History is All You Left Me – Book Review

History is All You Left Me

By Adam Silvera

 

Details:

Title: History is All You Left Me

Author: Adam Silvera

Page Count: 320

Publisher: SOHO Teen

Publication Date: January 17th, 2017

 

 

 
Synopsis:  

When Griffin’s first love and ex-boyfriend, Theo, dies in a drowning accident, his universe implodes. Even though Theo had moved to California for college and started seeing Jackson, Griffin never doubted Theo would come back to him when the time was right. But now, the future he’s been imagining for himself has gone far off course.

To make things worse, the only person who truly understands his heartache is Jackson. But no matter how much they open up to each other, Griffin’s downward spiral continues. He’s losing himself in his obsessive compulsions and destructive choices, and the secrets he’s been keeping are tearing him apart.

If Griffin is ever to rebuild his future, he must first confront his history, every last heartbreaking piece in the puzzle of his life (Goodreads Summary).

My Review:  

           Before reading History is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera, I didn’t understand why people enjoy reading books despite knowing they’re sad, but I leave this novel with a whole new perspective.

History is All You Left Me is such beautifully tragic story…and I’m pretty sure it gave me emotional whiplash; I’d go from crying, to laughing, to crying again in a matter of seconds. Silvera does such a fantastic job in using his characters to further the emotions and the narrative of the story, and although the story is meant to be all of the character’s ‘histories,’ I can feel and hear Silvera’s voice through the pages, leading me to believe this story is more personal than he’s letting on.

The characters themselves are real and raw and unafraid to flaunt their flaws. I found myself loving Griffen, Theo, Wade, and Jackson by the end. The main protagonist, Griffen, took me a while to warm up to due to some rather interesting choices he makes, but I ultimately enjoyed how vulnerable he is, and how the entire story is told through his ‘histories’ of his now deceased first love, Theo, and how he is ‘today.’ Silvera writes him as depressed as well as gives him a few little quirks like slight OCD that really make his character all the more real for the reader. Theo is the kind of character that I still have so many questions about despite the story being over because we only learn about him through others’ experiences, and I can’t tell if I enjoy that or not. He’s described as very geeky and the perfect complement, but I can’t help but feel like there’s something important about him that we still don’t know, I felt Jackson is a very interesting character being Theo’s most recent boyfriend, and think he played a big roll in pushing the story forward. Lastly,  Wade is a complete and utter cinnamon bun. He’s not the most important character, but he’s still necessary to the story, and I love how he is so caring and patient and accepting of the fact that his two best friends are in love with each other. History is truly a character driven story at its core, and  I highly doubt it would have come across as impeccably as it does without such string, well written characters.

What I believe truly sets History is All You Left Me apart from other contemporaries is that it’s such a wonderful representation of the LGBT community and it deals with grief in such a unique and interesting way. It doesn’t play to any stereotypes or feel forced, which helps readers outside of the community understand and develop there own feelings. In terms of grief, most contemporaries like to keep a lighthearted feeling thought a novel, but Silvera is unafraid to dive deep and make the reader hurt. I just found History to be such a unique and delightful change from normal contemporaries, and am glad to have finally read it.

In conclusion, I give History is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera four out of five stars for being beautifully written, unafraid to test the boundaries of YA contemporaries, and a wonderful representation of the LGBT community. I highly recommend it to anyone looking for a diverse read or anyone who’s looking to have a good, ugly cry.

If you would like to purchase History is All You Left Me

Book Depository

Barnes and Nobles

Amazon

-CG

7 thoughts on “History is All You Left Me – Book Review

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