I really wanted to like this book. I really did. Damaged teens? Dark secrets? Sexy flirtations that blossom into love? Like, this is me at 16 in a book dying to be read and loved and adored and given five stars and glowing reviews. But I just didn’t. It didn’t work for me. In fact, it kinda annoyed me.
Justin and Emmy both end up in Heartland Academy, a boarding school slash longterm therapy care centre. For different issues and different reasons, they’re lost and hurting. Slowly, together with some of the more long term kids, they form a ragtag group that slowly discovers the meaning of trust and friendship.
To get straight to the point: I really didn’t like the representations of mental illness/issues/diseases in this novel. They felt flat, 2D and cardboard. The kind where a few pages of tears, frustrations and anger – and they could be solved. The issues felt too easily solved, too shallow, to easily plastered-and-kissed-better.
The characters had nice moments, but I couldn’t buy into the story, I couldn’t fall in love with the characters. It just didn’t do it for me. On any level.
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