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Even If We Break

3.44  ·  Rating details ·  61 ratings  ·  46 reviews

From #1 New York Times bestselling author Marieke Nijkamp comes a shocking new thriller about a group of friends tied together by a game and the deadly weekend that tears them apart.

FIVE friends go to a cabin.
FOUR of them are hiding secrets.
THREE years of history bind them.
TWO are doomed from the start.
ONE person wants to end this.

Are you ready to pla

Hardcover, 336 pages
Expected publication: September 15th 2020 by Sourcebooks Fire
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  • Even If We Break by Marieke Nijkamp
    Even If We Break
    Release date: Sep 15, 2020
    Enter for a chance to win 1 of 25 advance copies of EVEN IF WE BREAK by Marieke Nijkamp, #1 New York Times bestselling author of THIS IS WHERE IT ENDS ...more

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    Giveaway dates: Jun 22 - Jul 13, 2020

    Countries available: U.S.

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    Average rating 3.44  · 
    Rating details
     ·  61 ratings  ·  46 reviews

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    Nilufer Ozmekik
    May 20, 2020 rated it liked it
    Oh, no! I hear the choo choo sounds of the disappointment train is about to arrive to the “this story is going anywhere” stop! Five friends in the cabin with secrets gave me “Cabin in the Woods’ vibes but promising premise and exciting start turned into something slow, repetitive, boring drama. And slowly all those brilliant potentials start to drown in a muddy place as my dreams about reading action packed, full of adrenalin rush thriller disappear forever!

    I like the representation of transgend
    1. A Weekend Getaway.
    2. A Game.
    3. Deadly Secrets.

    I will never skip a book with these buzzwords.

    Sign me up!
    Mara YA Mood Reader
    Yaasss bring on the creep factor just in time for Fall!!

    Rec-It Rachel
    Jan 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
    first book finished in 2020
    Jun 25, 2020 rated it really liked it
    Shelves: teen
    I had a little trouble with the point of view changes. I also find this a little too violent for me to recommend to most teens. Maybe I'm a naive parent, but I'd like to think none of my kids friends are capable of this kind of terror
    I received an ARC through NetGalley from Sourcebooks for this YA thriller. Five teens with a stressful friendship history go to a cabin to play an RPG, when things start to go off script and they are running for their lives. I liked the alternating character perspectives of 5 unique and diverse characters. Each character felt very distinct, but I wanted more backstory to make the tension higher. The story was not defined by their diversity, but about what got them to the cabin and what would hel ...more
    I hope this turns out to be everything her sophomore novel is not. I will gladly wish for anything but.
    Jun 21, 2020 rated it really liked it
    I received this book from NetGalley in exchange of an honest review. Thank you, Sourcebooks Fire, for this opportunity!

    TW: transfobic assault, panic attacks, addiction, torture, death, violence

    Ever, Finn, Carter, Liva and Maddy are a group of friends tied together by a game called Gonfalon, a role play game created by one of them. Now three years later, everything is different, they are changed and one weekend in a forest cabin will force them to confront their lies, fears and secrets and while
    Andria Sedig
    May 06, 2020 rated it liked it
    Shelves: read-in-2020
    This book had SO. MUCH. POTENTIAL. The first half of the book did a really spectacular job building anxiety and suspense while creating an incredibly spooky ambiance. I loved that this book was about a bunch of kids who like to role play stories together. I loved the different point of views and how the author slowly began to unravel backstories and create tension between the characters. I loved the haunted cabin backstory and how that was woven into the mystery that the characters were solving. ...more
    Jun 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
    EVEN IF WE BREAK by Marieke Nijkamp is a fantastic YA thriller! I loved reading this book and finished it in one day! This novel is about a group of five friends who go to a cabin to play a game but no one is safe. The point of view switches between the five friends so you really get to feel where their motivations come from. I loved the elements of suspense and mystery but I really loved the diversity of characters. It was so great to read a book with a character who uses they/them pronouns, a ...more
    May 21, 2020 rated it liked it
    Shelves: alright, 2020, arc
    I'm torn.
    This is the second book I've read by Marieke Nijkamp, and there were some things I enjoyed. Ahem:
    1) It was definitely a thriller and I'm usually hard-pressed to find a thriller that doesn't keep me turning the pages
    2) It's use of RPGs as the backdrop for the plot and the friendship was really interesting and well done; I hadn't seen a book that used that before. I'm not super familiar with that world, but it seemed very well-researched. And finally:
    3) The diversity?
    This is where thi
    May 21, 2020 added it
    *Spoiler free*

    Even though thrillers are so hit or miss for me, I seem to be drawn to every single one I stumble across. This one was no different. I had seen it around here and there, but when I finally found out what it was about, I was intrigued. And when I got the chance to read it, I jumped. Broken friendships and a deadly weekend, secrets and lies. It sounded like something that'd terrify me in the best way. Trigger warnings: blood, addiction, gore

    I guess thrillers that I love are just real
    Jun 14, 2020 rated it liked it
    Shelves: 7-8-and-9
    Thanks to the publisher for providing a digital ARC of Even If We Break in exchange for an honest review.

    I'm a self proclaimed horror junky. I used to pride myself on having read every single goosebumps book (published pre 2013), I grew up on scooby doo, then goosebumps, then are you afraid of the dark and the haunting hour and now I watch and read every horror story I can get my hands on. Even If We Break is not a horror story.

    Even in kids horror, one of the most important aspects of a scary st
    Sarah Leigh
    Jun 27, 2020 rated it really liked it
    "Your journey always starts with a murder."
    Five teenagers go up a mountain to spend one final weekend playing their LARP/RPG. Each of them is broken. Each of them has a secret. Each of them is doomed.

    Full disclosure - I started reading this book at about 11:30 at night and ended up reading it straight through because I could not put it down. I NEEDED to know how the story ended. If you are like me, with a bit of a runaway imagination, and you tend to be drawn into thriller/horror novels - maybe
    Baraboo Public Library Teen Reads
    Rating: 3.5 stars

    Even If We Break has a lot to offer as a YA novel. The characters are wonderfully diverse: two of the five (Finn and Ever) identify as transgender (one of them is non-binary, while the other suffers from arthritis and uses crutches). The third main character, Maddy, is non-neurotypical and suffers from chronic pain, leading to a pain pill addiction. Carter has secrets of his own, while Liva, the rich popular teen, always feels left out. The romance between the two transgender te
    Jun 06, 2020 rated it liked it
    I was so happy to read this story centered around trans, non-binary, disabled, and neurodiverse teens! The representation is fabulous, and the characters are interesting. No character is defined by their gender, sexuality, disability, or anything. They all have complete lives, positive traits, and flaws. At times, the story was terrifying, gripping, heartfelt, and funny. The characters' relationships were interesting and complex, and I liked how the story highlighted themes of wealth, class, and ...more
    Jul 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
    Shelves: 2020, mystery, lgbtqia
    What starts as a queer Clue-like LARPing romp turns into a real mystery in this amazing new heart-pounder from Marieke Nijkamp. While I felt that there were some laggy bits in the plot (I am often bored by long stretches of self-reflection), there was enough action to keep the plot moving along. I love that, although the characters are all implied white, there’s a tiny comment that sneaks in that basically says “this is what YA always looks like and it’s time for that to change” (it’s subtle, bu ...more
    Dallas Strawn
    May 29, 2020 rated it liked it
    I have such mixed thoughts on this book. I consider myself a fan of Marieke Nijkamp's. I LOVED her debut book....hated the second book she wrote, but was still super thrilled for this one and hit the button to request it on NetGalley as quickly as it was on there. And at first I was so disappointed. I was bored to tears by the beginning, I thought the whole role-playing game plot theme was dumb as could be, and at the 30% mark I was ready to DNF this and call it a day...but then something wild h ...more
    Jun 01, 2020 rated it liked it
    I’ve never read a book with so much diversity. I think it will resonate with a lot of young adults as it represent more of the current culture than any other book I’ve read. It’s diversity in race, which is one of the things that goes mostly unspecified, but neuro-diversity a gender-diversity are a big part of this book, but definitely not the main point.

    Ever, Finn, Maddy, Carter and Lila are group of friends who are going to Liva’s cabin the woods to play their role playing game one last time.
    Jun 12, 2020 rated it it was ok
    So, like several other reviews, this book has several good things about it - inclusive character representation, from trans characters, differently abled characters, an autistic character ... It also treats each of these characters as significant, essential elements of the whole story. They aren't just "window dressing" or tokenized additions. That being said, the story itself was just not great. I really didn't feel like it went many places that mattered, or, rather, the book didn't do a good e ...more
    May 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
    Five friends head out for a weekend to complete their long-standing role-playing game, knowing it is the end as they graduate high school and head off on their own paths. Though they have grown apart over the years, each has their reasons for wanting to bring the group back together one last time. For one, the purpose is more deadly.

    One of the main things I loved about this was the use of the RPG to drive the story-line. RPGs, like D&D, have risen in popularity over the last couple of years. I
    May 22, 2020 rated it really liked it
    Thank you to Netgalley for this ARC!

    YO THIS WAS WILD (until about 2/3 of the book, then it kind of dragged)! This book was so incredibly well-written and the plot of it was great. Again, Marieke proves just what a great writer they are and how well they handle multiple POVs.

    My favourite part of this book was the RPG element. I loved the little bits of RPG storytelling in between every few chapters or so. It was a nice way to break up the narrative without straying from the plot.

    My only issue wa
    Shelly Shaffer
    Jun 28, 2020 rated it really liked it
    This book takes readers on an adventure where five friends go to a cabin in the woods to play an RPG game over one weekend. The RPG game they play has to do with solving murders in a magical world, but when the game turns real, the teens must figure out how to survive. The characters in the story have diverse identities: a nuerodiverse, ex-Lacrosse star; a trans boy and trans girl; a wealthy, popular girl; and a boy who wants to be wealthy and popular. Nijkamp addresses many of the struggles fac ...more
    Jun 18, 2020 rated it really liked it
    Shelves: arc, 2020
    I received a free advanced reader’s copy from Net Galley. One of my favorite things about this author is her ability to change what her books are about so significantly. This book is unlike any other I have read by her or that I have read in general. I do not have a lot of knowledge about live action role play games, and learned a lot and gained a new respect through this reading. I appreciated the incredibly diverse and realistic group of characters. At its core, Even If We Break is a story of ...more
    Shannon Hollinger
    Jun 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
    This was a fast-paced, interesting YA mystery thriller. Diverse characters and a suspenseful plot kept me turning the pages, but it was the mystery that kept me hooked. I enjoyed the way the characters' RPG roles intertwined and influenced their realities, but found the game itself a bit distracting (although I'm sure there are people who will love it).

    The mysterious ghost story about the cabin was a nice touch - I would have liked to see a little more of this element, if only to keep the reade
    Melanie Johnson
    Jul 11, 2020 rated it it was ok
    The premise sounds amazing:woods,cabin,ghost stories and 5 friends. This is YA story that reads very YA, so there is nothing wrong with that per se, but I’ve read a lot of YA that was enjoyable to me as an older reader. There is a lot of angst and insecurity and several times I thought “geez, just tell them how you feel already!” Also, this wasn’t very scary because the story was really more about these kids inner turmoil instead of a “Halloween” type book. I think the cover and the blurb is a d ...more
    Jun 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
    A group of friends is playing one last game, into their world of Gonfalon. The story is told from alternating viewpoints, and each friend has something to say about their friendships, and their friendships are fading. So, they know this may be their last game together at Liva's cabin in the mountain. There are some stories of murder in those mountains, and when things start to go wrong, the friends first thought is of those stories. As people get hurt and maybe even killed, the friends have to f ...more
    Amber Brooks Bowie
    Jun 04, 2020 rated it liked it
    I am an avid reader of mystery, thriller, and suspense books, and Marieke Nijkamp never ceases to keep my stomach in knots when I read. I have 2 other books from this author, and they are able to capture and hold my students' (and my) interest. In "Even If We Break," readers learn about a group of friends who uses a cabin to "play a game". This book definitely brings the thrill, and sometimes loses my interest with extra information. Some elements were a little confusing, but overall, it was a g ...more
    Victoria Bunce
    Jul 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
    I received a copy of EVEN IF WE BREAK on NetGalley in exchange for my honest review. Thank you to the author and publisher for this opportunity.

    FIVE stars and here’s why:

    Marieke Nijkamp does not disappoint! I’m a sucker for YA stories with a mystery and thriller thread to them. And the author did a fantastic job of weaving in a suspenseful plot about how far someone would go for a friend. If you love suspense stories with a diverse cast, fast-paced writing, and characters that lingered long afte
    Jul 11, 2020 rated it really liked it
    This was an incredible thriller that really had me spooked at times. I didn't spend much time thinking about who was behind the things that were happening until about 200 pages in, at which point I figured it out and then later found out I was right. The story was interesting and I really enjoyed it, the way the role play game fitted into the story was really fun. There was a lot of diversity in this small set of characters, which is what drew me into the book in the first place. There's trans r ...more
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    Marieke Nijkamp a storyteller, dreamer, globe-trotter, geek.


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