Student reviews book, The Last Forever

Nikki Lyssy

I have read a large variety of books in my life, but never had I read one as beautifully crafted and full of emotion and knowledge as The Last Forever. Written by award-winning author Deb Calleti, the book stays true to her authentic writing style while incorporating the kind of plot twists that make a person put off everything else to read.

High school junior Tess Sedgewick stopped believing in the power of forever when her mom died, leaving behind the rare, soon-to-be extinct pixiebell plant that she has had her whole life. Tess knows it is her job to keep the plant alive, a task that is monumental now that her mother is gone. But when her father decides in a spur-of-the-moment decision that they need a major change of scenery, two days before the end of her junior year, they pack up and embark on a road trip to the Grand Canyon. It may be their destination, but it’s not where the two will end up. As days crawl by and the relationship between Tess and her father becomes increasingly strained, Dear Old Dad decides it is time for a drastic change, and brings her to the town of her estranged grandmother. Through a summer full of twists and turns, Tess’ life is turned upside down when she meets Henry Lark in the library, a boy full of knowledge, dreams, hope – and a yearning love of plants. When Tess’ beloved plant begins to die, so does her hope of keeping her mother’s memory alive. The tragedy brings her closer to a group of loving people she never knew, and she finds herself falling in love for Henry, a boy she’s only met recently. But Henry is holding back a secret — a secret that can change everything Tess thought she knew about true love. The romance in this novel is like no other, and will keep you turning pages faster and faster.

Calleti’s writing style is admirable. She is able to mix wittiness and sensitive kindness and just the right amount of feistiness to create a perfect potion for enjoyment by all, in any season. Each chapter begins with a description of a different plant, providing insight into the research done to make this book wonderfully knowledgeable. Overall, the book taught me a great amount not only about plants, but about the true artistic ability to reel a reader in and keep them turning the page.