Many years ago, Stacey Kade was an author I found refuge in. I was dealing with a lot in life – many hospital visits during my Dad’s cancer treatments, high school (which alone is terrifying), my animals nearing old age, bullies, work, school, and all of the troubles of being a teenager trying to find out what they want to do in their life. It was a tough time full of big decisions and insanely, horrible heartbreak, but Stacey Kade and The Ghost and the Goth series was there for me. I loved that series and I read it a few times since it brought a smile to my face and made me feel at home. Ever since, I’ve been keeping an eye out for more Stacey Kade books. I wanted to support the author that supported me through my tough years. And, lucky for me, I stumbled upon For This Life Only.
Jacob Palmer is a teenaged twin who is dealing with all of life’s biggest questions: What am I going to do with my life after high school? Will I get a scholarship for baseball? Does that girl really like me? Why are my parents horrible? When’s the next party? And so on. Life suddenly goes wrong though, and everything turns upside down. He died, for three minutes, but fortunately came back to life after some courageous hospital workers did their best to help him. The not so good news? His twin brother died in the accident. His life is in turmoil, with a very religious family who doesn’t understand the pain he’s going through. Then he stumbles upon Thera, a girl who is not well liked due to her Mother not adhering to the Church’s rules. And suddenly, things change. He finds a new friend, and learns about who he is as a person.
This book is very much a contemporary book all about finding yourself after loss. I appreciated it, because I have been there, done that a couple of times. It was sad at times, but also brought some smiles to my face too. It’s kind of the perfect YA novel that I needed back in the day. It came out a few years after my pain initially happened though, so I’m glad I found it now.
I am so fond of this book, and I really respect how Stacey Kade brings death and grief to the forefront. She does it in amazing ways, and I absolutely love it. This book might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it sure was mine. I really cannot wait to pick up more books by Stacey, and I’ll be screaming from the roof tops about how this book is just glorious.
It can be slow. It can be sad. And it isn’t the romantic grief fest some readers might have wanted. But, you know what? I think this story about learning to be yourself after a big loss and learning to grieve and accept the pain is beautiful. It truly is.
Also, the cover is pretty darn cool and yes, I judge by the artwork. You have to appreciate some good artwork.
Four out of five stars.
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The Author – Stacey Kade
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