BOOK REVIEW: All the Rage by Courtney SummersAll the Rage by Courtney Summers
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Synopsis:

The sheriff’s son, Kellan Turner, is not the golden boy everyone thinks he is, and Romy Grey knows that for a fact. Because no one wants to believe a girl from the wrong side of town, the truth about him has cost her everything—friends, family, and her community. Branded a liar and bullied relentlessly by a group of kids she used to hang out with, Romy’s only refuge is the diner where she works outside of town. No one knows her name or her past there; she can finally be anonymous.But when a girl with ties to both Romy and Kellan goes missing after a party, and news of him assaulting another girl in a town close by gets out, Romy must decide whether she wants to fight or carry the burden of knowing more girls could get hurt if she doesn’t speak up. Nobody believed her the first time—and they certainly won’t now — but the cost of her silence might be more than she can bear.

With a shocking conclusion and writing that will absolutely knock you out,All the Rage examines the shame and silence inflicted upon young women after an act of sexual violence, forcing us to ask ourselves: In a culture that refuses to protect its young girls, how can they survive?

When all you can do is watch, you see.

Well, I begrudgingly give this five stars….Oh, come on. Yeah the hell right. Did anyone really expect me to give this any less than a bajillion stars? I am still awaiting the day I’ll pick up a Courtney Summers novel and not be floored by her simple words that portray deep, meaningful messages so many authors gloss over today. And even if that day comes? I know to the bottom of my soul, even if the story isn’t for me, I will still write her name, like, ten times in my review because that’s just what I do with my two favorite authors and because her words will never cease to have an impact on me. You know why? ‘Cuz she’s Courtney fuckin’ Summers and she isn’t afraid to get raw, gritty, and in your face.

You know all the ways you can kill a girl?
God, there are so many.


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It’s no secret that this woman snuck up out of nowhere and stole my heart with her magnificent and flawless writing. I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, when I pick up a Summers book (anyone keeping a count of how many times I’ll say her name?) that I will be transported to another world where someone doesn’t have it as good as me. That I will not be the same after reading it. That I will never find an author who speaks to me on such a deep emotional level. That, during the story, I will learn something not only about a flawed, broken girl (or boy), but also about myself. Her novels aren’t simply page-turners, though they are undoubtedly that, they mean something. They make you wonder, they make you think, “Was I ever so blind to something like this?” “Was I as care-free and oblivious and go-with-the-flow that I was a part of someone’s torment without even knowing it?” And that’s what Courtney Summers does-she doesn’t simply write-she educates. She makes you aware. And this story was no exception.

It’s amazing how bad you can make the truth sound. As long as you keep it partially recognizable when you spit it out, a crowd will eat it up without even thinking about how hard you chewed on it first.

Romy is a whole new level of broken. In Summers’s previous works, we see lots of broken girls who don’t quite know how to handle what they’re going through, what they feel. I mean, they think they do…but do they ever really want to do what they think they need to do? Anyway-I digress. My point was that Romy is emotionally broken in a way that, while familiar from her other stories, I have never seen before. It’s not like she lays down and takes it. She doesn’t simply play dead and walk through the halls like a zombie. She has a bite that is unlike anything I’ve seen. It was deliciously depraved, some of things she had to do, but it was never over the top. This girl is someone who was bullied for speaking out against a rape no one believes happened, bullied for simply existing, bullied because she had the misfortune of being the only girl ‘found.’ The things she had to hear whispered behind her back and go through were unwarranted, nasty, and catalyst to thoughts that a girl should never have about herself…or anyone, for that matter.

I forget what I was doing. I forget what I’m here for. There’s a point to all of this but I don’t know what it is anymore.

What we see, essentially, is a girl who has been backed into a corner and can as easily be discarded as a piece of paper. No one looks out for her, no one will save her…she has to be there for herself-at school, that is. Outside of school we get to see the love that her mother and her mother’s boyfriend have for her, how they worry and would do anything for her. It’s not simply a case of blind parenting-they do their best to figure out what’s going on and they don’t clam up. They continually ask her why she’s acting this way, why she is running off, why she started a fight at school…it was heartwarming and broke my heart when they realized they couldn’t do anything to help if she wasn’t willing to open up. Because not only does everyone in the school hate Romy Grey….everyone in town despises her as well.


Why her?


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And finally there’s Leon. The guy she works with. The guy who’s above pettiness and high school games and wants to make a name for himself. The guy who would do almost anything for Romy…even after she rips his heart out time and again. He only has eyes for her, but he certainly doesn’t take her bull shit. He tells her like it is and he makes her a better person. I loved their relationship and thought it was adorable watching a new romance bloom after the wake of a tragedy, watching the struggle to keep her ‘good side.’ Okay, I lied. I don’t suppose it was adorable so much as uplifting….and heartbreaking. My soul was ripped in two more than once, longing for the perfect relationship, the perfect end to their (Romy’s) tremulous journey. But that’s Summers and she doesn’t sugar coat life. Things happen. It’s how you handle life’s hurdles that makes you who you are. If you can’t get past it? That’s your own hang up. And that’s what we get to see.

I don’t believe in forgiveness. I think if you hurt someone, it becomes a part of you both. Each of you just has to live with it and the person you hurt gets to decide if they want to give you the chance to do it again.

Suited in her battle armor to take on any day and each new event in life, I loved Romy to pieces. She was fierce, determined, but fractured into pieces and unable to feel complete and like a real, whole person. Her bad ass battle armor was a farce for what she really feels on the inside: dull, lifeless, and hurt. Watching her fight her internal battles and take on one snobby bitch or asshole, one at a time, whenever she felt like it, we saw the fight that has long since extinguished since ‘that night.’ I hope everyone can find something to love about this story, because I was undeniably hooked and wanted nothing more than to read about Romy’s happy ending. I hope you will, too.

…how do you get a girl to stop crying?
You cover her mouth.

 

 

*whines* And Courtneyyyyyy…..release another boooook….pleasseeeeee.

 

 

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AGHHH!!!! It’s LIVE!! FINALLY. *Rubs hands together* I shall start reading under my desk now-lol

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I’m going through serious, SERIOUS Courtney Summers withdrawl. It’s like I am starting to itch and I need that next fix immediately and I can’t seem to find any books that scratch that infernal itch and…

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Soon. April can’t make it soon enough.

Dying.

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