The Infinite Moment of Us by Lauren Myracle
Publication Date: August 27, 2013
Publisher: Amulet Books
Target audience: Mature young adult
Keywords: high school graduation, summer before college, sex, friendships, secrets
Format read: ARC Paperback from BEA via Elena at Novel Sounds!
Summary: Post-graduation life brings Wren and Charlie together the summer before each of them go off in separate directions. Wren is wrestling with making a choice that (for once) her parent’s did not make for her, and Charlie isn’t sure he’ll ever be able to move on from his past and put himself and his needs first. It’s a summer of first love, discovery, heartbreak before a new life journey begins for each. Will their relationship survive?
The summer before I left for college was pretty intense. Between getting used to the idea of leaving my childhood home for college and falling pretty desperately in love with someone who was not going with me, it was quite a summer.
The Infinite Moment of Us really encapsulated so many of those emotions I remember feeling. Fear of moving forward (with a little bit of excitement thrown in), how difficult it was to break away from my parents (and vice versa), and most prominently, how addicting and all-consuming falling in love for the first time could be.
Wren and Charlie come from totally different worlds, and have led vastly different lives up until the moment events seem to naturally fall together and they become inseparable. Suddenly, Wren has someone to share her dreams with, someone who will encourage and support her without laying down the rules for her, and Charlie has someone in his life who truly truly cares for him and makes him feel loved. Their relationship couldn’t happen at a better (and worst) time, really. Throughout my reading, I kept wondering how it would all end in three months. Would they go in their own directions or would their love for each other cause them to realign their futures so they could be together?
Myracle’s writing style is so unique in this book; it seesaws between beautiful euphoric passages and the rawness of sexuality. But she relies on telling the reader most of these characters’ feelings, instead of showing them and those missing pieces made it hard for me to connect with Wren and Charlie’s story sometimes. It felt a little convenient, a bit too easy and romanticized and I know in my reading I really like my relationships to feel grounded. Wren and Charlie’s story felt so dreamlike; I kept losing my grip on it.
What I absolutely loved was watching a main character unleash her sexuality. Wren felt so brave because of Charlie’s attraction and his feelings for her, and I loved watching this other part of her come free. It was so uncomfortably relatable and I could feel just how powerful Wren’s passion for Charlie made her. She was truly discovering a new part of herself that summer and it was really moving to see them bring their relationship to a whole new level. (Though the use of the word “cock” from Charlie’s perspective was so jarring. Why is that word so harsh?)
While certain plotlines (Charlie’s ex, in particular) and the exclusivity of Wren and Charlie’s love bubble left me a little bit torn over The Infinite Moment of Us, it was really the nostalgia factor that I liked most. Even when it meant remembering some of my own embarrassing and over-the-top experiences and all the blunders that came along with them. Plus I really enjoyed Wren’s best friend, Tess, and her boyfriend, P.G. Seperately they had so much personality, and together, well, they had the kind of relationship I wished I could have had when I was 18.
I think P.G. actually sums up The Infinite Moment of Us best at one point: “Leave the poor kids alone. They’re young and in love. What more do you need to know?”