Friday, March 13, 2015

If I Lie

Posted by A Drop of Romeo at 2:00 PM

Age: Young Adult
Category: Contemporary; romance
Rating: 5 stars

Rosie Thinks: Wow. This story just brought up so many emotions in me, it was ridiculous. If I had to describe it in two words, it would be beautifully heartbreaking. This is the author's debut, and I think she's done a spectacular job with it! It follows the powerful story of Sophie Topper Quinn, who is caught kissing a guy who is not her MIA marine boyfriend, Carey - a big no-no in a small town that is incredibly military-centric. She is completely ostracised from everyone, including her old friends and even her father, only finding comfort in time spent with George, an old veteran. The main stickler is that she didn't really cheat on Carey, but the only way to clear her name would be to break a promise and reveal a truth about Carey that would tear him apart. And so begins Quinn's intense journey of heartbreak, desperation and grief, to try to create a life and find herself.

I absolutely adore the trope of keeping a secret and sticking fast to your ideals, no matter how much everyone else misconstrues you - and this is exactly what Quinn did. The novel explored the murky grey area between truth and lies, and how much one person can take before breaking.

The emotions in this story were captured brilliantly. I'm going to come right out and say it - I cried many, many times during it. Jackson's writing just had me so hooked into the plot that I couldn't come up for air. Quinn's loyalty and struggle earned her a place in my heart, and I truly empathise with her. And speaking of crying - George has to be one of my absolute favourite characters of all time. He wasn't your stereotypical old guy that you see appear in cliches every so often - he was just incredible. He believed in Quinn when no one else did, and he was a pillar of quiet strength to her when she'd been abandoned by everyone else. So not only is Jackson fantastic at creating non-cliche characters, but her writing is well thought-out and has a way of cutting you deep and leaving you open to the emotions she's trying to convey. One of my favourite quotes is this one:

"Some words hit you like a tree branch slapping you in the face. And some words rip into your flesh, leaving scars so deep, they never completely fade."

The ending was very open-ended, but I liked how everything wasn't wrapped up in a neat, cliche package like so many other romances. I generally can't stand endings that aren't properly concluded, but this definitely suited the novel and left me satisfied with a clear view of where it'll probably go.

All in all, I'm definitely going to be checking out Jackson's other stories. If you're looking for an emotionally-charged, intense novel, search no further.


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