(Website, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads)Published by Feiwel & Friends on July 31st 2018
Genres: Contemporary, Prejudice & Racism, Romance, Social Themes, Young Adult Fiction
The last thing Elise wants is to start her senior year in a new town. But after her brother’s death in Afghanistan, she and her mother move from San Francisco to a sleepy coastal village.
When Elise meets Mati, they quickly discover how much they have in common. Mati is new to town too, visiting the U.S. with his family. Over the course of the summer, their relationship begins to blossom, and what starts out as a friendship becomes so much more.
But as Elise and Mati grow closer, her family becomes more and more uncomfortable with their relationship, and their concerns all center on one fact—Mati is Afghan.
Beautifully written, utterly compelling, and ultimately hopeful, THE IMPOSSIBILITY OF US asks—how brave can you be when your relationship is questioned by everyone you love?
This was such an emotional story… I don’t think I was expecting that when I opened it up to read the first chapter. Once I started though, I couldn’t stop and I found myself tearing through this in one sitting.
Upperman has created some really interesting characters with this story, and how fitting that we’re reading something like this now when we are seeing so much racial tension and negativity in the world.
Elise is forced to leave San Francisco for a sleepy California coastal town to support her sister-in-law and niece after the death of her brother in Afghanistan. Her plan is to ride out her time there and then get back to the city. When she arrives, she finds herself drawn to Mati. Mati is new to the area as well, visiting with his family for medical reasons. What starts as just a friendship soon becomes something more, but when her family finds out, they can’t see Mati without thinking of the death of her brother. Elise can’t understand why her family can’t see the boy beyond his Afghan background, and she can’t give up the one person she’s formed a friendship with even if it’s tearing her family from her.
Oh, you guys… parts of this book made me so mad. The attitudes and the behaviors of these grown adults who were perpetuating these racist attitudes and beliefs just were so infuriating. I love that Elise never really gave up on them though.
Of course, there is even more to the story than that, because Mati is from a different culture that has different beliefs and traditions and one, in particular, throws a wrench in any plans that Elise might have thought they could have.
If you’re looking for a beautifully told story of family, friendship and cultural differences I highly suggest picking this one up. Upperman tells a compelling story that you won’t soon forget!