When You Were Here (Hardcover)
Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 9780316209748, 272pp.
Publication Date: June 4, 2013
Other Editions of This Title:
Danny's mother lost her five-year battle with cancer three weeks before his graduation-the one day that she was hanging on to see.
Now Danny is left alone, with only his memories, his dog, and his heart-breaking ex-girlfriend for company. He doesn't know how to figure out what to do with her estate, what to say for his Valedictorian speech, let alone how to live or be happy anymore.
When he gets a letter from his mom's property manager in Tokyo, where she had been going for treatment, it shows a side of a side of his mother he never knew. So, with no other sense of direction, Danny travels to Tokyo to connect with his mother's memory and make sense of her final months, which seemed filled with more joy than Danny ever knew. There, among the cherry blossoms, temples, and crowds, and with the help of an almost-but-definitely-not Harajuku girl, he begins to see how it may not have been ancient magic or mystical treatment that kept his mother going. Perhaps, the secret of how to live lies in how she died.
About the Author
Praise For When You Were Here…
"Danny's journey to healing is heartbreaking, hopeful, and full of luminescent beauty... This gem of a book will lead readers to ponder life, love, death, and everything in between."—School Library Journal
"Despite the sad topic, it's refreshing to read a story centered on a boy's love for his mother."—Booklist
"The book enticingly combines violin-worthy levels of loss with Danny's vigor and solid testosterone levels..."—BCCB