Nick and June Were Here: A great book dealing with love, illness, and friendships.

Nick and June were here
Page Count: 304
Nick and June were best friends for years, until their relationship suddenly turned into something more. Now, June is coping with a new diagnosis of schizophrenia, a secret she asked Nick to keep for too long. Between managing her symptoms and her parents, June is just trying to keep it together. Nick is a reluctant car thief, supporting his aunt with the money and focusing on his art whenever he can. But when June's condition…

Non-Spoiler Review 

 
I loved this book! I love any books where the main character has some kind of mental illness. I think it is fascinating being in their mind and seeing how they think. This book is a look into June who has schizophrenia but has no idea. She honestly has no idea that she has any kind of mental illness, but she knows that something is going on with her. Nick is the other POV that we follow, and he is June's boyfriend. They have been best friends since the 5th grade, but it turned into something much more than friendship.
 
I really enjoyed Nick and June's relationship. I think that Shalanda Stanley did an excellent job showing the ups and downs of a relationship where one person has a mental illness and the other person has problems as well. I loved that we got to see both of their POV's and both of their struggles. This book was an emotional rollercoaster. I had soo many different feelings while reading it.
 
I thought that the pacing of the book was well done. We start out with Nick and June already in a relationship but with the use of flashbacks we get to see how their relationship blossomed and we also get to look into their past. I really loved how much faith they had in one another to succeed and be better.
 
You can tell that Stanley crafted this story with so much care and emotion. The way everything was handled with schizophrenia was so well done. This was a very intense book, at a lot of the time I was so scared of what was going to happen to these characters. I fell in love with both June and Nick and their other close friend Bethany so easily. Stanley did a wonderful job with these characters and their development. While reading this I felt like this was such a genuine story.
 
I definitely recommend this book to anyone who loves stories like these. You won't be disappointed.
 

Character Love 

 
June - I loved being in June's head. Seeing how she had to deal with her mind and her insane thoughts were so interesting to me. I felt so bad for her at times, and going through some of her "attacks" was so intense. Although she was a teenager, I thought she seemed pretty mature for her age. And I loved her love for Nick.
 
Nick - I loved Nick, and I loved his love for June. You could tell that it was genuine, real love for him. He had a hard life but with the help of June, he was turning out okay. He was an amazing artist and I wish I could have seen some of his art! That would have been awesome to see in the book.
 
Bethany - Bethany was such a great friend to June and Nick. I loved June and Bethany's friendship. They seemed so opposite for many reasons but they genuinely loved each other and would do anything for one another. The way she cared about June was so sweet.
 

Spoilery Review

 

Spoilers Ahead

 

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This book was a super quick read for me, but I had soo many thoughts and emotions while reading it. It was hard sometimes to stop reading to take notes and jot down feelings. Here they are...

I really liked being in June's head. She was so interesting. I still am not sure how her parents had no idea there were any problems. Especially since they were in the medical field. 

I also liked Nick right away.

I loved how he painted on her. Super cool.

I was so glad that we got to see how they became friends in the first place. The story is so dang cute. I loved how Nick stuck up for her in that parking lot. How he got in a fight for her. And how he wanted to stay around her always. 

The way June believes in Nick is my favorite. I hated that he didn't believe in himself as she did. The whole thing made me sad. I could already tell something bad was going to happen. I was glad though that he was finally deciding to quit. 

Oh goodness, I was scared for John. I didn't want anything bad to happen to him

Ugh, when June's parents grounded her it made me so mad. I would have done the same thing if I was her parents but still, I hate that for her and Nick. But I was super glad that they could finally tell that something wasn't right with June. 

That bathroom scene was intense. I was scared for her. I thought she would end up hurting herself more than she already was. I couldn't imagine living like that. Not being able to control my thoughts and hearing voices telling me crazy things. 

I was so glad that Bethany called Nick and got him to come to pick them up. I was also glad, no matter how mad June was, that Bethany and Nick decided to tell her parents. That was a very good decision. It was a super emotional part, and so hard, but I love how much they care for their friend. 

The whole thing with the tornado was insane. I was so glad that they took her to the hospital. 

I really liked Dr. Keels. I was so glad that June was finally going to get the help she needed. 

The scene where Nick went to visit his dad and told him he was quitting was both good and sad. I hated that he just stood up and left after, but I totally understood it. I was still super scared for Nick. 

I seriously loved that Nick snuck in to see June. And Nick taking her up to the roof was too dang sweet. And of course, him writing "Nick and June were here" was the best. What a perfect way to work the title in! 

I could feel that something bad was about to happen to Nick. I knew there would be a cop there to catch him. Ugh, so sad. 

5-15 years!!!! That is insane! And of course, something else had to happen. I thought it was going to be John. That he died or something. Nope, Hank!! Broke my heart. I also wondered if John went AWOL, but I was wrong. 

I honestly didn't think Nick would be able to escape. I don't know why I should have known better. 

I was so glad that June was doing better and that Bethany didn't leave her side. Such a good friend. 

So I totally understood why Nick wanted June to go. But he was being so dang selfish. It was a horrible idea. To involve her in all this craziness while she was still so fragile was not smart. I was mad at Nick for a good little while. I knew he wasn't thinking right, but still, he shouldn't have been so dang selfish. He should have also been thinking about June. 

Okay, to make matters worse, when Nick left June to get that dress for her I knew it was going to be bad. He should have seen that!!! Ugh, still so mad at him. Poor June. that was a scary scene where she thought she saw her friend again. 

Wow, Nick going to see his mother was crazy. I'm glad she helped him out though. Somewhat at least. 

John! I felt so horrible for him. I was really glad that Nick was with him. As much as I didn't agree with what Nick did, I'm glad he did it, the same for June. 

I was so glad that John called the cops. That was the right thing to do. And he gave Nick time. It reminded me of what Nick and Bethany did by telling June's parents about her secret. And I know 5 years is a lot, but at least it wasn't life. 

I had a feeling Nick would do the right thing. I'm so glad that he did, and I'm sure that June was too. And he only got 3 years!!! That's amazing.  What a perfect ending!!! 

 

 

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