I read this book for the first time last year and…it hit me, hard. It was one of those books that you don’t expect a lot from, but then you read the last sentence and realize that your heart has just been on this amazing, emotional journey that you never thought was possible.
Buying this novel at Barnes and Noble was completely spontaneous. I’d never heard of it before that day and I only knew what the back cover synopsis told me. I didn’t know if the content was super clean and it was a risky purchase. But something inside of me was screaming that I should buy it…so I did.
And now, a year later, I can still confidently tell you that this was, by far, my best spontaneous book purchase to date.
If you could choose one person to bring back to life, who would it be?
Seventeen-year-old Lake Devaraux is the survivor of a car crash that killed her best friend and boyfriend. Now she faces an impossible choice. Resurrection technology changed the world, but strict laws allow just one resurrection per citizen, to be used on your eighteenth birthday or lost forever.
You only have days to decide.
For each grieving family, Lake is the best chance to bring back their child.
For Lake, it’s the only way to reclaim a piece of happiness after her own family fell apart.
And Lake must also grapple with a secret – and illegal – vow she made years ago to resurrect someone else. Someone who’s not even dead yet.
Who do you need most?
As Lake’s eighteenth birthday nears, secrets and betrayals new and old threaten to eclipse her cherished memories. Lake has one chance to save a life…but can she live with her choice?
This contemporary, coming of age novel is a tough little cookie. It hits on some mature, deep themes (as seen in the blurb) and it really doesn’t shy away from making the reader ask some tough, oftentimes moral questions. Chandler Baker does a phenomenal job of crafting a thrilling and engaging story that YA readers will devour within a couple of reading sessions.
Overall, it’s an easy book to read and it’s very well-written, which is refreshing for those of us who struggle to get through poorly-written novels.
What I Liked
-Lake was a fantastic protagonist. The way she struggles throughout the story is so realistic. One of my favorite parts about her character arc is that she often questions things in her head that I, the reader, am also asking simultaneously. I think this is a genius way to make odd or unexpected things feel super realistic because it goes beyond just engaging the reader…it literally makes the reader feel like they are the main character.
-RINGO ❤ ❤ ❤ He’s my little cinnamon roll and nobody is allowed to touch him because he’s mine.
-All the music references. It makes everything better and I even made a playlist that includes all the songs referenced. You can find it right here, so definitely listen to that while you read, it will 10/10 improve the reading experience.
-The plot twist. I so didn’t see it coming, which is surprising cause I can usual tell where things are going. But with this one, I was totally blindsided in the best way possible.
What I Didn’t Like
-There was a bit more language than I would have liked. (See content review below.)
-There’s really nothing else to dislike about this book. It’s basically perfect, you guys. That, or I just can’t remember what I disliked about it.
Profanity: Three f-bombs, multiple b***s***, multiple a**h*****, multiple s***, and probably other, milder swearing
Disturbing: A “death party” scene; three friends perform a “blood promise” in which they all slice their hand and let their blood drop to the ground where it mixes all three of their blood types. (Note: they do not touch their wounds to each other.)
Sexual: Some suggestive comments; a boy sits in a suggestive pose (not explicit); a scene where a girl remembers when she had sex with her boyfriend, but nothing overtly sexual is mentioned (at one point he unzips the back of her dress); a boy asks his sister what it’s like to have sex (not overtly descriptive, but she does say it hurt a little, in the beginning); a boy kisses a girl and she moans; one kiss that involves tongue; two side characters are in a gay relationship (it’s mentioned in passing that they are sitting next to each other and are sharing earbuds).
Substance Abuse: It’s mentioned that a girl and her best friend tried pot once (not descriptive); a scene of partying and drinking (one character describes the beer as tasting like “horse p***”); a character drinks vodka and gets a hangover (drinking is not glorified).
The Star Rating
I really liked this book. It had everything that I love in a story and the author did a fabulous job of wrapping everything up at the end. Sure, there are still some things that are left unsaid, but for this story, that kind of ending really works. It leaves you feeling peaceful and hopeful, all while encouraging you to think long after you finish the last page.
That being said, I proudly award this novel….
Have you read This is Not The End? What was your favorite part? If you haven’t read it, you totally should! But are you willing to add one more novel to your already gigantic TBR? *wink*
Also, I just wanted to let you guys know that going into August, my blog schedule is changing. I will no longer be posting every Saturday. Instead, I will be posting every other Saturday (so roughly two posts a month). I’ve been thinking about this for awhile and I truly believe this is gonna be a good change. It will free up my time for IRL responsibilities, as well as allow me to dive even deeper into my blog posts, cause there will only be two of them a month.
I appreciate each and every one of my voyagers and I cannot wait to create more content for you guys. So I hope you guys continue to stick around, cause the journey’s only just begun. 😉
Now go write because there’s only five days left of Camp NaNo!! *tosses you chocolate and waffles for motivation*