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Beautiful

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3.7 of 5 stars 3.70  ·  rating details  ·  3,574 ratings  ·  437 reviews
When thirteen-year-old Cassie moves to a suburb of Seattle, she is determined to leave her boring, good-girl existence behind. She chooses some dangerous new friends and is quickly caught up in their fast-paced world of drugs, sex, secrets, and cruelty.
Cassie's new existence both thrills and terrifies her. She embraces the numbness she feels from the drugs, starts sleepin
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Kindle Edition, 256 pages
Published October 6th 2009 by Simon Pulse (first published September 23rd 2009)
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Calcalsellars yeah when I was reading it I thought it was a little odd she was only in seventh grade - I don't know anyone who did drugs/had intimate relations with…moreyeah when I was reading it I thought it was a little odd she was only in seventh grade - I don't know anyone who did drugs/had intimate relations with ninth grade boys (or anyone) that young. I actually am in ninth grade and the people at my school in my grade don't do those things either though, so it would still be weird for me to imagine her as a freshman.(less)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Daisy
Take a deep breath and steel yourself for Amy Reed’s debut novel “Beautiful.” It’s beautiful for sure, but it’s not easy, nor is it supposed to be. Consider the verbs Reed uses: punched, scraped, gutted, crush, explode, smash, destroy, cutting, burning, scarring. But really, what better words are there to describe thirteen-year-old Cassie’s harrowing descent into the world of drugs, alcohol, abuse and the sex she wishes she weren’t having?

“Beautiful” is a gut check of a young adult novel. It’s t
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Katya
What? Are you guys kidding me? Was I reading a different book from everyone else? Because I can't imagine what could possibly earn this piece of trash a four- or five-star review.

I mean, I thought people were done writing things like this. It's so formulaic that it's laughable. An absentee father, a depressed alcoholic mother, a shy, ugly teenager who somehow gets reborn into a beautiful swan (although we never do learn how Cassie got that new face and body everyone keeps talking about) and sets
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Courtney
It's hard to know exactly how to describe Beautiful in a way that will do it justice. Alice down the rabbit hole. Amazing.

First things first: what Daisy said here. I especially agree with her when she says Beautiful reads like a memoir. It does and that makes it almost unnerving at times. It's almost like a memoir you don't have permission to read, if that makes sense--that's how personal it is.

Amy Reed has tapped into a voice that will haunt you. You will ache for Cassie, you will want to hel
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Emily Ellsworth
This book was so awful that I'm thinking about changing my Twilight reviews to be one star higher.

Has their ever been a protagonist as unlikeable as Cassie? The whole novel is unbelievable. Cassie is a nice, sweet girl, that moves to a new school and has the chance to be popular. In a matter of days she is doing drugs, has casual sex, and drinks. At 13. Not likely.

Also, I realize that her parents are pretty uninvolved in her, but really? If she smoked pot as much as she said she did, there is no
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Robert Kent
All right, so just to be clear: Beautiful by Amy Reed is not appropriate for all age groups. Come to think of it, the life of the modern American teenager is not appropriate for all age groups. Both it and this book contain lots of sex, including some incest, drug abuse, alcohol, suicide, violence, all manner of foul language, and many other adult elements I usually don’t get to write about here. I’m not too worried as I know most of you Esteemed Readers are adults, but if you are under the age ...more
Loryn
Dec 10, 2009 Loryn rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Young Adults
Recommended to Loryn by: Heather Johnson
Shelves: young-adult-ya
Before moving to a small town outside of Seattle, Cassie had always been what most people would call a good kid. She had lived on an island called Bainbridge Island and she was invisible, living but not fully. She had fake friends, and did well in school because it was what was expected of her.

For the first week or so at her new school as a seventh grader, it seemed like things were going to be exactly the same as when she went to school in Bainbridge. That all changed though when Alex, the gir
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Nic
This is one of the books that left me thinking about it later. I felt Cassie was a real teenager making real choices and how bad choices can lead your life in a downward spiral as can try to fit in.

I loved this book.




Jessica
My mother was a librarian, and sometime in the summer of 1973, she handed me a novel that upset, intrigued, and convinced me so fully, I almost refused to go to middle school. She didn’t really give the novel to me. She shoved it into my hands, insisting that I read it. That book was the novel Go Ask Alice, purportedly based on a teenager’s diary. The story is, as we all know now, a vivid cautionary tale about drugs and their rabbit hole allure.
But really, the most frightening aspect of that no
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Hannah
To everyone who says this isn't realistic--I wish you were right. I really do.
Sue
I bought Beautiful on a whim...and ended up being floored. I've never read anything like this before. It is probably the most emotionally-charged book that I have ever read. Reed paints a very vivid picture and creates such a realistic plot. I've often wondered how does someone get to be like "that"? Reed has come along and given us a gut-wrenching story that illustrates the "how". Once I started reading I could not put it down...I finished it all in one sitting. I believe that Reed does an incr ...more
Stephanie Varno
Cassie is a thirteen year old girl who has just moved to a new town in Washington. With starting school, she is determined to leave her old life behind and become a completely new person. She meets new people (high schoolers) and is even nicknamed “Cassie the Beautiful Seventh Grader.” She starts hanging out with these high schoolers and makes some very poor choices. She starts doing acid, smoking weed and cigarettes, drinking alcohol, all on a daily basis. She becomes addicted to a perscription ...more
Sarah BT
Rating: 2.75

Beautiful is an interesting little book. It's very gritty and perfect for fans of Ellen Hopkins. I can see readers who love gritty realistic fiction devouring this one. But adults will see the many faults that are in the book. It's also a bit odd because the character is so young, but I don't know how many middle school libraries could really carry it and I don't know if older teens would read about the addictions of a 7th grader. So I don't know who the audience really is. I guess 7
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Josie Weathers
DO NOT BE FOOLED!! I warn you.

This book will draw you in with it's interesting and self destructive characters, it's quick paced writing style, and very messed up narrator, but i will say flat out that the ending is NO WHERE NEAR, NOT IN THIS LIFE TIME, WORTH IT.

I mean Reed just basically makes you read this story about a girl who messes up her life, but she never fixes it. She never wraps anything up, and the stuff she tries to wrap up... oh, she fails at that.

Also, this story is about a thirt
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A Beautiful Madness
Am I the only one who thought this book was similar to the movie Thirteen, with Nikki Reed and Evan Rachel Woods? There was something in it that really reminded me of this movie. After all, Cassie goes from being a good girl, to being a ‘bad” girl, caught in a world of lies, drug, sex, alcohol and abuse.

This is not a light read, that’s for sure. There is something really troubling in reading about a thirteen-years-old going through all Cassie is going through.

The fact that Cassie is only thirt
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LibraryFairy™
I first bought the book because of the wonderful cover but it wasn't my cup of tea. First of Cassie's character had so much potential but it wasn't explored. Most of the story flew right past me and if your a bit slow like I am you wouldn't understand the author's cryptic words. We never knew what was up with Cassie's dad. Alex wasn't well described altough she was one of the books main characters.The only interesting part of the book was Sarah. Altogether it seemed like a failed attempt at copy ...more
Stefanie
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Terry
This is a disturbing story, but one that is all too well known. Girl moves to a new school, parents aren't so functional, girl makes astoundingly bad choices. Through a combination of flawed parents, youthful recklessness, and sociopathic best-friends, Cassie sinks into...exactly the sort of things you expect, none of them pretty, let alone beautiful.

Reed recounts the story with easy-to-read language, in straightforward, first-person narration. Cassie is numb, so there isn't much emotion to the
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Adriana
4.5 stars. This is a very powerful read that I wouldn't recommend to younger teens. There is a lot of very graphic language, sex, abuse, and drugs. Cassie is a 13-year old who is starting at a new school. She has no siblings, her mom drinks a lot and generally does nothing, and her dad is very absent. She decides that since she has now blossomed into a beautiful young girl the cool kids will of course accept her. The problem is that the "cool" kids at her new school are also the kids who sleep a ...more
Steph Su
There is something disturbingly haunting about BEAUTIFUL. Debut novelist Amy Reed writes Cassie’s dark story in a prose that stuns and lingers.

BEAUTIFUL is similar to edgy movies like Catherine Hardwicke’s Thirteen in terms of content, but it is nearly poetic in its descriptions. Reed’s writing allows Cassie to distance herself from all situations she doesn’t want to be in, while simultaneously letting readers into Cassie’s mindset. The result both characterizes Cassie and effectively draws us i
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Merary
This is one of those books that at first don't grab you from the beginning, but once they do, they pull you so hard it makes you shake!

This was the case for Amy Reed's debut, Beautiful.

Cassie is a thirteen year old girl who gets involved in a group of kids who take drugs and party too much. She sheds her virginity, embraces the numbness she feels from the drugs, and floats through it all, knowing that she is now called beautiful. She ignores the dangers of her fast-paced life . . . but she can’t
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Audrey (holes In My brain)
I really didn't like it at first, but it got a little bit better. I'm not seeing much of the genius of the book that others are, and I never really liked Cassie. Sure, you can be realistic and make realistic dumb decisions, but I just hated her stupidity so much which made it hard to even stand her as a character. and she's 13 which made the whole story feel wildly unrealistic in my mind.
2.5/5
712Olivia
I really didnt think I would like this book. It is a great book, you cling onto every sentence and dont want to put it down. i think the lesson of this book is popularity isn't everything. You can be happy if your not popular. Also doing bad things can really hurt yourself not just physically but mentally also it can hurt the people around you.
Heather
I don't always need a happily-ever-after at an end of every book. I also don't live in some fairytale bubble, where I only read fluffy-sappy-love-stories. With that being said, I'm really conflicted about this book. On the one hand, I didn't really care for this story at all. Part of me thinks, I may have missed some over arching context, like it went over my head or something... Then, there is the other side of my brain that is shouting that this book was tragically brilliant.

I think that anyon
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Val
Although the book is classified as Young Adult fiction, anyone who has ever been a young adult can enjoy it. The toxic friendship between Cassie and Alex is something most girls have known all too well at some point in their lives and seeing it here on the page is both riveting and therapeutic. The author is just as adept at describing the more fulfilling, life-changing best friendship between Cassie and Sarah, that instant connection that feels almost like falling in love. Reed does such a wond ...more
Caroline Saltzman
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Robyn
I'm really, really not sure what to say about Beautiful. I loved the plot idea, and I love how it's real, and how things like this actually happen in real life. But at the same time I thought that it was a bit over the top. I felt like the author was trying to make every possible horrible thing happen R Cassie, an d that it got to be a little bit unrealistic. Especially Cassie's transition from good girl to bad girl. It seemed a little rushed. And you can't possibly tell me that there's girls th ...more
Brenda Carpio
Es imposible para mi no amar la tragedia, y no es el morbo lo que me atrae y me hace presa fácil, no, es lo duro que puede ser la vida... es que muestra que nadie está a salvo de esos portazos en el rostro, que todo puede ir hacia ningún lugar, pero siempre hay un escape, un Salvador que si querer ser parte de la historia está ahí y te hace ver que hay una salida.

Este libro es... todo lo oscuro que puedas encontrar para definirlo. La forma de vivir y pensar de una chica que no siente, que sólo b
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Rebecca  Payton
I absolutely loved this book! It's about a girl named Cassie who just moved to a new town. She doesn't have a great home life, her parents barely talk and when they do you can tell their is tension in the room. Cassie is a very smart eighth grader. In her old school, she used to be considered as one of the popular girls. Ever since she moved to this new town, Cassie has been trying to fit in and eventually does; except this is a crowd she should've never started talking to. She starts hanging ou ...more
Jess
Meh.
Honestly I don't get what all the hype was about. I read so many reviews of this book saying 'best book eva!!!!!! x0x' maybe if you are a thirteen year old you might enjoy this book but to me it was just another novel. Like so many other books the main character starts hanging out and being influenced by the 'wrong crowd' she tries drugs for the first time, loses her virginity, starts drinking, and does many other illegal things thirteen year olds shouldn't be doing. But then she makes a fri
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Eliana
Something about this book just didn't hit me as realistic.

I know that was sort of the point of the book--that it was supposed to be a shock that the sort of situation described in the book can happen in real life, but it just didn't seem like it was possible that this specific situation could happen in real life, unlike other books I've read that deal with the subjects of drug abuse, rape, etc, which portrayed these topics more realistically. (Specifically any book by Ellen Hopkins.)

Also, the wr
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who thinks alex is a emotional abuser? 3 16 Sep 26, 2014 03:35PM  
Cassie Bernall 3 20 Jun 03, 2013 01:27PM  
Edgy YA: Beautiful 2 20 Apr 16, 2012 11:29AM  
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Amy Reed was born and raised in and around Seattle, where she attended a total of eight schools by the time she was eighteen. Constant moving taught her to be restless and being an only child made her imagination do funny things. After a brief stint at Reed College (no relation), she moved to San Francisco and spent the next several years serving coffee and getting into trouble. She eventually gra ...more
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“Maybe this is all love is and all it will ever be-- boys fucking girls and pretending it's love, girls getting fucked and pretending they like it, saying "I love you, too," and wanting to throw up.” 56 likes
“And that's when it hits me, the punch in the stomach, the carving out of my insides. That's when I realize that none of this is a movie. I will not go out with a bang. There is no ending. There are no credits. I will wake up and I will keep waking up and this will always be waiting for me.” 49 likes
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