I am so excited to be apart of this tour! Make sure to check out my feelings with my review and the giveaway at the bottom to get a copy!
The Way I Used To Be
By Amber Smith
Margaret K. McElderry Books
Release Date: March 22, 2016
Rating: 5 Stars
ABOUT THE WAY I USED TO BE:
In the tradition of Speak, this extraordinary debut novel shares the unforgettable story of a young woman as she struggles to find strength in the aftermath of an assault.
Eden was always good at being good. Starting high school didn’t change who she was. But the night her brother’s best friend rapes her, Eden’s world capsizes.
What was once simple, is now complex. What Eden once loved—who she once loved—she now hates. What she thought she knew to be true, is now lies. Nothing makes sense anymore, and she knows she’s supposed to tell someone what happened but she can’t. So she buries it instead. And she buries the way she used to be.
Told in four parts—freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior year—this provocative debut reveals the deep cuts of trauma. But it also demonstrates one young woman’s strength as she navigates the disappointment and unbearable pains of adolescence, of first love and first heartbreak, of friendships broken and rebuilt, and while learning to embrace a power of survival she never knew she had hidden within her heart.
I would like to thank the publisher for providing me with a copy for an honest review.
The Way I Used To Be is inspiring, haunting and a moving portrayal that will touch the human spirit! This book had me gasping for breath, cringing and crying, but with that said, it was such a well expressed journey for a girl who has something so horrific happen. The emotions and feelings were so raw and well expressed. I really felt everything as she went through it. I felt all of Eden’s heart-breaks, all her struggles to deal with the relationships in her life, and the fact that they could never fully understand her.
Eden is a sweet, dorky, carefree fourteen year old girl, till one day everything changes, she will change. How can anyone ever be the same after what happens to Eden? Eden is in her room one night when her brothers best-friend Kevin comes in and violently rapes her. He threatens to kill her if she tells anyone. Kevin tells her not to tell anyone and that if she does no one will believe her.
The next morning she wants to believe it was just a dream but can’t seem to escape the reality. She knows she has to make a choice now or never tell or live with the lie. She decides that her family and everyone else loves Kevin too much and will never believe her, she will live with the lie.
Each year that goes by Eden struggles more and more to deal with what happened. She wants to forget and replace those horrible memories with new ones. She starts doing reckless things and it has people getting angry with her. She wants people to understand but no one really can.
Can Eden find what she needs to heal? Will she finally tell someone what happened to her? What will the consequences be of Eden’s reckless behavior? You have to read this moving book to find out!
The Way I Used To Be is a book that will always remain in my heart and impacted me profoundly. I am a mom and I have to say that I think it is so important to talk about these things with our kids, not to remain silent. I had my kids read it right away and they both were impacted by it. I explained how most cases are someone you know and never remain silent. I hope that teens and parents read this book, everyone should, it really is so powerful!!! I can’t wait to see what Amber writes next. I am giving this book 5 out of 5 stars.
ABOUT AMBER SMITH:
Amber Smith grew up in Buffalo, NY and now lives in Charlotte, NC with her two dogs. After graduating from art school with a BFA in Painting, she earned her MA in Art History. When she’s not writing, she is working as a curator and art consultant. She has also written on the topics of art history and modern and contemporary art. The Way I Used to Be is her first novel.
(3) Finished Copies of THE WAY I USED TO BE (US Only)