The Beginning of Everything
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The Beginning of Everything

3.83 of 5 stars 3.83  ·  rating details  ·  14,528 ratings  ·  1,847 reviews
Golden boy Ezra Faulkner believes everyone has a tragedy waiting for them—a single encounter after which everything that really matters will happen. His particular tragedy waited until he was primed to lose it all: in one spectacular night, a reckless driver shatters Ezra’s knee, his athletic career, and his social life.

No longer a front-runner for Homecoming King, Ezra fi...more
Hardcover, 335 pages
Published August 27th 2013 by Katherine Tegen (first published January 1st 2013)
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Jun Hanvey OK, so I kind of hated the first %60 percent or so, but it does have an interesting ending, and it's definitely worth reading if you want a book that…moreOK, so I kind of hated the first %60 percent or so, but it does have an interesting ending, and it's definitely worth reading if you want a book that has a very uncommon ending for a contemporary YA. I completely feel you on not liking Ezra or the Cassidy in the beginning, though. (less)
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2013 Contemporary YA
23rd out of 236 books — 1,415 voters
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YA Books - Publishing August 2013
10th out of 68 books — 185 voters

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Rating: 1.5 Stars

I almost feel like laughing, but not quite. The Beginning of Everything is majorly over-hyped, but I suspect that's because of the nature of YA. We've come to expect a very standard, happily-ever-after-esque, unrealistic portrayal of life from YA. We assume the end of the book is the end of these characters lives and don't bother to think about them breaking up with their "true love" in three months or rushing off to college and possibly creating another screwed up parental rela...more
Emily May
Feb 13, 2013 Emily May marked it as dnf
No rating because I didn't make it very far with this. No real review either but I'm going to share a few thoughts on my initial impressions, mostly because I want you to tell me if I'm wrong. I just got the feeling almost straight away that this wouldn't be my type of book. The first chapter starts very well, great male narrator's voice and a rather shocking opening with Toby. Then the next few chapters reminded me of a Taylor Swift music video. And I don't mean that in a general way, I mean it...more
I was waiting in line and happened to have this book with me, and after only 10 minutes I was already hooked. The first few pages recount a horrifying situation that is bound to shock anyone, and already I could put myself in their shoes and feel it changing these boys for life. Then shortly after, we're brought into the second shock of the book: the accident that changed Ezra's life.

The Beginning of Everything is narrated by Ezra, a one-time golden boy who's now feeling out of place with his ca...more
I think it’s possible for someone who didn’t really look at this book too critically to be tricked into wholeheartedly liking it. Otherwise, I can’t imagine someone actually thinking this is a good novel.
I read a review where the writer said this is the perfect book for the average tumblr user, and that is just so completely accurate (this also makes sense when you consider the fact that in the author's biography it describes her as an “internet personality”…).
This story caters to “nerds” by wri...more
Jaime Arkin
Sometimes I think that everyone has a tragedy waiting for them, that the people buying milk in their pajamas or picking their noses at stoplights could be only moments away from disaster. That everyone's life, no matter how unremarkable, has a moment when it will become extraordinary-a single encounter after which everything that really matters will happen.

Ezra Faulkner thought he had everything. He was the Golden Boy of Eastwood High. Star tennis player hanging with the popular crowd and dating...more
Sometimes when you finish a book you have to let your thoughts percolate a little. You have to let the jingle jangle mess of thoughts filter through your brain until you have words you can distill on the way out through your fingers. I've thought about this book a lot since I finished. I've filtered my feelings so much that if they were liquid they would be transparent. And the one that stand out from the rest is rankled and I can’t seem to shake it off. That’s not to say this isn't a good book,...more
I guess I’m a sucker for happy endings. I like it when life works out in a neat little package wrapped in red ribbon and blue paper, and I find the warm, gooey center filled with sugar and jam. But sometimes life kicks you in the ass, staples your forehead to the living room carpet, and then swipes your lunch money.

While it would have been easy to call this novel cheesy, and then add a bit of sap and honey for good measure, I don’t feel as though that truly sums up THE BEGINNING OF EVERYTHING. O...more
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
Robyn Schneider's novel underwent a title change from Severed Heads, Broken Hearts to The Beginning of Everything. Both titles I think are fitting for the story within, though I must say I feel a certain affection for the original, which conveys both the humor and the darkness of Schneider's witty, brilliant debut.

Ezra Faulkner theorizes that no one's life really begins until they go through a personal tragedy. This may seem an odd sort of belief, but it makes sense. Tragedy has a way of puttin...more
See more reviews at YA Midnight Reads

Thank you Simon and Schuster Australia for sending me this copy. No compensation was given or taken to alter this review.

“You have this maddening little smile sometimes, like you've just thought of something incredibly witty but are afraid to say it in case no one gets the joke.”

Severed Heads, Broken Hearts (or The Beginning of Everything) was one of my most highly anticipated novels of 2013. So when going into this, I had high expectations. And for what see...more
Oct 27, 2012 Roan marked it as to-read
Shelves: 2013-books
OCT. 27, 2012 and there it is..... the cover.

Very nice. pretty cool.

I was really hoping to give this book five stars... but I just couldn't. The beginning of the book was amazing. Full of humor and high school problems everyone faces. Then in the middle of the book went the other direction and wasn't that exciting anymore (but I it had hope in this book... until the end). The end of the book broke my heart. I was hoping it would leave me breathless or happy at least. Instead it sort of left me hanging with a hole in my heart. I was really hoping that Ezra(awesom...more
Kelly (and the Book Boar)
Find all of my reviews at:

Ezra Faulkner had everything going for him – prom king, tennis star, hot girlfriend, etc., etc., but a tragic accident has left him broken – both physically and mentally. Without his status as a top athlete, how will he fit in with his old friends Senior year? Does he even want to? When new girl Cassidy enrolls at his high school and an old elementary school pal pops back into his life, Ezra begins to realize maybe he wasn’t the person...more
The Beginning of Everything has practically all the ingredients necessary for at most an instant favorite, or at least an exceptionally memorable read: it has absolutely spectacular writing, an ensemble of witty and dynamic characters, all along with an incredibly well written male point-of-view.

Ezra is a thoroughly relatable, interesting, and likable character from the beginning of The Beginning of Everything right to the end. I've not read too many young adult novels written by a woman, or ev...more
Jeann (Happy Indulgence)
This review also appears on Happy Indulgence. Check it out for more reviews!

It starts with a severed head and ends with a broken heart. I'm not sure why they renamed the book to The Beginning of Everything, because the previous title captures this charming story perfectly. I just loved the charming, quirky nature of this novel, it was entertaining and hilarious, completely random and it just worked.

Ezra Faulkner was always a bit of a nerd, but he somehow fell into the popular crowd when he hit h...more
Sep 05, 2013 JTony rated it 1 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: no one
I pretty seriously hated this book. Loathed it actually. I really only finished it so that I could write a scathing review because I really hated it that much.

The characters are barely more than cardboard cutouts made from restroom gender icons with pithy words scrawled on them in red sharpie. Not a lot of substance but indicators as to what we're supposed to think of them. I didn't think much of them, I can tell you that. They are shallow, immature, emotionally crippled and selfish with little...more
Jen (The Starry-Eyed Revue)
“I wondered what things became when you no longer needed them, and I wondered what the future would hold once we'd gotten past our personal tragedies and proven them ultimately survivable.”

The Beginning of Everythingis, above all else, about personal tragedies, the frailty of first love, and surviving them both. But it's also a tale of self discovery and self actualization. And I was hooked from the very first page. And if I hadn't been, page four would have done it:
“What the news reports di
"SOMETIMES I THINK that everyone has a tragedy waiting for them, that the people buying milk in their pajamas or picking their noses at stoplights could be only moments away from disaster. That everyone's life, no matter how unremarkable, has a moment when it will become extraordinary--a single encounter after which everything that really matters will happen." -Robyn Schneider, The Beginning of Everything

The Beginning of Everything started with a boy named Ezra Faulkner who initially had a life...more
"Oscar Wilde once said that to live is the rarest thing in the world, because most people just exist, and that's all. I don't know if he's right, but I do know that I spent a long time existing, and now I intend to live." - Ezra Faulkner

Wow. So this book surprised me. I REALLY, really enjoyed Robyn Schneider's writing. She really knows how to create really realistic, witty, amazing characters. I definitely related to most of them and loved all of the Harry Potter and Doctor Who references. If I...more
Bookpanda (Miguel Cruz)
my heart is heavy and it's bringing me down, down to the cold hard ground.

solid 5 stars.

There's a giveaway for this book, and several others, here:

Multiple entries encouraged. Ends 4/25/2014. International. Come join!


Severed Heads, Broken Hearts is an upcoming book by Robyn Schneider, the author responsible for the Knightley Academy books that I enjoyed so much (and want more of). I'm slowly edging my foot into Young Adult contemporary and this book suited my mood well. I really needed something that was a l...more
Erin Arkin
Ezra Faulkner is adjusting to life after an accident takes away his ability to play tennis. For such a long time it has defined who he is and now he doesn't have it going into his senior year of high school. He spent the summer avoiding all of his friends and trying to come to terms with what he will do when he goes back to school.

Cassidy is the new girl and although it is clear she is hiding something, she refuses to talk about it. A number of the kids that Ezra ends up hanging out with know he...more
THE BEGINNING OF EVERYTHING is a winning book that uses a well-trod formula -- boy wins girl, boy loses girl, boy endures heartbreak while he tries to best Freud on the question of what women want. Meaning: There are different tweaks on a familiar romantic plot here, but overall we have a lead protagonist (here named Ezra Faulkner), a popular tennis jock who is injured in a car mishap early on, who begins to reconsider the kids he hangs out with when he falls for "the new kid" (here named Cassid...more
Check out more of my reviews at ***Singing and Reading in the Rain***!

The Beginning of Everything was tender, romantic, and everything I could possibly want in a sumer contemporary book, and everything I didn't. It was difficult to rate this one, because while I loved it, I also couldn't form an emotional bond with it.

Ezra Faulkner, our protagonist, was a broken—literally—character who didn't know what he was going to do with his life after giving up his one true passion: tennis. First and forem...more
This book just felt too much like John Green-lite for me - thoughtful, super intelligent boy meets Manic Pixie Dream Girl, they trade clever quips and philosophical meanderings, and boy learns all kinds of new things about himself, others, the world, blah blah before girl disappears or her dark secret is uncovered. Except John Green does that kind of schtick well - his Manic Pixie Dream Girls always manage to subvert the trope at least a little, and Cassidy, this book's MPDG, never really does....more
Ezra Faulkner: golden boy, prom king, captain of the tennis team... gets mowed down one fateful night, loses his status as most popular guy at school and ability to play tennis after injuring his knee, meets an eccentric new girl, joins the debate team, and starts rediscovering himself again. The previous title of the book "Severed Heads, Broken Hearts" always seemed a much better one, but it truly is the beginning of everything for Ezra.

If you like character-driven YA novels, definitely pick th...more
The Pixie Reader
“There's a word for it," she told me, "in French, for when you have a lingering impression of something having passed by. Sillage. I always think of it when a firework explodes and lights up the smoke from the ones before it."
Well, I'm disappointed. This book tried so hard to be meaningful, but the execution just fell flat. I liked the overall message and the ending, in particular, however I was much too detached from the actual plot and characters throughout almost the entire the book.

Y’all know about the story of someone who has it all. The person who is on top of his game and it took just a single event to take everything he has. And now he’s sort of lost and undergoing some transition…sometimes life altering ones? If your answer is yes, then you have a vaguely idea what Severed Heads, Broken Hearts by Robyn Schneider is all about.

This is about Ezra Faulkner who lost it all after a tragedy that ended his athletic career. He has future in playing tennis but a car accident th...more
Hazel (Stay Bookish)
Originally posted at Stay Bookish

Actual rating: 4.5

The Beginning Of Everything, also known as Severed Heads And Broken Hearts, is an amazing book- a beautifully written prose that will sure take your breath away. With great narration and an excellent voice, it tells a story of personal tragedies and aftermaths.

When I contemplate on why I loved this book so much, all arrows point to Ezra Faulkner. Ezra was your quintessential golden boy- played a sport, had a trophy girlfriend, was admired and lo...more
Jennifer Lim
This started out well. It has a good male narrator, funny dialogues and young people with hip things to do. Not to mention the fact that there are a lot of literary references and quotations. Philosophical ones, too. And of course, the puns.

It was a good story and well written. But there is one little problem.

I've read this before.

It's this former jock who loses his place from the table. He used to date the hot chick. Then the event happens and he loses his former pedestal. There's this girl and...more
Zemira Warner
Mar 06, 2014 Zemira Warner marked it as contemp-to-read  ·  review of another edition
Just pre-ordered this baby. It better be good! The author has the most adorable YT channel, or should I say two. Go and subscribe!
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Robyn Schneider is a writer, actor, and online personality who misspent her youth in a town coincidentally similar to Eastwood. Robyn is a graduate of Columbia University, where she studied creative writing, and the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, where she studied medical ethics. She is also the author of the middle grade Knightley Academy books, written as Violet Haberdasher. She...more
More about Robyn Schneider...
Better Than Yesterday The Social Climber's Guide to High School Untitled Extraordinary Means All You Need Is Love: 3-Book Teen Fiction Collection: The Beginning of Everything, How to Love, Maybe One Day

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“Oscar Wilde once said that to live is the rarest thing in the world, because most people just exist, and that’s all. I don’t know if he’s right, but I do know that I spend a long time existing, and now, I intend to live.” 258 likes
“Life is the tragedy,' she said bitterly. 'You know how they categorize Shakespeare's plays, right? If it ends with a wedding, it's a comedy. And if it ends with a funeral, it's a tragedy. So we're all living tragedies, because we all end the same way, and it isn't with a goddamn wedding.” 191 likes
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