Publisher - Katherine Tegen Books
Released - May 10th 2016
Pre-order - Amazon / B&N
All she needs is one night to be anyone she wants.
Julie is desperate for a change. So she heads to New Orleans with her youth group to rebuild houses and pretend her life isn’t a total mess. But between her super-clingy team leader and her way-too-chipper companions, Julie feels more trapped than ever.
In a moment of daring, she ditches her work clothes for DIY fairy wings and heads straight into the heart of Mid-Summer Mardi Gras, where she locks eyes with Miles, an utterly irresistible guy with a complicated story of his own. And for once, Julie isn’t looking back. She jumps at the chance to see the real New Orleans, and in one surreal night, they dance under the stars, share their most shameful secrets, and fall in love.
But their adventure takes an unexpected turn when an oncoming hurricane changes course. As the storm gains power and Julie is pulled back into chaos she finds pretending everything is fine is no longer an option.
I am feeling so much book-love towards Mia Garcia's debut Even If the Sky Falls! I am mainly a contemporary reader, and once I finished with this one, I felt like I was satisfied on all fronts - there's family narrative, a coming-of-age type of finding yourself pondering, friendships, romance, an interesting setting and so much more. In addition to all of that, the writing is so exchanging and descriptive and pretty much flows out of the pages and brings the characters and the setting alive.
After living too long in the middle of all the mess going on at her home, Julie signs in for a volunteering position in New Orleans in order to escape. Her brother, home from service, is battling with PTSD and seems to be losing; her parents fail to see what is going on; and in addition to that, she has severed her relationship with her best friends. New Orleans seemed like the perfect solution, but when Tavis, a clingy team leader fighting for Julie's attention gets a bit too annoying, Jules escapes again, this time to Mid-summer Mardi Gras in New Orleans.
I've been interested about visiting New Orleans for AGES now, so when I heard about this book, I was instantly more excited about it because of the setting. I loved how Mia Garcia brings New Orleans alive in this book - it is not only a flat setting the events happen in, but a living and breathing thing, a character in its own right. New Orleans, as we all know, has been the victim of natural disasters, which is an undercurrent that runs throughout the novel as he characters have to deal with the threat of a Category Two hurricane coming their way and potentially destroying their one night of fun and getting to know each other.
I really liked Jules as a character and the way the author reveals more information about her as the novel processes through narration. Even if the Sky Falls is essentially Julie's story and though the principal events take place during single night, the reader is introduced to events from the past through Julie pondering the past events etc. The pacing of the novel is extremely well done, and these "revelations" about Julie's past are organized well - little hints into what has happened to Julie kept me reading, constantly guessing what could have led Julie to where she is now.
Miles is such a swoon worthy character I was able to fall in love despite the fact that he isn't as extensively developed character as Julie is. As I said, this is essentially Julie's story, and much of what we learn of Miles is from Julie's point of view. Though I am normally a fan of more established love interests, the fact that this novel takes place during one single night, it is completely understandable that Miles does not share his WHOLE life story with Jules. I really enjoyed the connection between Julie's and Miles and I definitely wouldn't mind reading more about them.
In addition to Julie's and Miles, the book is filled with interesting supporting characters, like the people the two meet during the Mardi Gras, as well as Julie's brother, Julie's friends and as mentioned before, the city of New Orleans itself. Every supporting character has some sort of purpose in the novel, but they never take away from the story of Julie and Miles, which I appreciated. In general, Even if the Sky Falls is a book with amazing characters supported by brilliant writing. What more could you ask for?