Author: Heather Davis
Publication Date: April 12, 2010
Amy, a sixteen-year-old recovering from an abusive relationship, moves to the country to start a new life with her aunt–all she wants is for everything to be different. In the clearing at the back of Aunt Mae’s property, she makes an amazing discovery—Henry, a boy stuck in the endless summer of 1944. Henry and his world become Amy’s refuge and she begins to learn that some moments are worth savoring. But when the past and present come crashing together, both of them must find the courage to face what is meant to be, even if it means losing each other forever.Recovering from an abusive relationship, Amy goes to her great aunt Mae's house to run from her problems and start anew. When she discovers Henry's life on the other side of the clearing, she is immediately drawn to his world and the inexplicable connection they share. But their relationship might not last; for Henry's situation may be far too complicated to hold their bond. Their hearts are on the line and their feelings for each other are quickly growing. It may be too late to avoid heartache.
The Clearing is a beautiful, bittersweet book that portrays the hardships and obstacles that people like Amy and Henry have to go through, just for love. It focuses on perfectly capturing the essence of love and showing its different sides. The Clearing shows the ups and downs, and also depicts how people can mistake 'infatuation' or 'like' for love.
The concept of The Clearing is extraordinary yet convincing. The idea of the mist in the clearing separating two different times; present and 1944 stands out well and is solidified with the realistic references in the book. The Clearing has a simplistic backdrop that gives the plot a more intimate and rustic feel to it. Readers will be completely interlocked and captivated with the charming countryside where Amy and Henry reside.
Amy's voice as a narrator is clear and concise with a comfortable tone. Amy has been through a lot, and readers will resonate with her feelings and experiences as Amy strives to get over her abusive relationship. Henry, from a completely different time, is a well-established character from the very beginning and yearns for something different...something only Amy can give. Their relationship coincides with Henry's family's developing revelation of the situation they're in and this further complicates things between their boundaries. They won't get all of what they want, but they do get to experience something very valuable; love. Even if their romance is quite rushed, it's easy to overlook that tainting aspect and focus on the subtle and important messages in The Clearing.
Amy's situation is uncommon but the reader will become in tune with her situation because of the normalities that are present in the novel. Amy deals with school, trying to fit in, friends, and family problems just like many other teens today. Henry and his world serves as an escape from her unhappy reality which ultimately elaborates on the concept of reality and fantasy comparison.
Simple, beautiful, and compassionate, The Clearing is full of depth and simple messages that readers may have forgotten. It's reminiscent of quiet summer nights, the lovely countryside, and the slight paranormal tinge. The Clearing is a magical and thought-provoking read that will make readers truly question their morals and beliefs of love. A+ =)
The Bottom Line: Breathtaking, simple, and balanced.
My reaction/enjoyment: 10/10
Total Score: 97/100 (A+)