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The Unfinished Life of Addison Stone: A Novel

3.72  ·  Rating details ·  2,027 ratings  ·  472 reviews
For fans of Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, Girl, Interrupted, and A.S. King, National Book Award-finalist Adele Griffin tells the fully illustrated story of a brilliant young artist, her mysterious death, and the fandom that won't let her go.

From the moment she stepped foot in NYC, Addison Stone’s subversive street art made her someone to watch, and her viole
Paperback, 256 pages
Published August 23rd 2016 by Soho Teen (first published August 12th 2014)
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Average rating 3.72  · 
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Sep 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
The Unfinished Life of Addison Stone is a gripping read, even though it isn't a pretty story, or a new one. It's a faux-biography in which Addison Stone isn't actually a character. Addison is a stereotype, and telling her story in a traditional format would probably make her both unbearably unsympathetic and (dare I say it) boring.

And so Addison is the subject instead of the protagonist, and her story is told through interviews and magazine photos and newspaper clippings, with occasional insets
Melissa McShane
Written as an extended series of interviews with those who knew the brilliant artist Addison Stone, complete with photos and reproductions of her art, this book sketches out the life of a troubled genius whose death is ambiguous and whose life was as fractured as the book’s conceit. Griffin is good at evoking the different personalities and keeping their voices separate, and the whole thing feels very real, as if Addison Stone was a real person whose art you might be able to see in a museum, or ...more
Adam Silvera
Mar 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2014
THE UNFINISHED LIFE OF ADDISON STONE is the literary equivalence of a compelling film documentary. Addison Stone is a character I won't forget.
Feb 15, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Last new-to-me book for the Book Battle.

I can see two opposing ways of reading this book, broadly speaking. The first is to view it as a critique of celebrity culture, of society’s tendency to worship the Beautiful! The Hot! The Young! The Talented! (and of course even better if those are all rolled into one tortured-artist package), and how that can reduce the person to a consumer commodity. This reading would view the character of Addison Stone as a uniquely gifted girl, who was doomed by her
Neil (or bleed)
Jul 04, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-i-own

I do like mysteries and The Unfinished Life of Addison Stone is a mystery novel worth reading for, at least in my opinion. I did solely sign-up for the mystery of why Addison Stone's life had been unfinished yet eventually I was lured by the interesting, admiring and kinda frustrating life of her; which has been told by the different people related to her, in one way or another.

Addison Stone is an art genius. Within the book, her arts, especially portraits have been admired by many people an
Nov 14, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is awesome. It's a mystery, but it's also not a mystery at all. Addison is a hot-to-trot artist everyone wants a piece of, but that's the problem in and of itself. When she dies under mysterious circumstances, everyone wants to tell their side of her story and everyone wants to point fingers at the other people in her life.

But Addison had a number of her own problems, including, but not limited to, the pressure of being a young and upcoming female artist, (view spoiler)
Elizabeth Kiem
Mar 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Disclaimer - I read this book as an ARC because I share a publisher/editor with Adele. I picked it up because of the photographs. I am a sucker for docu-fiction. Two days later I wrote to our mutual editor: "This is the best thing Soho Teen has published."

I mean it.

This book will have a cult following. Of this I am sure. It is fascinating, unique portrait ... not just of a talented troubled young artist, but of all the personal prisms through which she is observed.

PinkAmy loves books, cats and naps
Addison Stone takes the art world by storm with her hanging drawings and magnetic personality. Her death is a tragedy of unfulfilled talent leaving behind friends, family, fans and detractors. But who was she? Writer Adele Griffin inserts herself into the story as biographer of the fictional character, attempting to discover what made and unmade the teenager through a series of interviews with those who knew Addison best.

I love a fresh or unconventional take on storytelling and Griffin does just
Geoff Watson
Apr 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Griffin is one of the most engaging, original voices in YA. Incredible characters and her knack for tone is brilliant. Couldn't put it down. ...more


When I read the synopsis for this book, I thought, ohhh, this reminds me of Daisy Jones & the Six. With the interview style audio and a full-cast to recite it. Sounds enticing...and the audio does play out really similar to Daisy Jones...but the story overall lacked a definitive ending or just something t
Jun 05, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya-fiction
This is a story about a brilliant young artist, told entirely from the POV of the many other folks in and around her life (before she died). The result: many, many MANY pages of other characters going on (and on. and on) about how cool and awesome and beautiful and mysterious and troubled this girl was. Gush gush gush. Swoon swoon swoon. I get that this was kind of the point - to consider how everyone took their own ideas of who Addison and ran with it, often to the detriment of Addison's health ...more
Paige Pagnotta
Wow, this book. Wow. I really did not want to put this book down until I had reached the end, so going to work when I was halfway through it felt quite torturous. As soon as I got home, I sat and finished it.

This may or may not contain spoilers (depending on your definition of the term) just to be safe...

(view spoiler)
Sep 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I got this book through the Amazon Vine program to review. This book was a breath of fresh air after reading a number of rather mediocre books over the last couple weeks.

This was a very well done fictional biography about an eighteen year old girl named Addison Stone who was gaining fame as an artist when she died. The book is a series of interviews with people who knew her and excerpts from interviews with her. There is a lot of speculation as to whether her death was an accident, suicide, or s
Aug 17, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have not read many docu-novels. In fact, I could count how many on one hand. I have to say that after reading this one that there should be more docu-novels. This book is my first introduction to author, Adele Griffin. Wow, Mrs. Griffin can write. For a spilt moment I actually believed that this book was based on a real person. This is kudos to the author's writing skills and how well this book was put together. I read that the author was thinking of just writing the docu-novel and then she im ...more
Aug 22, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arc
I feel a little generous giving this three stars. I didn't dislike it, I guess, just found it kind of directionless and uninspiring. I felt many of the characters interviewed for the book had voices that were either stereotypical or just so weirdly out-there that they didn't sound like real people to me. There must be some balance in between "cliché" and "too bizarre to be believable," right? And while I felt for Addison, especially in her struggling with mental illness, I also found her frustra ...more
Brittany Barrow Books
Apr 12, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: book-club
No. Just no.

I hated this "book" (using that term loosely here, folks...)

There were a lot of issues I took with it, but the two biggest ones were the AWFUL characters and the romanticizing of mental illness. Gross.

I would skip this one. (Book club read)
Sep 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 09, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the most unique and creative book that I have ever encountered. With the help of model pictures and donated pieces of art, Adele Griffin has been able to create the most realistic fictional-documented story I have ever read.

It always amazes me when I read a book where the main character's voice is barely present in the story, but, her presence, essence and livelihood is. With the supporting characters, the model who poses as Addison Stone, the website, etc. - they all bring together an
Sep 27, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Unfinished Life Of Addison Stone
Adele Griffin

What it's all about...

Addison Stone...a rather very dramatic dead. This is a book about her life and also about how she became dead.

Where it all takes place...

This book begins at her death and at her funeral and meanders throughout her life...through interviews we are able to see all parts of her, family, and friends.

When much of it happens...

Most of the book is the story of her life...her brief life.

Which characters ha
Dec 14, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
When I first started reading The Unfinished Life Of Addison Stone, I had to stop and look up whether this was actually a true story or not. (It’s fiction, by the way.) Complete with artwork, photos, and excerpts from interviews with friends, boyfriends, and family members, Addison Stone’s brief and tumultuous career is laid out like a tell-all book. The mystery surrounding her last hours is the impetus for the fictional investigation and it quickly paints a picture of a very talented artist, but ...more
heather - NightlyReading
I was initially intrigued by the blurb of this book and was interested to learn all about Miss Addison Stone. What I learned was that this young girl, so full of life, had her share of problems just like the rest of us.

Addison was an up and coming brilliant artist. One to watch and boy did people watch. When she walked in the room, every eye was on her. It wasn't that she was beautiful, which she was, but the way that she carried herself with confidence that not a single person was better than h
Erin Cataldi
Aug 29, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014
I LOVED the concept for this book. It was totally engrossing and unique. Tens are going to eat this shit up! This story pieces together the life of Addison Stone through interviews, emails, articles, photographs, and paintings. Addison was a famous New York Artist who tragically died when she was only 18, this book attempts to piece together her life from people who knew her best or thought they knew her. Addison came from humble beginnings with a broken home and some severe mental problems. Art ...more
Sep 24, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Here's the deal. I didn't like this. It entertained me a little, during the actual reading process, but I didn't like it, or anyone in it. No one felt real; rather, every character seemed to be the glimmering archetype of every cliché. And ultimately, it's kind of a flat journey. I didn't feel any highs or lows, and while the conclusion isn't strictly unsatisfying—there are no unanswered threads or sudden improbable leaps—it does feel just...meh. I'm only giving it two stars for two reasons: the ...more
Love, love, love!

Addison Stone is a young artist who makes it big--she's the talk of New York City, dating the high society darlings, and her artwork sells for thousands. But, underneath it all, she's suffering from mental illness. The first page begins with a copy of her obituary. Was she murdered? Did she commit suicide? Was her fall from the bridge an accident?

Told in snippets of interviews, the book seems oh so real. The book is a piece of art--photographs of a striking Addison with her fri
Sarah Ludwig
Literally closed the book and said "meh." This is a gorgeous book and well-made. There are a few plot holes that I noticed, but I would have gotten over that had the story been satisfying. I kept waiting for the big reveal, the big piece of the mystery. But that never came, and so the ending felt incredibly flat. I wasn't sure what we were supposed to think about Addison. She's a complex character, but unsympathetic, in my opinion. I think this would hold my students' interest, and it actually d ...more
Cool concept well designed and pulled off successfully. I am too old and grumpy to suspend disbelief about this young lady's many art achievements, so I didn't read the whole thing. But it's inspired by the oral history of Edie Sedgewick that I devoured as a teenager, so points for style. Kids, once you are done with this one, read that one for actual art star misbehavior. ...more
♫✯Em loves Hollenstein✯♫❤the summertime and butterflies all belong to your creation❤
So f*cking creepy and sad!

The thing with Ida, the 'fake person in Addison's head" who convinced her to try kill herself, being a real person once and there being a photo of her in the same position as addy drew her..... Wow. Very haunting, and pretty sad. I recommend it for 13+ for language! and mature themes such as drug references.
Apr 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a special, special project. I was hooked immediately and was sad when it was time to go to bed. Spent all the next day reading it: loved the story, loved the photos and art, and couldn't stop thinking about "chandelier girl." ...more
Engaging. Uniquely told. Beautifully tragic. When you finish, you'll miss Addison, you'll wish you'd met Addison, and then you'll remember that not only is she dead, she never existed in the first place. I love fiction that blurs the lines of reality! ...more
K.K. Hendin
Mar 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Review to come.
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