Saturday, August 2, 2014

Book Review: Leftovers

Title Leftovers

Author Laura Wiess

Release Date July 7, 2008

A devastating novel of desperation and revenge from one of today's most compelling new voices in fiction. In this follow-up to her heartbreaking debut, Such a Pretty Girl, Laura Wiess once again spins a shattering tale of the tragedies that befall young women who are considered society's Leftovers.

Blair and Ardith are best friends who have committed an unforgivable act in the name of love and justice. But in order to understand what could drive two young women to such extreme measures, first you'll have to understand why. You'll have to listen as they describe parents who are alternately absent and smothering, classmates who mock and shun anyone different, and young men who are allowed to hurt and dominate without consequence. You will have to learn what it's like to be a teenage girl who locks her bedroom door at night, who has been written off by the adults around her as damaged goods. A girl who has no one to trust except the one person she's forbidden to see. You'll have to understand what it's really like to be forgotten and abandoned in America today.

Are you ready?

This book was certainly not what I was expecting after reading the blurb. Throughout the whole book, I'm expecting some huge event that completely flips the book from just mediocre to absolutely amazing (or at least worth the read). Instead, nothing. The book just ends. Right when we've reached the high point, the big unforgivable act, it just ends. We see no justice. We see no resolution. Highly disappointing.

The weirdest part of the book was the second-person narrative. Surely it's been done well before, but certainly not in this case. I assume the book was told this way in order to make the reader feel closer to the characters and become invested in them. Instead, for me, it did just the opposite. I never developed a connection to any of the characters and I didn't really care what happened to either of them. I kept thinking about how strange the narrative was and it removed me from the story rather than immersed me in it.

After reading some reviews on Goodreads, I guess this is one of those polarizing books. For some, it's this amazing book. For others, like me, it's a letdown.


2 out of 5 stars

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