The Way I Used To Be by Amber Smith
Genre: Contemporary, Abuse
Synopsis: Eden was always good at being good. Starting high school didn’t change who she was. But the night her brother’s best friend rapes her, Eden’s world capsizes.
What was once simple, is now complex. What Eden once loved—who she once loved—she now hates. What she thought she knew to be true, is now lies. Nothing makes sense anymore, and she knows she’s supposed to tell someone what happened but she can’t. So she buries it instead. And she buries the way she used to be.
Told in four parts—freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior year—this provocative debut reveals the deep cuts of trauma. But it also demonstrates one young woman’s strength as she navigates the disappointment and unbearable pains of adolescence, of first love and first heartbreak, of friendships broken and rebuilt, and while learning to embrace a power of survival she never knew she had hidden within her heart.
I’ve been wanting to read this book for the longest time. Whenever I went to Barnes & Noble, the book was there. I finally got to read it during my family road trip to Reno, Nevada. Half of the book was spent reading in the car. The other half was spent during any free time I had. This included waiting for a pizza order at a pub, in our hotel room during breakfast, and at the Circus Circus hotel when my brother was playing arcade games.
I thought it was going to be another favorite book of mine because the synopsis made it sound contemplative. My favorite book is Thirtern Reasons Why; the book is contemplative and it has a serious issue involved.
After and when I read the book, it was evident that Eden changed throughout high school. I could’ve been friends with her when she was a freshman. Book club buddies!
After Eden was a freshman, I was disgusted and frustrated with her. I didn’t like how she disconnected. I’ve read a lot about it, but I really liked her first boyfriend and she was an innnocent, sweet kid. Her way of communication, or lack of it, frustrated me. I wanted her to just get her true feelings out.
I’m going to spoil the name of Eden’s first boyfriend, okay? He’s so likable and handsome! I really liked their meet-cute. His name is Joshua Miller. I can’t gush about him too much because there’s someone at my school with the same name 😦 Josh would definitely be my favorite character in the story.
I recommend this book because it touches a serious issue. There are some people’s stories you should know about; Eden’s should be one of them.