If you were a teenager living in Seattle during the mid 1980s to the early 90s, the grunge alternative rock scene was everything. And if you had some musical talent, you formed a band with dreams of being the next Nirvana or Pearl Jam. Zane had those dreams. And his biggest fan was Skye. She believed in Zane’s talent and the two became best friends as he romanced girls closer to his age, even her older sister Lauren. The two friends planned to escape to LA where Zane would try to get a record contract. Skye would draw and sell her pictures on the Venice Beach boardwalk. When tragedy strikes, Zane and Skye comfort one another and ignite their hidden passion. Skye, only seventeen and still in high school, learns she is pregnant and decides to leave home and Seattle. The troubled Zane finds Skye and tries to be there for Skye and their child. The story moves ahead to 2002. Skye is raising her daughter in New Mexico and has a loving boyfriend she’s planning to marry. Tragedy strikes once again, and Zane and Skye reconnect back in Seattle. Zane would love to get Skye and his daughter back in his life and prove he has changed. But Skye has moved on and has made a new life for herself and her daughter.
This heavily character-driven story presents two people who are haunted by their past. Both are dealing with guilt and regret over the choices they’ve made. The question is whether their best chance for happiness lies with them being together or apart. Author Jennifer Haupt takes us on their journey. It took a while for me to connect with these characters, but I came to care about them. Come As You Are captured the time periods well. And if you are a fan of grunge, you’ll enjoy the references – nice to see bands like Mudhoney and Screaming Trees mentioned.
Many thanks to Central Avenue Publishing, NetGalley, Edelweiss and the author for the opportunity to read this engaging book prior to its publication.
Rated 4 out of 5 stars.
Publication Date: March 1, 2022.