Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Tuesday Reviews: How It Ends by Catherine Lo

Title: How It Ends
Author: Catherine Lo
Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers
Release Date: June 7, 2016
Format Read: ARC
Rating: 3.5 stars

Description from Goodreads: There are two sides to every story.

It's friends-at-first-sight for Jessie and Annie, proving the old adage that opposites attract. Shy, anxious Jessie would give anything to have Annie's beauty and confidence. And Annie thinks Jessie has the perfect life, with her close-knit family and killer grades. They're BFFs... until suddenly they're not.

Told through alternating points of view, HOW IT ENDS is a wildly fast but deeply moving read about a friendship in crisis. Set against a tumultuous sophomore year of bullying, boys, and backstabbing, the novel shows what can happen when friends choose assumptions and fear over each other.

Not too long ago, I had a bestfriendship fall apart. I've never been one to get along that well with females, and yet I'd been close with this girl for five years, and then suddenly there was a betrayal, and things went downhill from there. Reading the back of this book was like reading a summary of how things went down for us, so I was highly intrigued when I received an ARC of HOW IT ENDS in the mail.

I actually really enjoyed this story, The differences between Jessie and Annie, and the drastic changes when swapping between POVs, were done perfectly. Annie is her own person, and Jessie is hers. Their friendship is forged around chapter three, and then you see it grow, and shape, and slowly start to fall apart, and it was great to be able to see if from both of their sides versus just one. 

What made me laugh was how much of a parallel this book drew with my own personal experience of losing a best friend. The accuracy of reactions and events in comparison to what happened with me were spot on, which was nice compared to how cliche Hollywood has made the break-up of a bestfriendship. It was increasingly odd to find similarities, which were on nearly every page... until about 3/4 of the way through the book, That's when things took a turn that I wasn't expecting, and suddenly it wasn't just an argument, it was a full blown fight. 

Things started to get really good, and that's when I got to the ending.

The ending of this book just didn't work for me. I thought I knew where it was leading, and I was super excited for it, and then... that's not what happened. The last ten chapters or so really took the book's rating down for me. I felt like a different outcome would have been so much better for this plotline.

Taking the ending into account, I give HOW IT ENDS a 3.5 star rating. It's a great story of friendship, typical high-school life, and the average obstacles that you face when you have a BFF.


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