Book Review: ‘More Than We Can Tell’ ~ Brigid Kemmerer
March 6, 2019
𝑀𝑜𝓇𝑒 𝒯𝒽𝒶𝓃 𝒲𝑒 𝒞𝒶𝓃 𝒯𝑒𝓁𝓁 𝒷𝓎 𝐵𝓇𝒾𝑔𝒾𝒹 𝒦𝑒𝓂𝓂𝑒𝓇𝑒𝓇
Publication Date: March 6, 2018
Publisher: Bloomsbury Children’s
Series: Letters To The Lost, #2
Summary: Rev Fletcher is battling the demons of his past. But with loving adoptive parents by his side, he’s managed to keep them at bay…until he gets a letter from his abusive father and the trauma of his childhood comes hurtling back.
Emma Blue spends her time perfecting the computer game she built from scratch, rather than facing her parents’ crumbling marriage. She can solve any problem with the right code, but when an online troll’s harassment escalates, she’s truly afraid.
When Rev and Emma meet, they both long to lift the burden of their secrets and bond instantly over their shared turmoil. But when their situations turn dangerous, their trust in each other will be tested in ways they never expected.
𝑀𝓎 𝑅𝒶𝓉𝒾𝓃𝑔: ☆☆☆☆☆
More Than We Can Tell was incredible. I laughed. I cried. I got butterflies in my stomach. All the feels. There were times where I read a sentence or paragraph, stared into space and then read it over again just because it was so powerful.
Rev’s chapters were intense. His distress over the sudden return of his biological father, his internal thoughts, the memories he dwells on – it felt so real and it kinda broke this reader’s heart. I loved the relationship between Rev and his adoptive parents (and I may or may not have cried during a few of their scenes together…). They are a perfect family in the sense that they don’t have it all together, but they still care about each other at the end of the day. I was also fascinated by Rev’s strong beliefs. It was more than just blind faith. Rev’s abusive father often misused scripture to keep him in line, yet Rev formed a close bond with religion rather than abandoning it. I admired that, even if at times, it might have seemed easier to turn his back on everything.
I was really impressed with Emma being a gamer girl (and one designing her own game no less!). The situations she found herself in online were portrayed realistically – especially handling trolls and rude comments from fellow gamers. It’s sickening how mean and downright harassing people can be in-game, and Brigid Kemmerer showed that side of the internet very well. One of the main conflicts in this book was how both Rev and Emma fear becoming their parents. Rev was constantly on edge, afraid that one day he wouldn’t be able to control his emotions and would end up like his biological father. Emma started to show signs of her mother’s rude remarks and irrational behavior. As the two grew closer to each other, they began to voice these concerns and help each other face their fears.
One particular thing about Rev that I found myself relating to was his “fear” of books featuring magic. In the part of the story, Rev mentioned that he’d never been allowed to read them. When his adoptive mother began reading one of the HP books to him, he could imagine demons dragging him to hell because he was listening to her read about magic. I grew up without reading LotR or HP or most other books containing magic (and no, I didn’t have radical parents like Rev), and while I’ve begun reading through LotR, I still feel a bit uncomfortable regarding HP. Although I have nothing against them, magic-y books have often rubbed me the wrong way because it was how I was brought up, and so I loved how Brigid Kemmerer acknowledged that through Rev’s perspective. It made me relate to him even more.
The description of violence throughout the book, especially Rev’s recollection of abuse as a child, was pretty gut-wrenching. While the scenes were relatively short, they still packed a lot of weight.
Language is used infrequently. Rev himself has a dislike for cursing.
Infrequent kissing. Emma receives innuendo-filled messages from a trolling gamer, which are described in small detail.
Overall, More Than We Can Tell is a fantastic novel packed with important topics and lots of heart. Recommended for 15+.