Poignant and Heartbreaking
If someone asked now, “What does love look like?” I’d tell them it was the lies in your eyes.
Books centred on tragedies usually fall in one of three categories for me – either the fall completely flat, or they leave me curled up in under my blanket sobbing my eyes out or they devastate me, and still leave me with hope.
The Beauty That Remains definitely left me in the last category. Ashley Woodfolk’s deep and haunting debut novel reminded me of Adam Silvera’s writing, along with one of my favourite elements in books (that we rarely see) – music – and I fell in love with it.
1. I love way this book was told. We had three narrators, and some incredibly developed secondary characters, each of whom were experiencing the devastating loss of a friend, ex or sister and it was their journey to reaching some kind of acceptance, through music.
2. I struggled to keep up with all the characters in the beginning of this book. All of them were equally important from each narrator, to the person they each lost, to their support systems, but THERE WERE TOO MANY PEOPLE thrown at me in the beginning.
3. Ashley Woodfolk’s writing was spectacular. It was slow paced, but really dove into the unbearable grief each teenager felt. It was heart-breaking, poignant and I am A HUGE FAN.
4. The cast was diverse and inclusive and I LOVED IT. Just off the top of my head, we had Asian rep, Hispanic rep and Gay rep and it dealt with depression, coping mechanisms, therapy and panic attacks with such finesse.
5. I honestly connected with Logan and Bram’s story right from the get go, and I was desperately craving more.
6. The only reason this book isn’t receiving a five star rating from me was that there was no definitive ending. I understand that you never truly finish grieving, but this book felt unfinished in a way I can’t fully explain.
A spectacularly written book on loss that will make you feel. 4 stars.