Tears, tears for days.
I don’t often cry reading books. There are only a few in recent memory that have even brought me close. I *love* connecting with characters, and I definitely feel sad while reading at times- but for a variety of reasons I can usually keep the actual tears under control. Just thinking about sweet Lily, her octopus, and her quirky owner, Ted Flask, makes me teary, though!
I don't even know where to start with this book - it is just so good you guys!
Synopsis from goodreads.com:
Combining the emotional depth of The Art of Racing in the Rain with the magical spirit of The Life of Pi, Lily and the Octopus is an epic adventure of the heart.
When you sit down with Lily and the Octopus, you will be taken on an unforgettable ride.
The magic of this novel is in the read, and we don’t want to spoil it by giving away too many details.
We can tell you that this is a story about that special someone: the one you trust, the one you can’t live without. For Ted Flask, that someone special is his aging companion Lily, who happens to be a dog. Lily and the Octopus reminds us how it feels to love fiercely, how difficult it can be to let go, and how the fight for those we love is the greatest fight of all. Remember the last book you told someone they had to read? Lily and the Octopus is the next one.
What I Liked:
There is just so much to love here! I don’t even know where to start. The beginning! The middle! The end (oh em gee that ending)!
I think first and foremost I absolutely loved the writing. I tabbed the crap out of this book while I was reading, which for me is always a good sign. I love writing down and collecting quotes from books that I have read, and I really find that books with a lot of those takeaway moments are my favorite. There were so many nuggets of wisdom, inspiration, and just general life truth in this novel. Loved it.
I love that this book is sad but also incredibly hopeful. I was really concerned for Ted while reading initially, and I think most readers will be as well. He strikes me like such a great guy, and I immediately connected with him and wanted the best for him. Ted also seems lonely - really lonely. The kind of lonely that talks to and plays with his dog as though he is a real person. I loved the connection he had with Lily, but it also drew my attention to the lack of human interaction he had. As an introvert, I can definitely relate to his homebody-ness and how naturally that gap can be filled by an animal. My absolute favorite part of the book was the idea of another person being able to fill the gap left by an animal, or anyone who passes. Such a hopeful message about recovering from loss.
This book was *such* a great debut novel from an awesome author. I can’t wait to read more from Rowley!
What I Didn’t Like :I got a little frustrated with the main character at times. For one, Lily's tumor being called "octopus", when you know he knows it is a tumor and everyone else does too just crossed out of endearing territory. Ultimately though, that was- I'm sure- purposeful, but as a reader I definitely struggled with it.
Loved this book though and I highly recommend it! Definitely one of my favorite reads so far in 2016!