Title: Keep What Remains
Author: Carrie Beamer
Publisher: Evernight Teen
Pub Date: 05/23/20
Genre: Young Adult Romance
It’s 1985, MTV and big hair are in full force and sixteen-year-old Megan is navigating her mediocre life inside the bubble her overprotective dad created for her. Just when she thinks her social life’s dead, her best friend Tessa—a coquettish risk-taker—moves to a new school, and Megan embarks on a journey with Tessa that changes everything for them.
When Megan meets a boy named Jason, who’s a charming misfit, she’s pulled into his world capturing her heart and luring her away from her old, safe life. Diving headfirst into an all-encompassing new love, she soon gets caught up in the lies she’s told while experiencing emotions only first love brings.
Tragedy strikes bringing Megan heartbreak and yet, a new beginning. Megan’s left to make the hardest decision she’s ever faced. Will she choose to go back to life before she met Jason or choose love over everything else.
Keep What Remains is a fun book with an engaging plot and endearing characters. I really enjoyed Megan as the main character because she so badly wants to have the freedom to date and act like a teenager but is stuck constantly babysitting her younger brother and following her father’s strict rules. You can see the bad decisions she’s making once she starts sneaking around behind his back and yet you don’t judge her for them because you want her to keep relishing her life and having fun. She felt like a younger sister to me in that I wanted her to spread her wings but I also wanted her to act smarter and to be safe. I think that’s why I understood the motivations and actions of Megan’s older sister Chelsea. I am the younger sister in my family though, so I definitely related to Megan more than Chelsea.
The author really knows how to get you right in the feels. The pain and emotions I felt during this book were very high. It was hard for me to get into in the first chapter, and I wasn’t sure if I would like the book, but after that it was smooth sailing, and I found myself constantly wanting to know what was going to happen next. I wish there could have been more of Lindsey at the end or at least talk of that relationship because I feel like it was dropped, and I really liked Lindsey. But I did like the direction the book took and the ending was really satisfying for me.
Overall, I really enjoyed Keep What Remains and the importance of friendship and sisterhood to the characters. Life gets turned upside down for Megan, but she can always rely on the girls in her life to support her whether they agree with her or not. This is perfect for fans of family dramas, first loves, and Sarah Dessen. It also has a similar theme to one of Sarah’s novels (if I said the name it would spoil what happens). This is a great book to read if you’re looking for something with a hopeful note to it.
I spent over 30 minutes on these because I took my job as casting director very serious 😂
Carrie Beamer grew up in Kansas City, Missouri where the sports and barbecue make the humidity in the summer and the frigid temps in the winter worth it. She fell in love with reading as a young girl when she picked up her first Beverly Cleary book and was pulled into the world of Ramona Quimby.
Her passion for writing young adult comes from a love of the mischief we all explored as teens. She believes no matter where you grew up or what era, you walked a fine line of keeping it all together or completely falling apart while navigating the ups and downs of school. Teen angst is a rite of passage that we all recover from at some point, and she loves to write about it.
She’s a high school registrar who fills her nights with writing and reading into the wee hours. Her weekends are spent hanging out with her two sons and trying to tame a couple of obnoxious rescued dogs, and life couldn’t be better. Follow her on Instagram.
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Thank you so much for reading my review of Keep What Remains!
*I was sent a copy by the author to review, but all opinions are my own*