This post will contain ***SPOILERS***
Ok. So. I was happier with the fourth book than I was with the third, but still not as in love as I was with the first two. That is your background. As anxious as I was to read the fourth, I was even more so to read the fifth. Would Marcus still be a smug unattractive shell of his former self? That was my main worry - not that they wouldn't end up together, because, come on people - every one knows the whole point of this fifth book was to give the readers the happy ending they wanted. The one where Jessica and Marcus ride off into the sunset knowing that they would be togethah forevah. The worry was, in its essence, would the journey feel right? And I'm pleased to report that it did.
I loved that McCafferty changed her style. No diary or letter - instead a third person narrator telling us a blow by blow account of thoughts and feelings of BOTH Jessica and Marcus. Yes, both of them! And that saved Marcus. We got to hear his actual thoughts! Be privy to his insecurities! See the inner workings of his mind! All at the same time as our narrator dissected him. It was fabulous and returned Marcus to his former sexy bad-boy intellectual glory.
Since they hadn't seen each other for three years we get some memories thrown in. Marcus was devastated after his marriage proposal was rejected (as well he should have been) and didn't take it with his easy peasy life is as life is philosophy. Which made me ecstatic. I wanted him to be wounded - if only because he had annoyed the crap out of me for the previous two books. I loved that he threw himself into an unhealthy and ultimately regrettable relationship that showed him that Jessica was the one he had let get away.
I loved Jessica's connection with Sunny, her contemporary Korean version of her high school self. It added much needed snark into the story. It added heartbreak and tension and humanized Jessica.
The sexual tension that was so sadly lacking in the past two books was back in full effect. Would they or wouldn't they? We knew they, in due course, would and that we didn't want Jessica running full tilt away from the first moment they ran into each other (literally) because they were smoldering together.
In addition to the narrator there were also poems - my favorite being the interactive haiku. Pure genius. I loved the flirty, slowly more and more revealing haikus that they wrote back and forth. It seemed like McCafferty was playing with style in this final book and it worked. Much more so that the same old diary format would have.
I am so relieved and happy that this was the ending to their story. I’m sad it’s over, but happy to send them on their way.
Read my review of Forth Comings.