When high school senior Kelsey’s identical twin sister, Michelle, dies in a car crash, Kelsey is left without her other half. The only person who doesn’t know about the tragedy is Michelle’s boyfriend, Peter, recently deployed to Afghanistan. But when Kelsey finally connects with Peter online, she can’t bear to tell him the truth. Active duty has taken its toll, and Peter, thinking that Kelsey is Michelle, says that seeing her is the one thing keeping him alive. Caught up in the moment, Kelsey has no choice: She lets Peter believe that she is her sister.
As Kelsey keeps up the act, she crosses the line from pretend to real. Soon, Kelsey can’t deny that she’s falling, hard, for the one boy she shouldn’t want.
***I received this eARC as a gift in exchange for an honest review via NetGalley & Little Brown Books for Young Readers: Poppy
A Million Miles Away is a story of tragic loss, shattered sense of self, and learning to cope. An unconventional love story, A Million Miles Away is an exploration of honor through imitation.
- Kelsey doesn’t know how to deal with the void left behind by the death of her identical twin so when the opportunity comes up to act as though Michelle were still alive, Kelsey leaps at it. The only problem is, she falls hard and gets trapped in the lie. Kelsey misses her sister so much that she effectively becomes her, takes on her personality, her likes and dislikes, and totally infiltrates her love life. As creepy as it is, it’s gut-wrenching and brutally sad. Kelsey feels like when everyone is moving on, her sister is just disappearing, a memory and she can’t live like that. Kelsey honors her sister’s memory in a really crappy, weird way but you can feel every bit of love she had for her sister.
- Peter is adorable, dorky, and quirky, his personality is fun and deep, he’s the total package. A gorgeous soldier whose romantic lines, though cheesy as sin, will make you laugh and swoon. He’s haunted by what he’s experienced and yet is able to smile, to feel free in love. It’s bittersweet knowing the truth and hearing the hope in Peter’s character for a happily ever after with Michelle.
- When Kelsey and Peter initially meet, there’s a spark, even though he was with Michelle, something was brewing beneath the surface. In some ways, their meeting was fate and you get this truly hopeful, uplifting feeling that together they can heal.
- Secondary characters had little to no function in the story. When they did appear, they were stereotypical and forgettable. Kelsey’s past is kicked to the curb and everything that mattered to her before fades into the background. This void between the past and present makes for emotionless moments when Kelsey and her friends come together.
- It was hard to see the true Kelsey beneath the disguise of her sister. There are brief glimpses of the dancing, popular party girl she once was but what mattered to her before is, for the most part, pushed aside.
- Kesley is a great actress, knew her sister well, and yet, things still didn’t add up. Throughout the story, Kesley even remarks that she didn’t know a lot about her sister, that they grew apart. It was unbelievable that Kelsey fooled everyone so easily, especially Peter, but was quickly discovered by people who didn’t know both girls. I’m sure that Kelsey and Michelle didn’t kiss the same way or even have the same catch phrases and for someone who was supposed to be head over heels for Michelle not to be able to tell the difference was strange.
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