“There is no such thing as bad people. We’re all just people who sometimes do bad things.”
Title: It Ends With Us
Author: Colleen Hoover
Release date: August 2nd 2016
GoodReads Rating: 4.5
My Rating: 5 stars
The Plot: A heart wrenching, novel about love, loss and the price that comes with it, It Ends With Us is a New Adult novel from the queen of NA. We begin with Lily and her new boyfriend, hot, arrogant, neurosurgeon, Ryle, but all is not peachy with the two of them. She begins thinking back to her first love, Atlas, through diary entries made by her 15 year old self.
A Quick Note on Names: This is irrelevant to the actual plot but I wanted to mention it anyway. What is with stupid nanes in contemporary fiction? In the past I’ve dealt with Bennett, Benson, and now Ryle and Atlas. Are these normal names in the U.S and I just don’t realise? Anyway on with the review…
Lily as a protagonist: Wow, what a fantastic protagonist. Lily was awesome to read about and to really see the world from her eyes. All this meant was that I really feet for her when she had to make some tough decisions. I will say that I found the letters a little bit boring, but I think that was because I didn’t want to read about her and Atlas at 15, but of her and Ryle, because that’s what I was shipping, but retrospectively I understand that they had to be there. Building on that it really enabled you to get such a sense of why she lives the way she does, or makes the decisions she does, so all in all it worked out for the best. I really felt for Liyt, and definitely felt as conflicted as she did. It was almost too easy to slip her shoes on and really wonder what you would do in this situation. She was smart, and her narration was entertaining and heartbreaking in equal measure, when it needed to be. Really, this book definitely would not have made such an impact if it wasn’t for her.
Ryle and Domestic Abuse: I had no idea that domestic abuse was going to be in this book at all, but It Ends With Us has really changed the way I view domestic abuse. I should probably pint out that I have no first hand experience, I don’t even think I have any second hand experience, so I can’t sit here and say that it was excellent representation. However from my standpoint it was handled impressively by Colleen Hoover. Like Lily, I fell for Ryle in thirty seconds flat and was shipping them like it was nobody’s business. Then, when he lashed out the first time, this was hen he pushed her and she hit her head, I was ready to brush it off as an accident, because accident’s do happen. It really wasn’t until he pushed her and she fell down the stairs, but he kept repeating that she fell, I started getting a bad feeling about the relationship. I think the reason I love the way that this was handled was because it was late in the narrative, I feel like I knew Ryle, that I trusted Ryle, but I guess this is something that does happen in otherwise ‘happy’ relationships. The only thing that I would have loved to have seen was something, anything, from his point of view, not so we could feel sympathetic and forgive him, simply to see the fuller picture, and the way he viewed his own actions.
Atlas and 4 stars: You may have twigged that I absolutely adored this book, so you’re probably wondering why it hasn’t got five stars, and this is the reason. I just didn’t like Atlas. There wasn’t anything wrong with him, per say, he just felt a bit bland to me. There was an effort to flesh him out though Lily’s diary entries but his story is never fully explored, or at least not to an extent that I fell in love with his character. I was way more invested in Lily and Ryle, both as a couple and as individuals than I was with Atlas, unfortunately.
A Girl’s Best Friend: I don’t know about you, but I’m always super wary when my protagonist is dating her friends brother, or something similar, because it really limit’s her circle of friends. Especially when Alyssa asks Lily what is going on between her and Ryle, which happens after he goes to Cambridge. I really thought she was going to defend her brother and then she didn’t. Alyssa defended her friend, telling her than she didn’t think Lily should forgive Ryle for what he had done. Obviously she was completely right, but what I loved so much about this tine scene was the fact that it really proved this bond of friendship.
*In case I wasn’t clear, because of all my talk about shipping, I obviously no longer ship Lily and Ryle, because of obvious reasons. This does, however, put into perspective how hard it can be, or I assume it can be in a similar situation.*
Have you read This Ends With Us? What did you think about it? What is your favourite Colleen Hoover book? I think it’s probably mine because of the deeper subject matter, either this one or Ugly Love.
Thanks for reading!