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Ask Me How I Got Here

3.18  ·  Rating details ·  1,498 ratings  ·  330 reviews
Addie has always known what she was running toward. In cross-country, in life, in love. Until she and her boyfriend—her sensitive, good-guy boyfriend—are careless one night and she ends up pregnant. Addie makes the difficult choice to have an abortion. And after that—even though she knows it was the right decision for her—nothing is the same anymore. She doesn’t want anyon ...more
Kindle Edition, 240 pages
Published May 3rd 2016 by Greenwillow
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Average rating 3.18  · 
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 ·  1,498 ratings  ·  330 reviews

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Jesse (JesseTheReader)
I honestly think had this book been written in prose rather than verse, I might've enjoyed it much more. I just didn't feel the story fit well within that format and I think at times it held the story back. The format didn't allow for character depth, which caused the characters to feel one-dimensional. I also had major issues with the amount of cheating that takes place within this book between the characters. (like can you not????) This story didn't even feel complete when I finished reading i ...more
Sarah Elizabeth
(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to HarperCollins and Edelweiss.)

my parents
Or maybe tomorrow."

This was an enjoyable story about a girl who fell unexpectedly pregnant, and her life as she dealt with the consequences.

I felt quite sorry for Addie, especially when she had to tell her parents that she was pregnant, because it really was a terrible situation to find herself in.

The storyline in this was about
I'll be surprised if this isn't one of the best books of 2016. I'm saying that and we haven't even gotten there yet.

Addie attends a private religious school and she's a cross country runner. It's always been a big part of her life. Until it's not.

After sex with her boyfriend James, she finds herself pregnant. Here's where the story shifts: this isn't a story about the poor girl who got pregnant, had an abortion, and was left alone by him. Nope. She has an abortion and he sticks around. Her pare
Emily May
I generally love novels in verse. They were always one of those things I assumed I wouldn't like, until I eventually gave in and tried one. The short, emotional punches they pack are often very effective. That being said, despite loving Heppermann's Poisoned Apples: Poems for You, My Pretty, I thought this one took on too much.

With verse, you can be purple and metaphorical and dramatic. You only have a small number of words to make your point and you need to use them well. With Ask Me How I Got
Taylor Knight
Jun 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
I didn't know this was written in verse so I was pretty surprised when I started it. I've only read one other book in verse before so I can't really say if this is well written compared to other books written in this style. I did really like this book though. I thought the plot was interesting and different from most other books that I've read. I couldn't get emotionally invested in the story or the characters but I still really enjoyed it.
Christy LoveOfBooks
Dec 20, 2015 rated it it was amazing


I’m not one to seek out books written in verse. Actually, I’ll usually skip them. However, I couldn’t resist Ask Me How I Got Here after reading the description. I absolutely loved it!

Unlike Christine Heppermann, I’m not great with words, so it’s hard to explain something so moving. It’s interesting how someone can write 500 pages that really says nothing at all, while someone else can write a tenth of that and evoke such depth and meaning.

This little book took me through an array of em
Yet more proof I like novels in verse way more than I always think I do. Religion and reproductive rights and sexuality - oh my! All my favorite things.
Zoe Chao
Sep 16, 2018 rated it did not like it
Don't read this. I don't like it. I don't know why I read it. It is terrible. I finished it in 30 minutes. Don't read this.
Emerald Sue
Sep 27, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: poetry-verse
"I'm the daughter
who can't stop making bad choices;
the girlfriend
who won't answer her phone:
the ghost
who is anything
but holy."
Oct 25, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I had high hopes for this book. But it didn't live up to my expectations. Unfortunately..
Add this to your TBR piles NOW.
This review contains profanities which may or may not affect you in some kind of way. Read at your own risk. Lol! ;)

(view spoiler)
Book Riot Community
A couple of years ago, I raved about Heppermann’s YA debut Poisoned Apples, which was a collection of feminist poems paired with feminist art. To say I was excited she had a YA novel in verse coming out would be an understatement, and I was far from disappointed with Ask Me.

Addie attends a private religious school and she’s a cross country runner. It’s always been a big part of her life. Until it’s not.

After sex with her boyfriend James, she finds herself pregnant. Here’s where the story shifts:
Jun 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
A little story about a girl who made an abortion, and with it her life kinda changed. And it was kinda predictable. What was unpredictable tho, is the narration style, which is - verse. More like captures of a tumblr blog, I would say, and I even kinda liked it..kinda. I already saw other people complaining about flat characters, and the author who "bites more that she can chew", so you probably should go and check out their reviews if you're looking for a constructive opinion. As for me..I thin ...more
Nov 12, 2018 rated it liked it
Okay, I'll admit I gave poetry some hate in the past, but I actually enjoyed this book. I think the way this story was written is beautiful and the story its self is very interesting.
i honestly have no idea how i feel about this book but what i do know is that i am very confused
Jessica Woodbury
Mar 14, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: lgbtq, religion, ya, library
If you said to me, "Hey Jess, want to read a YA novel entirely in verse?" I would say Thanks but no thanks. Novels in verse have never really been my jam. I didn't know that was what I was getting into with ASK ME HOW I GOT HERE but it snared me immediately and I devoured it in one rapturous sitting.

Lately in YA I have struggled with the idea of voice, especially with first person teenage narrators. That balance between wanting to give full awareness to your characters but also not having them r
Lauren ✨ (TheBookishTwins)
Disclaimer: I received a free copy via Edelweiss for review purposes.


Ever since I read One by Sarah Crossan, I've been looking for another free verse book to read. When Ask Me How I Got Here popped up on Edelweiss it immediately caught my interest, especially as I had heard some good stuff about Heppermann's Poisoned Apples: Poems for You, My Pretty.

After a careless night with her boyfriend, cross-country runner Addie ends up pregnant. She makes the decision to have an abortion, and as a stu
I am intrigued, and I also have so! many! questions!

I love the understated nature of this book: Addie goes through a major event—an abortion following an unplanned pregnancy—and although this could very clearly cause Drama on about twelve different levels (starting with the fact that she goes to Catholic school), it doesn't. That is: it does affect her, but it does not define her. Addie is able, through the book, to work things out largely on her own terms; this isn't the sort of book where she
Abby Johnson
Dec 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: teen, verse, contemporary

In beautiful and relateable prose poems, Christine Heppermann presents the story of Addie, a girl attending Catholic high school, running track, getting a new boyfriend... getting pregnant, getting an abortion, and dealing with her feelings about it. The beautiful thing about this book is that even though the abortion is a major plotline, this is not treated like an issues book.

It's a nuanced exploration of Addie's experiences and how her life changes after this happens. She's a thoughtful
Tee loves Kyle Jacobson
Nov 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Addie has it all. She has a wonderful boyfriend a great best friend and she loves cross country running. Running is her life and she does it everyday even on off season.

But Addie has just found out some bad news and is affected by it. So much so she stops running and hanging out with her BFF and boyfriend. She starts hanging out with a former cross country runner Juliana. As there relationship grows her other relationships are put on the back burner. Her boyfriend wants to know what is going on
Nov 29, 2015 rated it liked it
I have always been very intrigued and interested in books written in verse. They're so quick to read so I am more than happy to give them a shot. I enjoyed this one and the many layers and themes of it but I felt that at the end, way too many things were left open ended and unresolved. It seemed unfinished and as if there should have been many more chapters to read. That was the main reason my rating decreased. Also, I just felt as if it sort of moved almost too quickly for me to attach myself t ...more
Jenefer R
Mar 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016-read
A really great verse novel in the spirit of Ellen Hopkins. I got thought it in a matter of about 90 minutes total. Addie is pretty relatable. I would recommend this to one of my students who is a reluctant reader because it is intense but very easy to read.
Kyungnan Gam
Sep 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
This book is similar to poetry but in some ways, it can also not be a poetry. I like how all of the short stories is about Christine Heppermann, the author of this book. She talks about her childhood and all of those extra feelings that she felt in the past, which we can feel the same too.

"She closes my notebook opens her mouth. Closes it. Opens it and says, "So this is your story?"
At the bottom of a big hill, you always have a choice: Do you keep going or do you quit?
This time I decide to keep
Nidah (SleepDreamWrite)
This was interesting. Sad, but I did like the writing style.
Paige (Illegal in 3 Countries)
See more of my reviews on The YA Kitten! My copy was an ARC I got as a reviewer for YA Books Central.
Diversity Rating: 1 – Tokenism
QUILTBAG: 2 (Addie is bi)
Disability: ? (idk how to rate this because it’s unclear; Addie’s crush Juliana had a breakdown and slashed up some lotion bottles, so she sees a shrink regularly and is on meds)
Intersectionality: 1 (very positive portrayal of abortion)

I’ve been waiting in line for this book since the deal announcement–and I think that was bef
Ciara (Lost at Midnight)
Verse novels are always a hit-or-miss for me. They can either completely immerse me in the story, or leave me feeling jarred and disjointed. For me, using verse in a novel needs to have purpose and be impacting. The words need to flow easily, lest they become choppy and distorted. Christine Heppermann's ASK ME HOW I GOT HERE is everything I hope for in a verse novel. It is touching, poignant, and moving, a must read for any young girl navigating this messy thing called life.

As most verse novels
Addie is the star runner on her Catholic school's cross country team. She's dating Craig, who is kind of a jerk, until she stumbles into Nick, who isn't. Shenanigans ensue, and Addie winds up pregnant... but don't be fooled into thinking this is just another tropey teen pregnancy book. Instead, you will find a delightfully subversive read with unconventional gems in all the right places.

I adored this book. To be fair, I was predisposed to like it due to my obsession with Heppermann's first book,
Find this review and more fantastical things at The Leaning Tower of Tomes.

The review:

While I haven’t read any A.S. King, I have read Ellen Hopkins and Laurie Halse Anderson. Ask Me How I Got Here does tackle serious teen issues in verse form, much like Ellen Hopkin’s writing style and Laurie Halse Anderson’s stories, but Ask Me How I Got Here lacks the depth it should have, and that I wanted it to have.

Basically: teen abortion, with some religion (and questioning of religion). I really liked th
May 14, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016, 3-stars
i absolutely cannot stand
books in verse
be they short, long
in between or otherwise.

flowery verses
sharp as tac haiku
metaphors as long as my arm
i don't care for it
at all
i may write them myself
but i have always
believed that books
in verse
can never quite be
book, book.

i didn't know this book was in
that it was one long
i was already doubtful enough about the actual story
so when i turned to the 1st page
saw that it was
i wasn't happy
i wanted to stop right then
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Christine Heppermann writes fiction, poetry, and criticism. Her books include What Goes Up (coming summer 2020); Ask Me How I Got Here; Poisoned Apples: Poems for You, My Pretty; City Chickens; and the Backyard Witch series (with Ron Koertge). She currently reviews young adult books for the Chicago Tribune.

Christine grew up in Omaha, Nebraska, where she attended an all-girls Catholic high school.

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