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358 pages, Hardcover
First published June 16, 2015
When I finally pulled into the driveway that evening, the last digit was resting on a six, so I backed out again and drove around the block a few times until the odometer stopped where it belonged. And now I have to do that every time I park.Everything in life is perfect, pretty much, understanding mom, fantastic psychiatrist (not all psychiatrists are that awesome, I assure you), and she is a part of the popular "Mean Girls" at school. She hates them, but she fits in perfectly well with them, and she is perfectly able to disguise her OCD despite having been diagnosed with a severe form of it by the age of 10. I assure you, this is not true in real life. Nobody who has OCD can conceal it that well, particularly not a child. It is almost impossible that Samantha can fit in and disguise herself as normal to the most conceited, most judgmental, most observant group of girls on campus, girls who have known her since childhood.
As I scan the room, taking in the slips of paper scattered around me, I think I catch Caroline and pixie-cut girl look at each other. “What is this place?” I ask again, hearing the amazement in my own voice.Real life doesn't have friends with whom you can constantly click, with whom you immediately reveal your inner self.
Pixie Cut answers me. “We call it Poet’s Corner.”
“A-A-A-Andrew…” to the tune of the Chia Pet jingle, and then she starts cracking up.Bullying is a very, very serious issue, and this book does not give weight to it. It glosses over the fact that the character was a bully. It never truly delves into the mental process and the depths behind such an act. The main character feels bad about it, she feels a lot of remorse, but there is never any feeling of true emotion or sincerity upon her reflection into it.
“How can you not remember Andrew? That kid stuttered so badly he couldn’t even say his name. We used to follow him around singing that song.…You have to remember this!”
Oh, God. I do. It’s all starting to come back to me, and when she sings that horrible song again, I can see Kaitlyn and me in our skirts and ponytails, trailing behind him on the playground while he covered his ears, tears streaming down his face, trying to run away from us. We never let him get far.
These walls heard
me when no
one else could.
They gave my
words a home,
keep them safe.
Cheered, cried, listened.
Changed my life
for the better.
It wasn’t enough.
But they heard
every last word.
“Everyone’s got something. Some people are just better actors than others.”
“Sam: Do you always say exactly what you're thinking?
AJ: I try to. I like to know where I stand with people, and I figure I owe them the same courtesy. I mean, I'm never rude or hurtful about it, but I don't see any reason to be fake. That's a lot of work”
"Not Hailey. You." [Alexis] pokes my collarbone. And now I know precisely where I reside on her social ladder: Second rung from the bottom. Hailey occupies the last one, and as soon as she learns I'm invited to Alexis's birthday and she's not, she'll know it too.
"You have no idea how sad I've been, Samantha. I felt horrible not asking you. Even though our moms weren't friends in preschool, you and I were best friends in kindergarten!"
~Thank you Disney Hyperion for the review copy!~
If you could read my mind, you wouldn’t be smiling.