I expected Seven Days in June to be a light and cute romance read, based on the online reviews and the charming title. I was completely wrong — this story is thought-provoking and deals with serious issues. It addresses topics including self-harm, alcoholism, parental abuse, drug abuse, overdosing and other major issues. The portrayal of invisible disabilities, generational trauma and the significance of adult figures made me a huge fan of this book.
Seven Days in June revolves around two characters, Eva and Shane, who are both adult authors using each other as muses. They met in high school and spent seven days together before an incident occurred that would separate them for the next 15 years. During their week together, they revealed their extreme coping mechanisms, which included cutting and alcohol abuse. The timeline of this story is not linear and deals with flashbacks. It is interesting to see the juxtaposition between their relationship as adults and unstable teenagers. The mother-daughter relationship was lovely, and seeing how Eva tried to shield her daughter from generational trauma while also honoring her ancestors was a flawlessly executed delicate balance.
Reading this book felt intimate, and I experienced a range of emotions, including despair, happiness, longing and admiration. It was fascinating to read about how far the two had progressed from lost teenagers to successful adults. Learning about their first week together after so long gave me a much better sense of how they had matured as adults and had grown since that week 15 years ago. The reason for their separation surprised me, and I was shocked to learn what had actually happened. They managed to leave a lasting impression on each other in such a short period of time, and seeing their reconciliation was satisfying. The book ended well, and I admired that the couple finally got something nice after all of their pain and trauma. With Black History Month in full swing, this book should definitely be on your list. Its celebration of Black identity without watering down history is refreshing to see in literature. Diversifying your bookshelf is vital and this is just one way to do it. Black voices are critical in the fight to expose America’s racial inequality infrastructure. During this month, I encourage you to diversify your reading list!