This book made me feel a lot of things, not all of them good. I ended up writing notes on this to try and untangle all my thoughts about it, which I usually don’t do unless I’m reading a book specifically for review. It’s not really a bad book and it’s not a good book either (hence the rating), but it is a relatable book for many, I’m sure.
Feast upon my notes, if you so desire.
– This is one for the misunderstood Tumblr generation. It is filled to the brim with quirkiness and oddness (that I find neither quirky nor odd because I understand and am one of those people, albeit with an inactive Tumblr).
– It’s relatable and real for a lot of people, which is obviously great, but I found the writing incredibly awkward and clunky. The author’s use of ‘literally’ and ‘like’ in what felt like every other sentence was so cringe worthy to me. Personally, I found the writing pretty terrible throughout – the sentences just didn’t read right and the writing style didn’t work for me on any level.
– I think the story seemed less relatable to me because I’ve always been comfortable in my own skin and with my weirdness/otherness/quirkiness – it’s all a part of me and something I never have and never will hide. I’m lucky in that I never struggled with knowing who I was or what I liked, or had people around me that I felt I couldn’t be myself around. It will definitely speak to a lot of people, though, and I’m glad it will reach so many in such a positive way.
– There’s a lot of racial and sexual diversity, so ten points to Hufflepuff!
– The plot and characters did grow on me, but very slowly (250 pages in kind of slow). I found myself quite invested in them by the end, and I really loved the ending. All the feels. Glorious. Even if it was predictable.
– Frances did my head in. Parts of her character I really liked – her friendships with Aled and Raine were adorable – but she was so naive and sometimes delusional*. She was also a drama queen; I hate when characters believe they are responsible for something terrible happening in someone else’s life when they clearly aren’t.
– I liked the openness to options after school is done. There’s a lot of exploration and questions about whether A-Levels and university are the only options, and the realisation that you don’t have to do what other people expect of you.
– This is probably a perfect book for most teenagers to read.
Read: March 6th-8th 2016
*spoilers from Goodreads removed