Rating : ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Waverly is perfect to the point of being cold and robotic, near the top of the food chain at school and almost untouchable. Though underneath she can’t sleep and barely feels like she’s part of the waking world, trading rest for nightly runs until her feet blister and bleed. The moments she allows herself rest, she’s transported to his room, Marshall Holt, the school burnout and someone that shouldn’t even be on her radar.
Marshall is self destructing in another way, but along side Waverly. They find solace with each other in the dead of night and pass each other in the halls like strangers when the sun comes up. Charged and alive for once they are poised to crash into each other or break apart.
The timeline goes as follows. Yesterday evening my cousin sends me a DM on twitter linking me to a video where a booktuber, Snow White Reader, reads books recommended by Maggie Stiefvater, one of my favorite authors. I literally say “Oh shit.” to my confused boyfriend and his best friend and watch the video. Then later I see a video of BooksandLala reading a book that I had seen in Snow White Reader’s video. By midnight I had it checked out on Libby and started reading so engrossed in the prose and characters that I had a restless night like Waverly.
To say that this book came to me at the right time is an understatement, it really feels like something akin to The Raven Boys, something raw and personal that is a key that fits in a lock I didn’t know I had. I related to both Waverly and Marshall in many different ways, I am a mixture of both deep down. I spent most of my high school life fitting in and wearing a mask similar to Waverly so I get it. I know she’s seen as kind of a sociopath, but I also see her as someone who is so withdrawn into herself that she loses perspective and sense of self to the point of being numb.
I described the vibe to my boyfriend as haunting, like a high school thriller like Jawbreaker without the murder. Just the tension and how everyone is pulled so taut that you feel something could snap and explode at any moment. I also really enjoyed the dreamlike quality of it even if at times it was a bit off-putting in it’s accuracy.
So happy that I picked this up and devoured it. I already ordered my own copy and I might actually read it again when it comes. It was an amazing experience and it’s one of those reads where you will get something different from it the second time, I’m almost sure of it. I can’t wait to read more of Brenna’s work.