Sometimes the right book just come to you at the right time. “And Then We Ran” came to me when I needed to be entertained. A lot of my reads can be a little taxing, so when a tale dealing with serious teen issues told with light voice comes along, you just listen.
This book is showing what many young adults come to at a point in their life, choosing what to do next. But what happens when you know what you want, but your parents have other ideas and refuse to listen? Well, you elope to a place where you can get married at 17 and finally take control of your life…because that makes sense, right?!
Desperation can push people to take the most drastic measures and for our childhood friends Megan and Elliott it is the best chance they feel they have, to do what they want and own their future.
While Megan and Elliott have defined their marriage based on mutual gains, Becca, Megan’s friend and Elliot’s big brother Sean, both secondary characters with a story of their own, have started exploring what is happening between them. Their budding relationship is an interesting parallel to the well planned, arranged quicky wedding that Megan and Elliot are about to embark on. Sean and Becca are trying to figure things out and whatever it is, it is not taking them down the aisle anytime soon.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book, it took me to a time where I was 17, feeling that I was also banging my head against a brick wall when I was not heard.
Looking back now, I remember the “end of the worlds” feelings if things did not go my way and how everything seemed heightened while no one understood me. This is basically what “And Then We Ran” is all about, teenagers the road trip of their life.
Thanking team @StripesBooks for providing me with a review copy of this title.
…Some bonus material from the author Katy Cannon “A Photographic Memory”. Enjoy!!
My younger brother has an almost photographic memory. He remembers every argument we ever had, he can memorise text books just before an exam and he’s much better at recalling song lyrics than me. Birthdays and anniversaries are, of course, a slightly different matter. But overall, he remembers stuff.
My memory is considerably less photographic. I forgot my school bag every day for a year and a half, and had to run home across the road to fetch it. I’ve got much better over the years at training my memory, but I still keep endless lists and reminders in my phone to keep me on track with things I simply must not forget.
And when it comes to remembering events and dates from my childhood, I quite often just call my brother to ask him what happened. Or I pull out my photo books.
I’ve taken photos since I could first persuade my parents to let me have a camera, back when I was about eight or nine. And even before then, I loved looking through their old photos – of me as a baby, or the times before I was even born, or people who died before I was even thought of. I kept albums filled with my favourites, all tucked neatly into photo corners on acid free paper.
But then, around 2005, I switched to a digital camera, and the photos I took just started piling up on my hard drive, hardly ever being looked at. Eventually, I decided to do something about that.
For the past ten years, every year, I’ve had a photo book printed, filled to the brim with all my favourite photos I’ve taken over the past twelve months. Whenever I need to remember what happened when, like when my son started walking, or what year a friend got married, I pull out my photo books and start flicking through to find the relevant photographic evidence.
And so my memories are kept, safely bound in book form, ready for me to relive again and again, whenever I want to visit them.
In my latest book, And Then We Ran, my heroine, Megan, wants to be a photographer. At the beginning of the story, she mostly photographs landscapes and still lifes. But as the book progresses she shifts her focus to portraits, to capturing people, and moments and memories – partly influenced by how the photos she took of her sister Lizzie, before her death, are all her family have left to remember Lizzie by.
It’s so easy to take photos today – on our phones, or tables, or cameras – and never look at them again. So today, why not take a moment to look back over a favourite picture, to find a memory in photo form, and live that moment again.
Here’s the memory I’m reliving today:
This photo of me with my two brothers (the one in the middle has the freakish memory) was taken in London, the summer after I turned 16. We spent five days staying in a hotel right near Regent’s Park and exploring the city. We saw Miss Saigon, and Guys and Dolls, we ate in fabulous restaurants, and I haunted every bookshop on Charing Cross Road. And, as you can see, our parents took lots of photos of us with actual cannons. This was, I believe, the summer the older of my two brothers and I decided that the visual gag of Cannons with cannons really wasn’t as funny as they thought. (My youngest brother, as you can see, thought it was hilarious. He still does, even at 27. And I can’t tell you how many more photos exist of some combination of us all with cannons.)
Every time I look at this photo, I feel the city summer heat, I taste the food, and I remember that time spent with my family. And I smile.