I received an advanced copy of Every Last Word in a giveaway. This does not affect my opinion on the actual literature. Thanks, Tamara!
“If you could read my mind, you wouldn’t be smiling.”
Rating: 4/5 stars.
Samantha McCallister 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 Obssesional 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 San 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 discuss a whole new side of herself. Slowly, she begins to feel more “normal” than she ever has as a part of the popular crowd…until she finds a new reason to question her sanity and everything she holds dear
I am so excited for the release of Every Last Word. You all need to pick up a copy of this; whether it be in a library, or you buy it. It’s something that we all need a little bit more of.
This is a book about mental illness; so you would expect it to be solemn. Maybe informational. Characters with dark humor and light wit.
But, even amongst the darker moments, I loved how Sam always said something witty despite her situation.
It transitioned a solemn moment to a heartwarming one.
In this story, as Sam explores Poet’s Corner and makes new friends. She sees all the fun she could have if she would just be herself. In the novel, there are multiple times when she asks herself questions about her identity. Especially, when she meets Caroline—she has to make the decision of being popular with friends who don’t truly care about her but are competing with her; or be herself with people who do care about her despite her illness.
Seeing Sam go through the process of making this crucial decision connects to the reader. Conform to wearing clothes you don’t like, music you don’t like, and people who you can’t stand or being yourself. This isn’t an easy decision for many to make, and seeing Sam’s experience could be inspiring to one who goes through a similar struggle.
Although I cannot officially quote anything without comparing it to the final version; there were multiple scenes that provided multiple inspiring quotes that shape this story and shape the reader.
Oreo-licious Parts of ARC
Disclaimer: None of the briefly mentioned events are spoilers to the conclusion of the plot.
-when Sam transitions from Summer Sam to Samantha to Sam over the course of the plot
– when Sam stands up to her friends
– when Sam questions identity
-the poems from Poet’s Corner (this spoke to me the most because these poems were powerful, funny and made me fall in love with the characters)
The only thing that bothered me is that one or two of mentioned significant poems weren’t included in the plot. They were kind of turning points, and I felt a bit annoyed that they weren’t included.
Every Last Word is not a typical contemporary. It’s filled with art and emotion that’ll make you pay attention to differences, and celebrate them. It will leave an impression on the mind for years to come.
About The Blogger
Wesaun is a teen book lion. She’s also an art enthusiast: poetry, theater, and fan art, as well as paintings/drawings. She loves to be overenthusiastic over books and authors.
You can find her at her Twitter: @epicbooklover.
You can also try her business
What’s your favorite word, poem or book?