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I Belong

Review: Apple and Rain by Sarah Crossan

Apple and RainTitle: Apple and Rain

Author: Sarah Crossan

Genre: YA Contemporary

Series: N/A

Publication Date: May 12, 2015

Format: Hardcover, 352 Pages

ISBN-10: 1619636905 (Bloomsbury)

ISBN-13: 978-1619636903 (Bloomsbury)

Reviewed by: Zed


When Apple’s mother returns after eleven years of absence, Apple feels almost whole again. In order to heal completely, her mother will have to answer one burning question: Why did she abandon her? But just like the stormy Christmas Eve when she left, her mother’s homecoming is bittersweet. It’s only when Apple meets her younger sister, Rain-someone more lost than she is- that she begins to see things for how they really are, allowing Apple to discover something that might help her to feel truly whole again.

From the author of the acclaimed The Weight of Water comes a beautifully-crafted, moving novel about family, betrayal, and the ultimate path to healing.

Quick & Dirty: A tortured friendship with too many bottled secrets.

Opening Sentence: On the first day of Noe, the raspberries are always ripe.

Excerpt: No

The Review:

Apple and Rain is simply written, with easy to understand language so I would say it is aimed at the younger adults, although to some extent it was the simplicity of the story that drew me in…

Apple craves the return of her mother who left her as a child with her Nana on Christmas in order to pursue her dreams of becoming an actress. As it was such a long time ago, Apple has fantasized a perfect version of her mother and blames her Nana for her mum leaving, so when her mother returns it’s a test between Apple’s dreams and reality.

“She was in plays. She was living her dream.”
“She was prancing around on stage wanting to be adored by people who didn’t know her whilst her own family spent years waiting for her to come home. Some dream.”
Nana has a point. Why wasn’t our love enough for Mum? It’s a question I don’t want to think about. “But you’re religious. You’re meant to forgive. The priest says so,” I tell her.

The reader sympathisers with Apple for various reasons, the first is because her mum is hopelessly inept at being a parent, with her lack of responsibility, crazy parties, drinking, smoking and generally unreliable personality. She’s also very manipulative, knowing how much Apple adores her, she feeds her a little attention now and again to soften her up just so she can get Apple to do her bidding. It’s disgusting, really. 14 year old Apple is treated like a maid/babysitter and is given the responsibility of taking care of her half-sister who clearly has some mental issues that their mother chooses to brush aside because of her selfish nature and her blasé attitude.

All those times I was thinking that Nana was wrong, wrong, wrong. 
But she was right.
I was the wrong, wrong, wrong one to wish for things I didn’t have.
I should have been careful about my wishes. 
And I should never have wished for a sister.

Rain, the younger sister, adds a bittersweet element to the story. It’s not her fault but she ends up being the cause of everyone’s problem. Apple tries to look after Rain as much as she can but Apple’s only a child too, she’s bound to get frustrated. Rain is clearly jealous of Apple as she’s their mother’s new favourite, and it’s just very sad to see her problem being ignored the way it is.

I loved Del, the boy next door. He’s witty, smart and has the dork-like charm that fits Apple perfectly. I’m so glad he was included in this book otherwise it would have been a leeetle too depressing for the younger readers, but he added the humour that’s always needed in books like these.

Del throws his hand up. 
Mr. Gaydon looks our way. “You’re new,” he says. 
“New to the school, yes. Not new to the world. Very much established in my own life,” Del says.

The inclusion of poetry and how it can be used to help an individual as a creative output for their pain was excellently added into this story. I enjoyed reading the poems, especially Apple’s own poetry, which gave a better insight into her bottled up feelings. I’ve always found that writing helps me feel better and I could tell that it was the same for Apple.

Overall, a noteworthy read but probably better received by the younger adults due to the simple writing. Some of the characters could have done with a lot more developing, such as Apple’s father, but the main characters were interesting enough so I almost forgot about the rest!

Notable Scene:

I gaze at the moon.

“So why are you out here? Shouldn’t you be working your way through a box of After Eights?” he says.

“Not that it’s any of your business, but my dad and stepmum just told me they’re having a baby, and my nan is trying to make me act like I’m pleased. So if you could leave me alone to be depressed, I’d appreciate it.”


FTC Advisory: Bloomsbury provided me with a copy of Apple and Rain. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.


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Review: Apple and Rain by Sarah Crossan, 10.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating
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One Response to “Review: Apple and Rain by Sarah Crossan

  1. RabiahNo Gravatar

    This one feels like a pretty heart-felt story featuring slightly younger characters. The cover is absolutely gorgeous for this one as well. Need to get my hands on this one soon. Great review!

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