Publisher: Amulet Books
Synopsis from Goodreads:
Rebecca Blue is a rebel with an attitude whose life is changed by a chance encounter with a soon-to-be dead girl. Rebel (as she’s known) decides to complete the dead girl’s bucket list to prove that choice, not chance, controls her fate. In doing so, she unexpectedly opens her mind and heart to a world she once dismissed—a world of friendships, family, and faith. With a shaken sense of self, she must reevaluate her loner philosophy—particularly when she falls for Nate, the golden boy do-gooder who never looks out for himself. Perfect for fans of Jay Asher’s blockbuster hit Thirteen Reasons Why, Coriell’s second novel features her sharp, engaging voice along with realistic drama and unforgettable characters.
After reading a fantastic bucket list novel earlier (The F-It List), I couldn’t wait to start Goodbye, Rebel Blue due to its somewhat similar premise.
Rebecca’s (aka Rebel’s) story is a vivid one, full of emotion and angst. I had to adjust to her personality at the beginning because she was more annoying than quirky. Luckily, she grew out of this pretty quickly.
Reading about Rebel completing another’s bucket list wasn’t as exciting as I hoped. A lot of the action seemed to happen “off screen”. The novel isn’t truly about one giant life-fulfilling adventure so much as one teen’s coming-of-age story.
Along the way of her mission, Rebel starts to see and hear the ghost of the author of the bucket list. This element just didn’t work for me because Rebel had enough making her feel isolated that it just felt like overkill. These scenes were just odd and unnecessary.
I wanted more from Nate than I got. I think parts of his development were missing. He would jump from one decision to another without really explaining why. It was mainly a problem at the end of the novel because he changes his mind without any hint of doing so.
I think a stronger conclusion would have really increased my appreciation of the novel. Rebel’s motives and story are all wrapped up, but not Nate’s nor their respective family’s.
The unique bucket list element was enjoyable, but in the end it just joins the pile of angst-y finding yourself novels.