After finishing The Survival Kit by Donna Freitas, I had to immediately let my contemporary loving friends know how great it is. I practically burst into song with praises for The Survival Kit. You see, on first glass at the description, a reader might thing blah, joust another grief book, but I’m here to say with ALL my wisdom – don’t dismiss The Survival Kit. Donna Freitas’s style is similar to Sarah Dessen and honestly The Survival Kit is such a tender book, I loved it.
Rose’s mother died of cancer over the summer. Bereft, Rose finds herself unable to enjoy the same things she did before – music, her boyfriend Chris, cheerleading. Overcome by grief, Rose looks for a favorite dress of her mother’s and finds a survival kit there — with tools to help Rose move past her pain. What ensues is a touching read with unexpected characters, swoons, and yes, some tears.
Yo, I am ALL about a quiet character driven novel. The Survival Kit is one of those books. I thought I would dislike Rose because she’s an it-girl. But you guys, she’s genuine. And then her cheerleader friends I thought would be mean and backbiting. NOPE. Oh, you guys, I feel for Rose’s BFF Krupa, an Indian girl who gave just the right amount of space and tough love.
THEN there is Will, the landscaper hockey player boy who captivates Rose. He’s far from perfect, but brings the swoons hardcore. What I love about him is that he is absolutely not a dick. I hate that I have to point that out about a character, but okay, yes he does some things that I personally, would not do, but when it comes down to it, he’s a great male character.
The plot of The Survival Kit by Donna Freitas isn’t action, action, action – but one drive by the personal growth of the characters. I had deep emotions for the characters – which I think comes from how real The Survival Kit feels. Authentic emotions feel the page. I did not feel manipulated into tears. Instead, I cheered whenever Rose would figure out what an item from her survival kit was for, and whenever her support system would come together. I love that. I like reading a book where I am not constantly waiting for the other shoe to drop. And maybe, I make it sound boring because it’s not dramarama, BUT if you are reading for emotions and connections, The Survival Kit has you covered.
If you are like me and love quiet, character driven books, just place a hold on The Survival Kit at your library or order it. SERIOUSLY CONTEMPORARY GOLD UP IN HURRRR.
Disclosure: Borrowed from my local library.