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Broken things, broken friendship, broken people...

August 22, 2016

Title: Beautiful Broken Things
Author: Sara Barnard
Publisher: Macmillan Children's Books
Release date: February 25th 2016
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I didn't dislike this book, I was simply expecting more from it.

I was so excited to read a story that focused on friendships instead of romantic relationships but unfortunately, I was let down. Beautiful Broken Things had a lot of potential, but I disliked every characters. Every single one of them.

The main character, Caddy, wasn't well developed. As a secondary character, or if the story had been told in third person point of view, maybe her arc would've made more sense, but it wasn't the case. The story starts and the reader is introduced to a girl who doesn't like parties and prefers to keep her best friend to herself. By the end of the story, that girl has transformed into someone who's been going to parties since she was thirteen, who sneaks out her window at night and goes on an impromptu adventure to another city.
Transformation and development in characters can be great; in fact, static MCs can get quite boring or annoying. In Beautiful Broken Things I didn't feel like Caddy was evolving, more like halfway through the book, she suddenly and magically became another person.

Then there is Rosie, Caddy's best friend.
I'm a proud advocate that you shouldn't sugarcoat things with your best friends. As such, it's your duty to tell your friend that something she or he is doing is ridiculous. This being said, being honest and straight forward can be achieved without being a total bitch about it. Clearly, Rosie didn't get the memo.
I couldn't believe how mean and insensitive she was at time! With her best friend! I know teenagers can be mean, but come one, there's a limit to how awful you can be to a friend!

Finally, there's is fun, charming, confident Suzanne. Except that's pretty much an act to cover up how "damaged" (quoting the book here) she is after being abused by her father.
I guess I didn't exactly have a problem with Suzanne. I can imagine that after being abused, you would try your best to get passed it. Fake it till you make it, isn't that what they say?
With her, I was frustrated because she refused to help herself. Now, before people start freaking out, I know. I know it's never as easy as it seems. I've never been there, I can't pass judgment. Where I have been is in the role of a friend trying to help another friend out without success. Here's the deal, if you have a problem, I'll try to help you as best as I can. I'll make as many suggestions as I can think of. If I run out of ideas and you're still not doing anything to help yourself, then I'm wasting my time and energy.

Don't get me wrong, Beautiful Broken Things wasn't horrible, far from it! There was some pretty great scenes and some kick ass quotes! But this book is very character and relationship driven. Unfortunately, I wasn't all that jazzed by the characters and had trouble investing myself in their relationships.

Beautiful Broken Things had some very good elements, but over all, it didn't live up to my expectation.