Reviews

Find Me, by André Aciman

wkariuki_'s review against another edition

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5.0

Loved loved loved this book almost as much as Call me By your name. My favorite chapter has to be the last one especially the part with Elio and Oliver and Oliver having breakfast.
The book stands out for me cause it’s so real. Life does happen and then we forget about what’s important and this book takes you through those motions. Absolutely would recommend to anyone who’s on the fence about it after Call me By your name.

carlos_bwe's review against another edition

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1.0

Hachee machee was this not enjoyable to read. It took me months to do it, too. I bought it on release and 50 pages later had to put it down, incredulous. Every time I tried to come back to it I would find myself stunned by the horrible characterizations, the awkward dialogue and the misplaced efforts to please fans of the first book.
Call Me By Your Name felt like Summer holidays: lazy, hot, and prone to magnifying feelings and emotions that maybe would not endure Fall (if Grease taught us anything, is that Summer love stories are so extraordinary that they crumble under the weight of normalcy). This feels like browsing Tinder at 4 am outside the club.

malaynachang's review against another edition

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2.0

MY OPINION: **

I tried really really hard to like this book. I enjoyed the first one and rated it a solid four stars. But somehow, this one just didn't hit the same and instead was boring and unenjoyable.

This is not unusual judging from the other reviews I have read. I think after CMBYN we all have such high expectations for a sequel to an amazing book but this one fell quite short from what I was waiting for.

The book is set decades after the first one with everyone living their own lives. It's divided into four parts and I'm going to go into my separate thoughts on each individual part.

1. Samuel and Miranda. The first part is all about Elio's father, Sami, and a woman he meets on the train, Miranda. I must say that this was my least favorite part. Besides the fact that I simply did not care in the slightest about Elio's DAD, it was quite unnerving to read. Samuel felt so out of character and I could not imagine the wise old man from the first book being the same person as this man. The relationship between Miranda and Samuel was even worse. Miranda is decades younger than him which wasn't the big problem but it was the way that they suddenly fell in love. I felt no chemistry, no sparks, nothing. I'm honestly confused as to how they even got together. Samuel was kinda creepy, to be quite honest, as he talked about wanting to kiss and do things to this young woman that he just met. Um. It was a bit strange. This was just not the best part. Within like twelve hours, they're making love, getting tattoos, and talking about having a family together and I was like um what. Overall, this section was just not for me. I understand why it's the most talked about section that deters people from reading this book. --> 1 star

2. Elio meets an older man named Michel who he begins to have a little fling with. They were cute and all but obviously it was never going to work out in the long run because Elio's heart still belonged to Oliver and always will. I actually liked this section of the book for the most part because it showed how hard it was for Elio to let in other people that weren't Oliver and how important it was for him to have this relationship and realize that he still needed Oliver in the end. The biggest problem for me was the age gap again because I feel like Aciman has a weird thing with them and it's always included in his books. It felt unnecessary at this point because they were having the exact same conversations just in different words (the "I'm too old for you" and the "No, you're not, I love you" type of thing). --> 3 stars

3. This section was told from Oliver's perspective. I found this interesting because it's something we did not get to see at all in the first book. Oliver has a wife and children but one day hears a Bach piece and is suddenly transported back in time to his memories of Elio and everything that happened in CMBYN. Oliver has a few passages about wanting to be with both a man and a woman at the same time which felt a little creepy with the way he was talking about these people that we don't know as they're not fully developed characters. --> 2 stars

4. FINALLY. Elio and Oliver are reunited. But I was SO disappointed. We were not fed. We are not satisfied with the FLIMSY amount of FLUFF that we get about them. I want to know what happened. Did they get married? What happened? How does Little Ollie play in to their love story? No. It was like 10 pages (I was reading on a Kindle so I'm estimating) of nothing. We needed more than that. We deserved more than that especially because I'm 99.9% sure that they're the main reason why people read this book. I would have appreciated more about them and less about Samuel. --> 2 stars.

OTHER THOUGHTS:

I wish we could have seen more of a character development with Elio from the first book to this one. In the first one, he's seventeen, and in this one, he's around thirty-two, I believe, and yet I felt no change. If we didn't know that it's the future, I would have assumed he was still the naive, innocent, seventeen-year-old boy. I would have liked to have seen some clear maturing in him or at least something to differentiate him from his past teenage self. I sincerely hope that in the future, I am wiser and better than the person that I am now..

I hated the relationships in this book. There, I said it. SOMEHOW everyone is falling in love with each other just by looking once. Someone tell me how that works because it would be such a handy tip for the future. Like, seriously, suddenly Samuel's in love with Miranda after one conversation with her on a train about literally nothing. I was so disappointed because these relationships felt so fake. Even Elio and Oliver. I'm sorry but there was none of the chemistry and blossoming romance that we got from the first book. This is probably due to the lack of actual writing about them at all.

A lot of the men seem to objectify women or men throughout this book. Samuel sees Miranda once and starts fantasizing rather creepily about her. I was very worried for some of these peoples' mindsets.

ALSO I almost forgot. WHAT HAPPENED WITH LEON? Someone please explain to me why this was important and why it happened to be included in the book for a solid 4823482034 pages. A musical mystery that was solved but for what? Who actually cares about Michel's father??

And what happened to Oliver's wife and kids? Were they not heartbroken when he left them to go see Elio? Were they not confused or sad or angry or ANYTHING?

I honestly wish I hadn't ruined it for myself by reading this book because now I know that we never fully got the closure that Elio and Oliver deserved. I would rather have just imagined what had happened to them after the first book instead.

I read this book because I heard the movie is coming out sometime in the future. If you didn't know, I've been in love with Timothee Chalamet for YEARS (everyone is suddenly in love with him now and my 2017-self is saying "I told you so" to everyone). I want to see how this movie will play out. I've heard it's not really going to be sticking to the book and I truly thank god for that.

I would recommend this book to readers who are looking for a story about love, lost love, past romances, and finding love again. WARNING: if you are looking for a beautiful second Elio-Oliver story, you're in the wrong place, folks. I don't know what to tell ya. Maybe try fanfiction hahaha.

Main Character: Elio, Oliver, Samuel
Sidekick(s): Miranda, Michel, etc
Villain(s): Past love, etc
Realistic Fiction Elements: This book could all happen in real life.

carysrhi's review against another edition

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2.0

This book took months to read simply because of how drawn out the first segment is. The meeting of Elio’s father and Miranda on the train is either focused on their age gap or intense conversation between the two within just twelve hours of meeting, the topics of which are frankly unrealistically intellectual and lean far more into Aciman’s poetic writing than a genuine connection between strangers. Elio’s relationship with Michel ultimately comes to an unexplored end despite hinting at Michel’s past regarding his father and German occupation, topics which seem to be allowed just slightly too little space to fully exist. The last section, which many readers will have been waiting the entire book for brings us to Oliver’s America which until now has seemed to be a far off remnant of the past. Oliver spends his time at a party thinking about who he would like to sleep with, not only informing us that he no longer cares for his marriage but also perpetuating some harmful stereotypes surrounding bisexual men. The reader then, after reading through the entire book and all it’s issues, is rewarded with eleven pages in total of Oliver and Elio together. The novel’s prose itself is written to Aciman’s usual high standard, filled with sophisticated references to the arts and philosophical musings that we often are yet to realise live within us until the moment we have read them. However, the narrative and general plot is lacking compared to the prior novel in the sense that it lacks direction and mostly serves as a commentary on age gaps where the eldest of each couple is described as being “twice the age” of the youngest. This book feels like a collection of musings written with the sole aim of being quoted alongside images of a summer in the riviera which are held together by flimsy narrative.

tomboddy's review against another edition

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1.0

This was so horribly bad that I couldn’t finish it. So clearly the writing of an old man fulfilling his fantasy of sleeping with a woman young enough to be his daughter that I didn’t even care what became of the characters I loved from CMBYN.

lindaheesakkers's review against another edition

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3.0

Buiten de heerlijke schrijfstijl om en een aantal prachtige scènes voegde dit helaas weinig toe aan het oorspronkelijke verhaal.

arualbaker's review against another edition

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emotional reflective sad slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

3.5

bethcoop's review against another edition

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2.0

i do not accept this as cmbyn canon

alexkbloom's review against another edition

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2.5 Stars

dgvand's review against another edition

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4.0

At first thought, this is not the sequel I expected after CMBYN. But after further processing it is a story with just as many emotional undertones as CMBYN. I missed Elio and Oliver so much that when I started this my heart raced and I was ready to rejoin their lives. But this is a story taking place both between and beyond the events of CMBYN. I had to leave behind the expectations I had from CMBYN and accept that this book wasn’t going to give me the continuation of the story how I wanted it. Instead, it would deliver a much more real and lifelike story. This is not a sequel, as in a continuation of the story from CMBYN, but a continuation of the lives and a chance to revisit the same characters later in their lives.

**Spoilers**

The first part of this book was the story of Elio’s dad. I never connected with his character as much as I did the characters of Elio and Oliver. It was an interesting interlude but I couldn’t help but feel like I just wanted to skip to Elio and Oliver. The ever shortening parts after this first section really hurt too. I wanted more of Elio and Oliver, not less.

The story of Elio and Michel was interesting as well. It shows us a grown up Elio and what he’s found through growing up and what’s still missing. It shows a relationship, still in the shadows of Oliver’s love. The new love isn’t lessened from it but both affected and driven by it. Elio cannot ever fully leave behind the pull Oliver has over him because he wouldn’t be who he is without having had Oliver and the subsequent loss. It’s an omnipresent force that always affects Elio.

Then Oliver rejoins the story. He’s changed as well. More unsure and less arrogant, but he’s still the same too. At first we see how he lives with the changes left from Elio many years prior. We see how Elio changed his life and then how Oliver changed post-Elio. We see how Oliver’s wife realizes this and finally sets Oliver free to be who he really is.

Then finally, the shortest part of the book by far is back to Elio. He and Oliver finally reunited again. First they have to address the 20 years of distance between them. But this dissolves away when they realize they were really only living on the one day a year they remembered each other, their vigils. This part is what I yearned for but is so short and fleeting that it left me wanting more and feeling like the void left since CMBYN hadn’t been filled.

Overall, this novel is a chance to revisit the lives of some of my favorite fictional literary characters. A chance to see how they’d changed and been changed by the events of CMBYN. It’s not a simple sequel. It’s about self reflection and taking stock of your life and to make sure you’re living your true life and about being happy. I had to slowly process the book to really appreciate and grasp it. But the short lived reconnection of Elio and Oliver left me wanting more.