Phantom Limbs

Phantom Limbs

How did I get it?:
I received it from Walker Books in exchange for an honest review!


Otis and Meg were inseparable until her family abruptly moved away after the terrible accident that left Otis’s little brother dead and both of their families changed forever. Since then, it’s been three years of radio silence, during which time Otis has become the unlikely protégé of eighteen-year-old Dara—part drill sergeant, part friend—who’s hell-bent on transforming Otis into the Olympic swimmer she can no longer be. But when Otis learns that Meg is coming back to town, he must face some difficult truths about the girl he’s never forgotten and the brother he’s never stopped grieving. As it becomes achingly clear that he and Meg are not the same people they were, Otis must decide what to hold on to and what to leave behind. Quietly affecting, this compulsively readable debut novel captures all the confusion, heartbreak, and fragile hope of three teens struggling to accept profound absences in their lives.


I had heard some buzz around Phantom Limbs, so when I was given the opportunity to read this powerful debut, I jumped at the chance. Phantom Limbs is a fantastic, accomplished debut. I was engrossed from the start.

The story centres around Otis and Meg who used to be inseparable until an awful accident in which Otis’s younger brother died. It affected both of their families, leading to Meg and her family moving away. Since the accident, Otis hadn’t heard from Meg. He became close to Dara, a senior, who was training Otis in the hope he would become the Olympic swimmer she always wanted to be. Otis learns that Meg is coming back to town. Both Otis and Meg have to face the past and either move on and away from it or learn to deal with the past, even if it has changed them.

I couldn’t put this book down. I was completely captivated by the characters. I wanted to see if all was going to end well for them. It’s not an easy journey. It’s emotional and Paula Garner really does take you on a journey with the characters. I loved that the characters aren’t flawless. It makes them even more realistic. There’s so much loss, regret, loneliness but there’s also love and moments of humour. It really was a special read to me. It for some reason, just wasn’t a 5 star. I have a feeling it could be for many readers though.

Would I recommend it?:
Of course! 4.5 stars

If you’re a fan of realistic, emotional YA reads then this book is for you!

2 thoughts on “Phantom Limbs

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