March 06, 2018

#Bookclub: The Way I Used to Be by Amber Smith @YoungAdultBC @WinterHavenLib

About the Book:

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.

Make sure to join us tonight at 5pm to discuss this book and choose the title for Aug. 

Reviewed By:  Jessica P. & Endy
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Recommended Age: Young Adult
Genre: Rape, Contemporary 
How I Acquired this book: Purchased
Overall rating: ★★★★★
Goodreads | Amazon
About the Author:
Amber Smith grew up in Buffalo, New York, and now lives in Charlotte, North Carolina, 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. She is the author of The Way I Used to Beand The Last to Let Go. Visit her online at

Noteworthy experiences while reading this book: This one has such promise 

Check out author's other books? Yes 
Recommend this book? Not really 

Notes and Opinions:  I am sad to say that this one just didn't work out for us.  It started off so well but after the event that changed Eden's life the book got very slow and very stagnate.  I really did love how her PTSD came through during the day after it was so genuine. (speaking from personal experince) but after that the story pretty much just went downhill. 

Go Into This One Knowing: Goes from 90 to 0 in 2.3 seconds. 

 Disclaimer: "All opinions are 100% honest and my own."  Thanks to Goodreads and Amazon for the book cover, about the book, and author information. Buying via these links allows my site to get a % of the sale at no cost to you. This money gets used to buy items for giveaways. 

FTC Guidelines: In accordance with FTC guidelines regarding endorsements and testimonials for bloggers, I would like my readers to know that many of the books I review are provided to me for free by the publisher or author of the book in exchange for an honest review. If am compensated for any reviews on this site I will state that post has been sponsored. 

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