Tuesday, February 9, 2010

The Way He Lived by Emily Wing Smith

Joel Espen could never be who he really was in the small town of Haven. Still, there was always something different about him. Sixteen  years old. Green eyes that could see right into your heart. A selfless need to save people. Even the way he died reflected the way he lived: helping others. But how are you supposed to just go on living like normal after suddenly losing your brother.... your best friend.... your first love? As the six teens who were closest to Joel try to find the meaning behind his death, they begin to realize that tragedy can sometimes set you free--by revealing who you truly are.
I'm not really sure what to think of this book exactly. I can't really say I enjoyed it very much frankly because I am still trying to figure out what the point of the story was. Sure Joel's death did change some of people in the book, but there wasn't enough of plot to make the story very meaningful.
There are six different parts to the book in which six different characters talk about their lives before and after Joel's death. I think my favorite characters were Tabbatha and maybe Claire. Of course, those were the two characters who changed the most because they were Joel's sisters. The other characters were friends who knew Joel and their stories really didn't get anywhere. I guess--what it comes down to is that the book was just a collection of fictional memoirs about grief and a boy named Joel.
Like I said before, I am not 100% sure what I think about The Way He Lived other than it was pointless in way; what I do feel good about is the cover. Simple, sweet, and sad (Flux always does a great job). Another thing that kinda of bothered me was that I kept getting the impression that Joel was gay but he wasn't. Anyway, if you think you want to read this, be my guest you might like it, but to me it is not an absolute must-read.
|Pages: 222|Year Published: 2008|Publisher: Flux|
|Genre: Contemporary fiction, grief|
|Age Group: YA, ages 13+||Buy or Borrow? Borrow|
|Content: Some language, sexuality, references to Mormonism|
|Enjoyed It: 3/5|Content Rating: 4/5|Cover: 4/5|



Cindy said...

this sounds like something i would enjoy :) thanks for your honest review!

ParallelogramPrincess said...

Sounds similar to 13 Reasons Why, but not quite as depressing. Hmmm... I should look into it. :)

Unknown said...

Hmmm...I'm not sure that I'd want to read this. Interesting and thoughtful review though.

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