember sitting under a tree, cold in the hot sun, wondering why I hadn’t seen it coming, why hadn’t I spoken to her more? If there had been anything I could have done? If it was somehow my fault. And this was for a classmate. I’d like to say we were friends but honestly, we were just two random strangers who happened to go to school together. And I felt that bereaved.So imagine, if it was your sister who took her own life. Imagine the amount of pain, the amount of bewilderment, the amount of self-anger that would involve? And that’s what Harper is going through. Her mother has quietly shattered, her father is away creating a new family and her aunt is trying to take over her life.Harper’s journey to California with a guy she doesn’t really know anything about and her best friend is a revelation of sorts. She is not just taking her sister to the one place she wanted to go but also finding a way to cope with the grief, cope with being left behind. Those days she spends in the van with someone she’s falling in love with and a best friend she realizes she hasn’t known as well as she thought are perhaps very necessary steps she needs to take. She is not just fulfilling her sister’s dream but also hers. By breaking out of her shell, by taking on new risks and acting on her emotions, she is paying a homage to her sister. If that makes sense.It is a beautiful book, you guys. And it comes with its own soundtrack! It deals with grieving, with bereavement in a beautiful way and it also, very clearly, shows that there is a lot to love about living. I recommend it.