Top positive review
Everyone Needs to Read This Now!
Reviewed in the United States on August 30, 2016
“In the future . . . if by some miracle you ever find yourself in the position to fall in love again . . . fall in love with me.”
I'm going to start this review off with this statement: I didn't cry while I was reading this book, but I did cry several days later when I was looking back on Lily's story. That shows how emotionally charged this story is, along with the true power behind Colleen's writing. I'm not going to give away any spoilers because you need to go into the book blind. If you want to know what happens, there are definitely some reviews out there that tell you the big twists and turns. But take my advice and don't spoil this book for yourself. It will lose a lot if you go in knowing exactly what to expect. So seriously, don't do it to yourself. Just let the beauty of Colleen's writing sweep over you and sink in.
“All humans make mistakes. What determines a person's character aren't the mistakes we make. It's how we take those mistakes and turn them into lessons rather than excuses.”
This is honestly not only one of the best reads of 2016, but also one of the most (if not the most) empowering. I want to give this book to every man, woman, and even teenager (it's definitely a NA/adult read) and tell them... READ THIS NOW! Do you want to know why? Because this book carries with it a very strong message, one that shows strength and courage that many people might not have at the time, but after reading will understand and gain. I honestly don't know if there has ever been a time when I was prouder to be reading the heroine's story due to her choices. Ultimately though, Colleen Hoover wrote a book that everyone can take something away from. Colleen always writes such unique stories, and this one is certainly no exception. But the one thing I will say is that this is truly her best book yet.
“Just because someone hurts you doesn't mean you can simply stop loving them. It's not a person's actions that hurt the most. It's the love. If there was no love attached to the action, the pain would be a little easier to bear.”
Lily's story is one that I never wanted to stop reading. If I know that I'm going to need to read a book in multiple sittings (which was the case with this book), I usually try to find a good place to stop. One in which, nothing major is happening and nobody is facing some drastic/perilous moment. Well you see the problem with this book is the fact that there is literally NO. GOOD. STOPPING. POINT! None! There was never a part where I felt safe in letting this book sit overnight because I knew that the story and the what if's would play endlessly in my mind. So I stayed up and read it all in one sitting because I simply couldn't stop. Lily was someone that I connected to right from the get go. I knew as soon as the book started that I would like her, and that never once stopped while I was reading. However, I didn't realize how much her character would affect me while I was reading. As I said before, after I was finished reading, I couldn't have been prouder of her decisions. The strength she had throughout the story to go through what she did, but also her resolve and conviction just made me constantly cheer her on. Lily is truly one of the most admirable characters that I have ever had the pleasure of reading about, and that admiration goes extraordinarily deep.
“Life is a funny thing. We only get so many years to live it, so we have to do everything we can to make sure those years are as full as they can be. We shouldn't waste time on things that might happen someday, or maybe even never.”
I mentioned it briefly above, but this book has a very powerful message, and this message is actually carefully woven into the story from page 1. You obviously don't realize it when you start reading the novel, but it's there when you look back after finishing. And this is also why I'm going to reiterate the importance of going into the story blind, because just as unexpected and emotional it is for the reader to read and witness what Lily goes through, it is even more unexpected and emotional for Lily. This is where this book truly shines, because you as a reader feel like part of the story. There's a very slow burn while reading, one in which we get to know characters and see the develop in the ways that we as humans get to know each other...but then Colleen rips that metaphorical rug out from under all of us, and shocks us with one revelation after another. But you know what? That's exactly how life is sometimes...sometimes you never see things coming in a million years and you have to figure out how to deal with these radical changes you never thought would happen.
“It stops here. With me and you. It ends with us.”
Where this book really got me though was the meaning of the title. Throughout the entire time I was reading, I kept wondering what the title meant. Because come on...this is Colleen Hoover and literally EVERYTHING has some significance (no matter how small). And when I got to the part of the story where the title finally made sense, guys let me tell you...this had an impact on me like no other. I just sat there with my book in my hands staring at the page for a solid 5 minutes. It is the perfect title for the perfect book.
“Fifteen seconds. That’s all it takes to completely change everything about a person. Fifteen seconds that we'll never get back.”
I connected with this book in my own way, and for that I am extraordinarily thankful to Colleen Hoover for even writing this book. The author's note at the end was just as powerful and amazing as the rest of the story, but it shows just how personal this story was for her to write. I applaud Colleen for writing this book and not "making things easy" for the main character or glossing over the "bad parts." This is an incredibly realistic book that makes you realize many things and leaves an imprint on your soul. It's important to remember that everyone must make extraordinarily difficult decisions in their life, and not everyone will agree with them. If this book even empowers one woman to take steps in making an important decision, the Colleen Hoover did her job. And I count myself lucky to have had the honor of reading this story because I am a changed person because of it!
Happy reading :)