Saturday, July 26, 2014

Review: The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen

Book Title: The Truth About Forever
Author: Sarah Dessen
Publisher: Penguin Group
Published Date: May 11th, 2004
Genre: YA Contemporary
Book Link: Goodreads
Purchase Links: AmazonBarnes & Noble

Synopsis from Goodreads:
A long, hot summer...

That's what Macy has to look forward to while her boyfriend, Jason, is away at Brain Camp. Days will be spent at a boring job in the library, evenings will be filled with vocabulary drills for the SATs, and spare time will be passed with her mother, the two of them sharing a silent grief at the traumatic loss of Macy's father.

But sometimes, unexpected things can happen—things such as the catering job at Wish, with its fun-loving, chaotic crew. Or her sister's project of renovating the neglected beach house, awakening long-buried memories. Things such as meeting Wes, a boy with a past, a taste for Truth-telling, and an amazing artistic talent, the kind of boy who could turn any girl's world upside down. As Macy ventures out of her shell, she begins to wonder, Is it really better to be safe than sorry?

Disclaimer: This book is a library book.

What a huge disappointment this book turned out to be for me. I know I am definitely in the minority with this book, but I could not get into it at all. I struggled pretty much the whole way through. Macy is considered a "good girl" she is smart, spends her summer evenings prepping for the SAT's and has a "perfect" boyfriend who expects her to be perfect as well. See, right there I would have had an issue. 

Macy's boyfriend Jason was awful. When she tried to express her feelings for him, he called her clingy and didn't want anything to do with her. Plus he was BORING. Holy moly, he acted like a 40 year old businessman instead of a kind teenager with a good heart. Macy hasn't known any different and it takes her several weeks after Jason departs for Brain Camp, for her to realize that Jason never made her feel good about herself. 

In fact, he was constantly critical of her. In the letters he sent her in the beginning, he criticized her for not being devoted enough to a library job, the letters he wrote to her included reminders of things she needed to keep on top of at the library. He basically treated her like crap and Macy simply thought "I know how he feels about me." She was brainwashed into thinking that this relationship and the way Jason was treating her, was okay.

The parts about the catering were at least mildly interesting, but the character development definitely lacked. No one really grew, there wasn't any intriguing story arcs. Wes, was boring too, but at least he was a decent individual whose goals didn't stop him from being a good person and a friend to those who needed him.

I think a lot more could have been done with Macy's grief and how she dealt with it. I felt that storyline wasn't as present as I was hoping it was. It could have made for a very emotional book, and that would have vastly improved the book. I don't think the author went for it as well as she could have.

The book itself was very slow and I am really not a fan of books that are this slow. That coupled with the lackluster character development and the boring-ness of Macy & Wes' relationship forces me to give the book 2 stars. I am really bummed about it, but this book just didn't work for me. I definitely seem to be in the minority, so definitely give it a try.

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