The story follows Lenny Walker, a 17 year-old clarinetist who struggles with her sister sudden death. Having been left by their mother at such a young age, Lenny and her sister Bailey grew extremely close, and her death hit her hard. She begins writing and scattering poems all over the place in order to cope with the loss.
I had a high expectation for this book. A heartbreaking story with poems and beautiful lines? That sounds like the thing I’d love, I thought. I imagined it would be like reading a slightly different version of John Green. How wrong was I.
Instead of feeling sympathetic for Lenny, I felt downward annoyed and frustrated with her. I’m sorry, but going from one guy to another is just screwed up, and throughout the entire book I felt the need to slap her silly. For one thing, she seems to be struggling to keep the memories of her sister alive, which I COMPLETELY understood. But the thing that irked me was how she seems to deliberately refuse to be okay. She dramatically chooses to be grieving, instead of trying to let go and go on with her life. She makes no effort to be happy, and it was at this point all sympathy went out of the window.
And the poems? I admit some of them are beautiful, but most come across to me as pretentious, just as Lenny herself. Another irksome thing: the use of made-up slangs (case in point: WTF-asaurus). Lenny is just plain irritating, and so is the book. It’s like reading two styles of writing alternately: one where she’s trying to be poetic, and the other which just looks like the rambling of a spoiled 13 year-old girl. And FYI, it only takes 31 pages before this sentence appears: ‘But then all of a sudden, I feel a hardness against my hip, him, that. Holy freaking shit!’
I’ll leave it for you to judge.