A warning to potential readers: this deals with death by suicide, method, being the person to find them, grief, and depression.
“But I am less afraid of what might become of me while sailing alone in the Caribbean than of what might become of me if I stay.”
I devoured this book. It was heavy in sections, but well balanced with humor and romance. Anna seems to have lost herself when she lost Ben. She doesn’t seem to be living but is existing day to day. She decides to go on the boat trip Ben had planned because what else is she going to do? Anna embarks on her journey ill prepared for what it entails, so she has no choice but to hire someone to assist her, enter Keane.
He’s naturally charming and hilarious. He has also experienced hardships in life so they make a good pair and become fast friends. Keane knew when to step in and when to back away and let her process and work through her grief. Their blossoming friendship was really beautiful and I liked how the romance never felt rushed but naturally and slowly evolves.
Each new destination gives Anna a deeper insight into herself as well as her relationship with Ben. This could have been cliché, but I felt like each new island brought on fresh characters, my favorite might be Eulalia on Cat Island, and more layers to Anna. Sometimes she would slip away when I wanted her to push forward, but it made her grief feel more realistic.
Doller’s writing is descriptive but never over the top. It felt like I could feel the sun and see the water. The depth of emotion was there and while I never got choked up it resonated with me. What a brilliant adult debut and I can’t wait for more.