Author: Jennifer Brown
*I received this book free of charge in exchange for an honest review*
Reading level: Young Adult
Hardcover: 368 pages
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (May 10, 2011)
When Alex falls for the charming new boy at school, Cole, a handsome, funny, sports star who adores her, she can’t believe she’s finally found her soul mate-someone who truly understands her and loves her for who she really is.
At first, Alex is blissfully happy. Sure, Cole seems a little jealous of her relationship with her best friends, Zack and Bethany, but what guy would want his girlfriend spending all of her time with another boy? But as the months pass, Alex can no longer ignore Cole’s small put-downs, pinches, or increasingly violent threats. As Alex struggles to come to terms with the sweet boyfriend she fell in love with and the boyfriend whose “love” she no longer recognizes, she is forced to choose – between her “true love” and herself.
I actually finished reading this book a few days ago but I was at a loss for words on how to describe my feelings for it in a post. Yes, it was that good and that emotional of a read. Physical abuse in the young adult genre is a subject that is not touched on that much. I think authors are either afraid to talk about it in a novel for this genre, or it might even be something that is frowned upon. In Bitter End, author Jennifer Brown stepped over that boundary and gave it her all. I am so happy that she did and shared a story that teens need to be aware of.
I could understand when Alex falls for Cole. He seems like the perfect guy that is sexy, sweet and romantic. Yet as you read further into the relationship, you start to realize that Cole isn’t so perfect. He is possessive, controlling, and yes he is abusive. We can all say that we would never be in a relationship that involves abuse, but you never really know what a person goes through and how easy it is to fall into this trap of a relationship. The way the author tells the story, she builds it to where the abuse is slow in progression. You don’t realize you are in one until you are in too deep.
When Alex starts making excuses for Cole and his actions, you start to feel the conflict that she is going through in picking between her love for Cole and her love for her friends. I cannot express how much this book effected me. It was written beautifully and in my opinion, needs to be in school libraries for young teens to read.
If you haven’t already bought your copy of Bitter End, you need to grab yourself one. An emotional read that will have you thinking about the book for days after.
Outstanding Book That Will Stay On My Bookshelf
For Rereading! 5 STARS