I'm a junkie for young adult books - seriously. There's just something about YA fiction that I find a lot more inspiring and uplifting than traditional adult fiction - and I love when I finish a book that's really had some sort of impact on my life, because I find it really amazing that it'll likely do that for someone younger than me that might really need it; and Severed Heads, Broken Hearts was the perfect example of this in my opinion. Robyn Schneider's novel tackles the idea that, at some point in every person's life, there will be an event that will change your life irreparably without you getting a say - and it's a beautiful, life affirming sort of read.
I like to read books that I can take something away from, and this was definitely one of those books - I felt like I put it down feeling as though, no matter how bad you feel, or how awful things can seem, everything will turn on it's axis and change and improve. The book follows the life of Ezra, whose life is turned on it's head at the age of 17 when he has to give up his dream of playing tennis professionally due to a car accident that fractures his knee. As he loses the friends that he had before, we see him fall back in with an old friend, Toby (whose life changing moment was catching a severed head on a Disneyland ride as a child), and we see their lives mould and change under the weight of irreparable change.
Add into the mix a pretty redhead called Cassidy, some questioning of sexuality and just the right amount of drunkenness and teenage rebellion and you've got the perfect mix for a book. Critics have compared this to offerings from John Green, which I completely understand, but in the same way, it's reassuring and beautifully written and a book that won't just be enjoyed, but one that you'll learn something from too. Like John Green - I can see Schneider easily making herself a household name - and this book really deserves every slither of recognition that it gets.
All in all, this is one for when you're feeling a little low, and you're not sure what's happening with your life. It's calming and beautiful and it's a book that you'll want to pass on to your friends and family. This is one I'd say needs to be on your to-read list and I can't wait to see what other offerings I can uncover from Robyn Schneider.
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