I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Every Last Word by Tamara Ireland Stone
Published by Disney-Hyperion on June 16, 2015
Genres: Teens, Young Adult
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If you could read my mind, you wouldn't be smiling.
Samantha McAllister looks just like the rest of the popular girls in her junior class. But hidden beneath the straightened hair and expertly applied makeup is a secret that her friends would never understand: Sam has Purely-Obsessional OCD and is consumed by a stream of dark thoughts and worries that she can't turn off.
Second-guessing every move, thought, and word makes daily life a struggle, and it doesn't help that her lifelong friends will turn toxic at the first sign of a wrong outfit, wrong lunch, or wrong crush. Yet Sam knows she'd be truly crazy to leave the protection of the most popular girls in school. So when Sam meets Caroline, she has to keep her new friend with a refreshing sense of humor and no style a secret, right up there with Sam's weekly visits to her psychiatrist.
Caroline introduces Sam to Poet's Corner, a hidden room and a tight-knit group of misfits who have been ignored by the school at large. Sam is drawn to them immediately, especially a guitar-playing guy with a talent for verse, and starts to discover a whole new side of herself. Slowly, she begins to feel more "normal" than she ever has as part of the popular crowd . . . until she finds a new reason to question her sanity and all she holds dear.
This book is wonderful.
Every Last Word tackled down the topic of OCD, which is new and unique. The plot itself doesn’t have a lot of holes. And the story is quite heart-warming. I was not shocked by the plot twist in the end, but it sure did make a big impact. The romance was one that didn’t run deep right from the start, but the growth can be seen as the story progresses, especially after the plot twist. This book is not what I can call a cliché but it was like reading a book you have heard before but at the same time, it’s not. Nothing shocked me, but it was not that boring. The plot went on a good pace. It did not feel hurried or anything that’s not right.
The characters were all quirky and lovable. I can’t tell you that I had a deep connection with them throughout the whole story. It was, for me, because they didn’t all get the chance to be exposed that much to me. I don’t know, I can’t explain it good but sometimes, at a few parts in the book, the characters felt like just names. I had to go back a few pages and skim just to remind myself who were they. I would like for them to speak a little bit more but you know, it might be just me, not the book. I did love the friendship factor a lot. I love her relationship with Sue and her family. I love everyone. Period.
The writing, on the other hand, is beautiful. Downright beautiful. I love the poems; I love the uniqueness of the plot. And to anyone that’s reading, the author’s note is really important. Even though this story left me in a crying and somewhat in a dark state, I can say that I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I love it.
Overall, if you love poems, stories about friendships, expect-the-unexpected kind of plot twist, and drama, you’ll love this book. It’s the kind that, I hope, would raise some kind of awareness out there. I love books that tell a story of a character with some kind of mental illness like this not only for the sake of “uniqueness.” It’s true, it’s happening, and we need to know and always be aware that some people have a hard time dealing with things we that we can easily deal with. It’s part of life – their lives and ours.
Reviewed by: Reneth