My Review:First loves. Last Wishes. Letting go.
Seventeen-year-old Maddie O'Neill Levine lives a charmed life, and is primed to spend the perfect pre-college summer with her best friends and young-at-heart socialite grandmother (also Maddie's closest confidante), tying up high school loose ends. Maddie's plans change the instant Gram announces that she is terminally ill and has booked the family on a secret "death with dignity" cruise ship so that she can leave the world in her own unconventional way - and give the O'Neill clan an unforgettable summer of dreams-come-true in the process.
Soon, Maddie is on the trip of a lifetime with her over-the-top family. As they travel the globe, Maddie bonds with other passengers and falls for Enzo, who is processing his own grief. But despite the laughter, headiness of first love, and excitement of glamorous destinations, Maddie knows she is on the brink of losing Gram. She struggles to find the strength to say good-bye in a whirlwind summer shaped by love, loss, and the power of forgiveness.
I didn't hate this and, actually, some parts of it were enjoyable but there were some glaring issues that I couldn't overcome. I still love the premise of this and probably would have really liked this book had Maddie been anything but a selfish, intolerant, disgusting brat. Her Gram was so freaking amazing and she had a loving family but the entire focus, which should have been on her Gram, was instead on her own wants and her obsession with Enzo, who is conveniently also on the cruise. I don't know, it just seemed totally unnecessary to have a love interest in this book -- if your most loved person in the world was dying, would your whole focus be on your virginity? I know we all deal with grief in different ways but I just found Maddie to be so selfish that it ruined the book for me. The traveling was definitely awesome and loved reading about places I've been and have yet to travel to but the traveling also just felt so freaking unrealistic even considering how wealthy Maddie's family was and how sick her Gram was. I also couldn't get over Maddie's repulsive and intolerant descriptions of other cultures -- she was so obnoxious and racist. I did have a few tears in my eyes at the end of this because it was sad but I still can't stand Maddie.
We talk for hours. I tell him about my friends and Connecticut and the lake club summer I was supposed to have. I talk about Gram and all the amazing things we've done over the years. I show him constellations, because there are millions of them painting the sky above us. I tell him how I wish I could be close with my brother like we were before he got weird and angry.