They’re young. They’re in love. They’re on the run.
Zoe wants to save Will as much as Will wants to save Zoe. When Will turns eighteen, they decide to run away together. But they never expected their escape to be so fraught with danger....
When the whole world is after you, sometimes it seems like you can’t run fast enough.
Nobody But Us, told in alternating perspectives from Will and Zoe, is an unflinching novel, in turns heartbreaking and hopeful, about survival, choices, and love...and how having love doesn’t always mean that you get a happy ending.
Nobody But Us is a beautiful story filled with hope, love, and heartbreak. I was almost in tears by the end! Kristin Halbrook has written an amazing debut novel, and her writing is phenomenal. I finished this book in two days - it's the kind of book that's really hard to put down. I was actually surprised by how much I liked it, because I'm not usually into books like this. That just goes to show how amazing Kristin Halbrook's writing is!
Will and Zoe are very troubled teens, and what they want more than anything is freedom. Freedom from the depressing, bleak lives they live. This freedom came with a cost, though. A very high cost. Will and Zoe remind me of Echo and Noah from Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry. So if you loved Pushing the Limits, I guarantee you'll really like this one too. The dual narration is great in this book, mostly because Will and Zoe have very distinctive voices. In Zoe's POV, you get to read Kristin Halbrook's lovely writing as well as Zoe's innermost thoughts - her uncertainty, her love for Will, her determination to gain freedom. In Will's, you get to experience the rough emotions he goes through and his fierce desire to save Zoe. Their relationship has its ups and downs throughout the novel, but it stays true.
To be honest, I wasn't a huge fan of Zoe's character. She was a complete pushover, and it still annoyed me even though I get that she's had a troubled past. I also did not agree with a lot of her decisions, especially one huge one near the end of the novel. I wanted to go into the book and smack her on the head! What I did like was that she was willing to see past Will's tough exterior as well as all his shortcomings. She loves Will for who he is, and she really does want the best for him.
I really liked Will's character. He reminded me so much of Noah from Pushing the Limits! I guess I have a soft spot for guys with troubled pasts, so of course I loved Will. He was adorable, the way he wanted to protect Zoe from everything that would possibly hurt her, and the way he was so gentle and patient with her even though it's not in his nature to be. I honestly don't think I would have been able to show that much restraint with Zoe! I would have snapped at her multiple times. But Will doesn't do that. Okay, once, but he apologized so profusely after! He loves Zoe unconditionally, and that was beautiful to see. If you don't love Will already, after reading the stuff I've mentioned above, get this. He. Is. Hilarious! Yeah, even though he's had a terrible live getting moved around from home to home, he's still maintained a great sense of humour.
“You want to stay here? What if the rooms are as bad as the outside?”
I shrug. “We just need someplace warm, right?”
“You, me, a bunch of bedbugs, maybe a dead body under the mattress. We’ll all stay real toasty.”I love Will! Also, the banter between Will and Zoe is really funny too.
“I’ll build a big house.”
“What, out of cardboard?”
“You think that’s all I’m good for?”Even though they're on the run for their lives, they keep up a good spirit and their love for each other keeps them going. You can actually feel the immensity of their love! One thing I found hard to believe, though, was the fact that they've only known each other for two months. Two months! And they already love each other more than anything in the whole world, and Zoe is willing to run away with Will regardless of the consequences. I guess maybe the fact that they're really troubled is a factor in this. Like they just really need someone to care for them. In that way I'm really happy Will found Zoe. He deserves whatever happiness he can get.
I will warn you about the ending, though. I knew there wasn't going to be a happily-ever-after when I read the synopsis on Goodreads. But that doesn't mean the pain was any less potent. It was truly heartbreaking! I was in a depressed stupor for at least a few hours after reading this, and not a lot of books can make me feel like that. This book told me a lot about the harsh reality of life. We're incredibly lucky to have such comfortable lives, and most people never stop to think about people like Will and Zoe. Nobody But Us is one of those books that gives you a lot of perspective, and I really liked it even though it's out of my comfort zone.
Nobody But Us is a stunning debut you do not want to miss! It's captivating from start to finish, and I already feel like I want to re-read it. It doesn't seem like a debut at all - the characters are so realistic, and the plot is so intense, I felt like I was right there with Will and Zoe on the run! I would recommend this book to all the contemporary lovers out there, and I'm definitely looking forward to more books from Kristin Halbrook!
*Thank you to HarperTeen for providing me with an eGalley for review*