Read Rage: A Love Story by Julie Anne Peters Online

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A National Book Award Finalist offers an intense portrait of an abusive relationship.Johanna is steadfast, patient, reliable; the go-to girl, the one everyone can count on. But always being there for others can’t give Johanna everything she needs—it can’t give her Reeve Hartt.Reeve is fierce, beautiful, wounded, elusive; a flame that draws Johanna’s fluttering moth. JohannA National Book Award Finalist offers an intense portrait of an abusive relationship.Johanna is steadfast, patient, reliable; the go-to girl, the one everyone can count on. But always being there for others can’t give Johanna everything she needs—it can’t give her Reeve Hartt.Reeve is fierce, beautiful, wounded, elusive; a flame that draws Johanna’s fluttering moth. Johanna is determined to get her, against all advice, and to help her, against all reason. But love isn’t always reasonable, right?In the precarious place where attraction and need collide, a teenager experiences the dark side of a first love, and struggles to find her way into a new light.From the Hardcover edition....

Title : Rage: A Love Story
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780375844119
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 304 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Rage: A Love Story Reviews

  • April
    2018-10-21 15:12

    It wasn't so much that reading this was painful for me, it was the fact that it seemed like such a rough, tiring journey for nothing. I'll quote Ketchum: '...despite Rage being a painfully realistic portrayal of abuse, and the darker side of LGBT culture, this book left me with a bad taste in my mouth.' It's the same thoughts I felt after the novels completion. The premise is already thick with deleterious possibilities: a compassionate 18-year-old Johanna, besieged by tragedies of loss and wavering relationships, falls for the already hazardous personality of Reeve Hartt, the perturbing elder of the autistic boy 'Robbie' whom Johanna is helping graduate. Johanna has always idolised Reeve from the beginning, discerning that Reeve is her destiny, frequently taking us readers into her fantasy realm named 'Joyland': somewhat lucid dreams in which primarily blissful events transpire concerning Johanna's ill-suited longing for Reeve. Thrown in with this are drifting characters that assume some part in the story, Johanna's constantly-varying-role-as-best-friend Novak, her distant and tragic sister Tessa (accompanied by her husband Martin) and various other personalities that hover here and there. Now, all credibility to Peters for writing about abusive relationships in women. That is an admirable thing and something that should be made aware of in modern society; it's not always men who are the culprits of abuse. So kudos, Peters, kudos. HOWEVER, that in itself doesn't make this novel interesting enough to read. I get it, it's a poignant tale that involves broken characters and a sorrowful storyline. Written beautifully it might have been a heartfelt novel, but the colloquialism was off putting for me. I thought some ‘takes’ of Joyland were depicted ethereally with captivating abilities, but that was as far as it went for me personally.On the other hand, going back to the theme of abuse;‘By afternoon, the bruising has spread down my whole left cheek. It symbolizes something – trust? Intimacy? You can trust me to take what you dole out, Reeve. I gaze into the mirror and think This is a phase of our love. We’re taking it to the next level.’ I immediately awarded a star to this book just for that small passage. In all its aberrancy, disgust and mere foolery, it’s one of the most poignant perspectives of someone in an abusive relationship (in my opinion). It didn’t – of course – justify why she was going through it, but it certainly gave some sort of explanation as to why she was enduring the constant violence. Now arguably the most basic of points that irked me was the relationship. Somehow, through some bizarre, unexplained manner, Johanna has become almost ensconced by Reeve’s presence and seems to rapidly yearn for her comfort, which we are forced to accept almost immediately (though no explanation is given). Now, Reeve falling for Johanna is something that we as readers transcend yet can’t possibly understand. Or at least, for me I couldn’t. Whether or not it was – from the beginning – plainly manipulative on Reeve’s part, or some other sort of overpowering desire to dominate a weaker being is unknown, but regardless, it seemed overly brash and hurriedly fashioned. So alright, not very realistic – we can go with that. Henceforth, why didn’t we, as readers, deserve an outrageously dramatic, unbelievable ending concerning Johanna's and Reeve's relationship? Quoting Ketchum again, it ‘left me with a bitter aftertaste’ because the ending was (for me) so lukewarm and vague. Is Johanna’s harrowing endurance doomed to accompany her for many years to come, spanning from her desire to be near Reeve? Or have we seen some sort of passive resistance, an epiphany of the prior ludicrousness she let herself be put through? Truth is, we’re left unsure. We don’t know, and the truthfully, I myself wasn’t that particularly interested in finding out anyway. In full: not my cup of tea. Alright in some parts, little bit of drama here and there, a few interesting characters (I'd analyse Reeve's personality to death) but not something I'll likely read again. My rating stands at 2.

  • Melissa
    2018-10-15 17:07

    Originally posted at Sweet Treats & Thrilling TalesI can’t lie. Rage is a very difficult book to read. It would be difficult for anyone to read even if they haven’t been in any sort of an abusive relationship. But for someone who has been in an abusive relationship, it’s extremely difficult. However, Julie Anne Peters writes with such a poetic grace that you cannot help but be sucked in.Reeve is probably the most realistic character of the book. Her pain is real and obvious. She hates what she does to Johanna and yet, she doesn’t know how to control herself. She very much loves her twin brother Reeve and protects him as much as she possibly can. She can be selfish and yet at the same time she can be extremely unselfish. And that shows in every scene that she’s in with her brother.Johanna has had an extremely difficult life. From the loss of both parents to the fact that her older sister (whom she adores) appears to have not been able to accept her sexuality to her relationship with Reeve. As much as I wanted to like her, I had a really hard time doing so. Johanna is basically a doormat. She pretty much lets everyone walk all over her. For most of the book, I found myself wishing that she would finally grow a backbone and tell everyone off.That was my one major issue with this book, and with abuse books in general. Just because someone has become a victim of abuse does not mean that they have to stay a victim. Just once, I’d love to read a book where the victim fights back and does not succumb to the victim syndrome. It is in fact possible to remain strong after being a victim and that is also important. And personally, I think if Johanna hadn’t been such a victim, the book would have ended better. All in all though, Johanna is still a very believable character. Her reactions and fears are very common. So many women (and men) deny that there is a problem or will wait for their abusive partner to change, only to discover that that change will never come.But despite my two cents on how I wish Johanna had been, I still recommend this book. Books about domestic violence are rare. Especially the domestic violence that occurs within a same sex relationship and I applaud Peters for writing a very real book about a very real topic.

  • elissa
    2018-09-23 17:17

    Took me almost 2 mos to read this, not because I didn't like it, but because the abuse was hard to read about, so I could only take it in small doses. That speaks to the powerful writing here. The ending was very strong and realistic, so I'm glad that I stuck with it, as it was worth it. The characters were all likeable, including the abusive girlfriend. It was very easy to believe that they would all behave the way that they did. First love can be very complicated (or any love, really). Probably 3 1/2 stars, since it took me so long, but I'm rounding up because of the ending. Maybe the best written Peters novel that I've read. Great cover, too!

  • Alicia
    2018-10-09 19:05

    This was a different kind of amazing-- it wasn't the writing but the shock value of the characters' plights. Johanna is living alone as a senior in high school after her father and mother have both passed away and her sister has chosen to unsupportingly move away with her husband. But everyone in the story is dealing with a loss. Tessa (Johanna's sister) has lost two unborn babies (and her parents). So, when Johanna meets Reeve and her autistic twin brother Robbie, her world becomes tumultuous to say the least. Reeve is abusive, but Johanna is so in love with her that she endures it. The entire story is one disturbing nightmare and you feel like yelling at Johanna and everyone else for their wise comments, their unemotional and sometimes too emotional responses to the situations, for their homophobia, for their disdain for human life. The book is loaded. The cover could convey the seriousness of the topics covered, but if it represents Reeve, it's almost a perfect kind of cover. I'm definitely recommending it.

  • Jillian Jayde Hastings
    2018-09-28 18:58

    I found myself incredibly disappointed in this book. The pacing and the plot were technically good but I found it to be rather predictable. I found mysrlf incapable of connecting to a single character and at times felt that the storyline and soul behind Johanna was rushed for the sake of length. Maybe I am desensitized from working with LGBTQ teens, some of which coping with abuse, but I didn't find the abuse scenes particularly difficult to read or insightful. All in all, I'd say it suceeds at being a "message novel" but the end is too wrapped up and "see! everyone discovered and acknowledged their faults and we're all OK now" ending that annoyed me.

  • Sarah {Literary Meanderings}
    2018-10-14 19:03

    Review soon

  • Robyn
    2018-10-08 22:17

    Rage: A Love Story, a rather misnomer in my opinion, but go ahead, I'll bite. Firstly, I would like to congratulate the author, Ms.Julie Anne Peters, her book is officially the shortest book I have ever read that took me 10 days to finish. *claps in mock enthusiasm*Honestly that is not a jab at her more so at me. There are very few books I have found in this world that make me so uncomfortable I literally cannot read them. So Bravo. Well written. (and that is complete honesty). On that same note, before we get into specifics I would like to mention one thing: This Book IS a trigger. And as such I believe it should come with a trigger warning, so that people who have dealt with abuse before can prepare themselves adequately. That being said, let's get to the good stuff shall we? This book was absolutely wonderful. It took a bit to get into, and it was a hard read, but in the end you will be glad you read it. The story follows Johanna Lynch, Senior in high school, Star-crossed lover, and oh, bonafied, true-to-the-bone Lesbian. The book begins with her obvious obsession of one the most popular (and damaged) girls in school, Reeve Hartt, and essentially the entire book is story of their relationship unfolding. Here's the catch. Where you start the book off thinking it's going to be just a normal find-your-one-true-love relationship story. It is not. It is a story of abuse, and hardship, and finding yourself among the ashes. It is a story on when the thing you hold most dear to you is the very thing that causes you the most pain. Drug abuse, Family abuse, relationship abuse, death, rape, murder, all in one book. (see why I mentioned the trigger warning?) This book is a veritable melting pot of horror.To be fair, I am going to enter this side note. This book was a difficult one for me too read, because, like millions of other teen girls and boys, I also suffered from extreme dating abuse. I try to be as non-biased as possible at times like these, but sometimes, I have very little respect for the character who reminds me of who I used to be, and it shows.) This book is a story of Love, and of redemption, but that doesn't mask the fact that one of the most prominent problems in teen society is also one of the most ignored. Dating violence is everywhere, and this book is even more eye-opening because it is a lesbian novel. It shows that dating violence doesn't just happen in heterosexual couples, where the male is violently abusing the female. Girls get violent too.In conclusion, I would like to say that, if you are like me, the moment you decide you like this book will be an hour after you finish reading it. When your disgust with the weakness Johanna shows against Reeve's violent actions abates, perhaps you will realize just how well-written and true to the bone this book is. It really speaks volumes if you care to listen. And this is me, and I am telling you to listen closely. Perhaps it will ring a bell for you too.

  • Bunker
    2018-10-01 21:21

    This tale of lesbian courtly love gone awry features Johanna, a reliable and compassionate eighteen-year-old whose life seems destined to be defined by loss, and Reeve, the young woman Johanna has fallen in love with from afar. Johanna has lost her mother and father, and her much older sister, Tessa, who has recently moved back home with her husband, has remained distant ever since Johanna revealed her sexuality. Assigned to tutor Reeve's twin brother, who is autistic and violent, Johanna slowly learns the truth about Reeve's home life, which is fraught with drug use and physical abuse. Wanting to save her from the atrocities of her life, Johanna is willing to give up everything for Reeve, including her dignity and self-respect. Everyone surrounding Johanna, including her best friend Novak and Reeve's ex-girlfriend Britt, attempt to save Johanna from becoming another victim in the abuse cycle. Reeve's violent tendencies are visible from the very beginning, but Johanna does not seem to care, as the allure of Reeve overpowers her better judgment. Reeve knows that she is abusive, and she questions Johanna for taking it without fighting back or extracting herself from the situation. The ending provides a disturbing quick fix to Reeve's circumstances and detracts from the rest of the narrative.While this book is engaging, the dynamic and attraction between Johanna and Reeve is an enigma. Johanna only seems interested in the physical aspects of Reeve, without considering the content of her character. However, same-sex dating violence and domestic abuse is sorely underrepresented in literature and Peters novel does begin to fill the void.

  • Melinda
    2018-09-25 17:58

    The first half was a little tiresome and hard to get into — the characters and storyline started fleshing out by the second half. (view spoiler)[Although the discussion of abuse in lesbian relationships is an important one, and I appreciated Julie Anne Peters's attempt to show how the abuser in this situation was a complex character with her own history of abuse, but her portrayal did not feel too realistic. The extent of abuse in Reeve's family was so extreme — culminating in her stepfather murdering her mother and brother — it was as if to say that anything less wouldn't constitute an abusive home, and the absolute lack of anger in Johanna, in response to Reeve abusing her, was hard to believe. The fact she would try to excuse the violence and manipulation and focus on how much she loved her, fine, but that she would never ever even blink, shout, cry? Not too realistic. It was also strange to me how quickly Reeve fell in "love" with a girl she had never talked to. I was also bothered by Johanna's best friend, Novak, who consistently referred to her as Lesbo, sexually harassed her, and was an all-around jerk to her, being presented as the "good friend" alternative to Reeve. (hide spoiler)]

  • Desiree
    2018-10-15 17:13

    I wanted to read this after reading Keeping You a Secret, but I was pretty disappointed. I was hoping for more interesting LGBTQ books but I wasn't a fan of this one. There were two main reasons that I didn't really like this book. One: It wasn't really what I was looking for, mostly regarding the ending. Two: The remarks the narrator had about Reeve's mentally challenged brother Robbie really bothered me a lot. My brother is autistic and in the beginning of the book the comments she made about him bothered me enough that I almost just tossed the book. Basically, I think that some people will enjoy this, but it definitely is not the book for me.

  • Sarah
    2018-10-19 16:04

    I really like the way JAP writes, but this plot just wasn't working for me as well as some of her others. She tackles young lesbian abusive relationships, which, oddly, there aren't many books about (ha), but I don't like the speed at which the characters are "in love". They hardly know each other and Johannah is saying I love you to Reeve 43 times.

  • Summer Munger
    2018-10-12 21:15

    It just felt pointless in the end, and in a very 'after school special' kind of way.

  • Sarah
    2018-09-25 15:08

    I really, really wanted to like this book (because I like J.A.P.) but in the end I just couldn't.I did like the Joyland scenes but everything else was either annoying or rubbed me the wrong way.That begins with Johanna's obsession with Reeve (why does she like/love her? Just because she's hot? I don't remember any other positive aspects of her.), the horrible treatment of Robbie (I wanted to throw the book across the room everytime Johanna thought something insulting about him) continues with Novak (a shitty friend) and ends with the worst moment in this entire book - when Johanna just leaves Novak lying on the ground when minutes before Reeve was kicking her in the face! And Novak was drunk!I didn't like a single character (well maybe Robbie and Martin were ok), they just annoyed me so much. They were also absolutely unrelatable.The topic (abuse in lgbt-relationships) has a lot of potential but it was squandered here. I do commend the effort to write a book about it and raising awareness. But in the end that's all I can do.

  • Ab
    2018-09-30 22:03

    The greatness of this book doesn't come particularly in the writing, or the plot -- the presentation of the characters, who they are, what they feel, all of that, is very real ... I feel like this book has successfully climbed out of the alluring mire of the "woe is I -- a gay teen in high school". This girl, Johanna, is gay. She knows it. She figured it out, it was maybe a tough thing to tell her family, etc., but she's past it, and still in high school. She's majorly crushing on another "out" gal, and there are many "out" girls at this school who just don't give a shit that heterosexuality is the high school norm, and no one really gives them shit for it. This book is about experiencing life and oneself as a person, and gay as positive, significant part of that person. While I wasn't such a huge fan of the day-dreamy bits, and didn't get the attraction going on between the characters, my kudos go to the book as a whole for the stuff I've mentioned. It's a step forward in YA glbt literature, in this gal's humble opinion.

  • Ricki
    2018-10-02 16:58

    I feel like this book took me for a roller-coaster ride. I was hooked and unable to put it down, but there were many aspects of the book that bothered me. Johanna is a fragile girl who falls for an abusive girl, Reeve. Reeve's twin brother has autism, and she comes from a home with a drug-addicted mother and abusive father. Johanna's sister doesn't seem to accept Johanna is gay, and she also is emotionally affected by her miscarriages. To add to all of this, Johanna's parents both died, and she is living alone. I feel like Julie Anne Peters tries to tackle too many issues in the book. Additionally, she adds a slightly unrealistic plot-twist that disappointed me. I'll admit, I was hooked to the book and couldn't stop reading, but I was a bit disappointed with some of the language of the book. There was a lot of over-the-top sexual content and very vulgar language that I felt was unnecessary. I love Julie Anne Peters, but this book wasn't my favorite.

  • Luna
    2018-10-22 18:16

    Hm okay so this brief review has some spoilers but not a lot.I guess this novel was kind of hard for me to read because it reminds me of me and my ex-gf. While she wasn't physically abusive to me, she intentionally hurt me with words. It was emotionally abusive, I guess you can say. Reeve reminds me of her. She's so torn and destroyed on the inside that she inflicts that same pain on other people. Violence is all she knows. While the story was good and kept a good pace, I found myself disliking some of the characters. I could also tell that the author had a hard time writing the story. However, I did like how the fantasy turned into reality and then into a nightmare; I think Julie did an excellent job capturing that emotion. I also hate the word 'feminazi', but I'm weird like that, it bothered me. All in all it was an engaging read and very deep.

  • Courtney
    2018-10-07 15:08

    Johanna only wants one thing - Reeve Hartt. Reeve consumes her thoughts, her dreams, her reason for living. With an intensity that borders obsession, Johanna makes it her mission to make Reeve hers before their senior year is over, which gives her approximately fourteen days. Through a twist of fate, the two girls are thrown together, and they ignite a passionate love affair that turns abusive. Throughout the novel, the reader experiences the emotional roller coaster of their turbulent relationship, and learns that the line between abuser and victim is blurred when everything hinges upon RAGE. Peters gives an honest view of an abusive relationship, and the manipulation and lies a victim tells herself to keep from facing the truth. Disturbing.

  • Jamie
    2018-10-02 15:11

    Johanna has a huge crush on Reeve, one which is based almost entirely in fantasy as opposed to reality. She also has lost both her parents and her older sister lives with her as a practically absentee guardian. Rather than feeling victimized by everything, Johanna tries to make things right with those who don't deserve it while ignoring those who need her, something that I found very realistic. The lesbian sex fantasies are quite spicy, and they also show the difference between your fantasy of someone and the day to day reality. I wish Reeve had been drawn as a more of a real girl to us (she hardly ever leaves object/plot status) but I do enjoy the way Julie Anne Peters consistently raises the bar of the teen lesbian genre.

  • Kobi
    2018-10-11 18:55

    I enjoyed this book a lot. Johanna Lynch is dependable, smart, and works hard for what she wants. But when she meets Reeve all the things she once was fly out the door. Reeve and her brother Robbie have always lived in awful circumstances, using mother and abusive father. Growing up like this has caused the two to have bad reputations and be somewhat violent. As much as Reeve protests Johanna still falls in love with her.I like that this book doesn't really dwell on what sexuality they are. There's not some big monumentous coming out moment, they are what they are. I did not like Johanna though, she just conformed too much to Reeve for my liking. Rage is a good story about love and how far you will go for that person.

  • Staci
    2018-10-14 18:02

    I've read some of the author's other YA GLBT books(Luna, and Keeping You A Secret) and enjoyed them a lot more than I did this one. I was actually looking for a more developed relationship between the two girls. Because without that, the actual abuse that occurs doesn't totally ring true to me. Even though I was a bit let down I still think the author wrote about an important topic- Domestic violence. It occurs in all types of relationships: gay/lesbian, straight..violence knows no labels or sexual preference. I would recommend this to a young adult who is questioning whether or not their relationship with a significant other is healthy or not.

  • Morgan
    2018-10-01 18:05

    I read this book when I had just turned 14 years old (early 2011) and about to start high school in a few months. I didn't realize the relationship was abusive until the very end when it was pointed out because it was a girl being abusive; that hit me like a truck, and literally ruined my life for a few weeks. I feel like this book gave me a new outlook on abuse and abusive relationships while I was still very young and for that I have it four stars. Note: I do realize how ridiculous I sound about not realizing it was an abusive relationship, but I was very young and stupid therefore not realizing it was abuse.

  • usagi ☆ミ
    2018-09-23 21:16

    This book was very emotionally difficult to read. It deals with a serious issue within the gay community as a whole - domestic violence. Most outside of the community don't understand or believe that domestic violence doesn't happen (much) there, but it does. And this book boldly goes where not too many have gone before. Combine that with rising rates of teen domestic violence within relationships and you have an explosive story on your hands.But! Just because this book is painful to read doesn't mean it should not be read. It needs to be read. It screams to be read. We can't ignore this issue forever; whether in the gay community or not.

  • Chassity Oden
    2018-10-03 19:12

    i think that this book was really good i mean it was a little weird at the begging of the book because this girl watches this old man master bate to himself in his bed and then starts to cheer him on i mean who does that but anyways this book is still a very sexual cute romantic book for mature readers i would not recommend letting young readers read this book it just has way to many thins going on it it that they should not be finding out in a book so if you are a young reader don't read this book.

  • Stormy
    2018-10-13 17:03

    I love this author. I especially liked keeping you a secret but rage was good too. I'll admit part way through it I didn't think I would like it much. It wasn't till it hit me that there is a lesson to be learned from this i got sucked in.In Rage there is an abusive relationship but you see a side you don't see often. Someone who thinks that the abuse is a form of love. It's really interesting to go through the narrator's journey and see where she finally ends up.

  • Cristi
    2018-10-16 17:22

    I don't really remember much of this because I did read it a while ago, but it was the first LGBT book I read and I know that I enjoyed it. The character was raw and I like that. I picked this up from the library based on the cover and I didn't even read the synopsis. I am glad though because I think the fact that I read it on a whim made it better. I would recommend this to anyone.

  • Nancy
    2018-10-18 17:16

    I think that Peters is a terrific author, but I wasn't crazy about this title, at least partly because I didn't really like nor feel much connection with any of the characters. Probably that means this is just not the book for me, but I respect that it could be a very interesting book for another reader.

  • Jo
    2018-09-24 17:06

    ugh my first f/f book and it was TERRIBLE. god. characters are stupid. johanna's an idiot and an obsessed creep UGH i hate this book. i made it past half-way and then i was I CAN'T DO THIS ANYMORE SPARE ME ALL THIS SADOMASOCHISTIC RELATIONSHIP UGH WHY PEOPLE WHY DO YOU DO THIS TO YOURSELVES HAVE YOU NO SELF-RESPECT dkjafshlkjdahflskjdfhlkjdsahfdsalkjh /tableflipping rage why did i read this

  • Fawn-laughing till our ribs get tough but that will never be enough*Pizza rolls, not gender roles* (Who gave us the idea that
    2018-10-20 14:03

    While I liked that it explored abuse in same sex relationships, the book felt a bit unrealistic and rushed

  • Tabytha
    2018-10-17 20:54

    I just finish this book like an hour ago and I'm still recovering but this is one of my favourite books now it was amazing

  • Zoë
    2018-09-30 20:03

    I will start off by saying that I both loved and hated this book at the same time. The love overpowers the hate because I think it has a very powerful message in it that everyone needs to know about, even if they don’t ever read this book. And believe me, I don’t blame anyone for not wanting to read this book (unless it’s for homophobic reasons). Because it is deeply and downright depressing, even for Julie Anne Peters. Her most depressing one yet, it actually almost made me cry (the SECOND time around reading it too, mind you, so I was even prepared this time and knew all that was going to happen, and it still left a huge impact on me). It’s such a complicated dynamic, because I feel like it’s easier for us to comment on and criticize a character’s behavior or actions in a fictional setting when it comes to abusive relationships, whereas in real life, we’re more reluctant to do that because we’re afraid of crossing over into the territory of victim-blaming. I don’t, however, think that speaking about how the victim CAN try to do something to make the abuse stop is the same as victim-blaming. On the contrary, we’re probably doing them a disservice if we just give up and say, “There’s nothing you can do, you’re helpless, you have to just wait for someone else to come along and fight the abuser off for you.” Because that’s not true. That’s why I had such mixed feelings about the way Joanna was acting when Reeve was treating her the way she was, especially the two most cringe-worthy parts—where Joanna loses her job and where she loses her volunteer position at the hospice she loves so much. These were things that Joanna loved and that were helping her succeed at life, so when Reeve took them away and Joanna kept justifying it and saying Reeve didn’t have a choice, it’s not her fault, blah blah blah…and how Joanna still loves her and that’s it’s okay, you just want to SCREAM and shake her. It’s like, can’t you see how much she’s messing up your life??? I feel sad and mad at Joanna at the same time. She’s a good kid and doesn’t deserve to be treated like that, but she blatantly lets it happen for a very long time, and to extreme levels. Is that blaming the victim? I don’t think so. I think it’s drawing a line, a very important line, where you’re not blaming the victim for the abuser’s actions…you’re blaming them for their own (or lack thereof). I’m glad Peters didn’t just make this the typical abusive relationship story. There’s more to it than that. It shows that the abuse does not only affect the person being abused, but the people around them. It affects not only how they treat themselves, but how they treat others (a very pivotal moment in the book is when Joanna shoves Tessa into the cabinet). It affects not only that one relationship, but your entire life, spreading like wildfire. And oftentimes it is because the abuser comes from a terrible environment themselves, another thing Peters set out to represent in this book and succeeded at. I also think it’s time we start talking about the types of abusive relationships amongst people that no one talks about: ones amongst homosexual couples (males abusing males, females abusing females), or females abusing males, which people like to treat like a joke for some reason. Either way, the only kind you really ever hear about is males abusing females. Yes it’s important to continue talking about women who get abused by men as well, it’s just scary that people think that’s the only kind that exists.My favorite character ended up being Tessa, which is ironic considering she annoyed me to high heaven in the beginning. Of course I sympathize deeply with both Joanna and Reeve, because they are highly flawed characters you’re supposed to become frustrated with and want to turn to several times and be like, “Joanna banana, what are you doing!!!” I’m glad they end up getting the help that they both need, but I squirm when I think about what probably would’ve happened to them if Tessa hadn’t been there. Joanna was pretty responsible and self-reliant before Reeve came in. But love and abuse can really bring out the dark side in people, and weakness. Tessa really took charge at the end and more than made up for her absence in Joanna’s life earlier. Otherwise, Joanna would’ve ended up like Reeve, who ultimately had no one. And Reeve would’ve never gotten into that women’s shelter and she would’ve been all alone. Or worse, with her father…I’m just glad the book had a semi-happy ending, and believe it or not I was sad to see Reeve and Joanna have to leave each other in the end and they might never see each other again. That line where Joanna says she’ll drive away from her one visit to Reeve at that women’s shelter and probably never see her again gave me chills both times. They’d spent so much time together and while some of it was awful, some of it had laughs and joy and happiness from them both too. Them lying on the grass was their last time together and Reeve finally apologized to Joanna for ruining her life, at least in that year. It was sad, but it was a happy kind of sadness because as Joanna said, they both needed to be in a better place. They both deserved better. Man, does Julie Anne Peters know how to write an ending. Novak told Joanna she knows how to pick ‘em (girls), and I say, Peters knows how to pick ‘em (endings!). I’m so glad she did what was best for both the girls, rather than doing what people might most likely want—for them to end up together. It’s better to let people go if it’s going to save them from a world of pain, than to keep them together just because they’re addicted to each other (usually in a very unhealthy way). What’s disturbing is that there are authors who write about these types of relationships all the time (usually with a “hot” guy) and write them like they’re okay normal relationships, and people support them. Yes, Twilight and Hush, Hush and Eona, I am talking about you guys (not you specifically, Eona, just the bastards in your story who hurt you). I bet if Peters wrote those books, she’d have done it RIGHT, and gotten the girl to see how horrifying that sort of treatment is, how damaging and fucked up, and how she needs to get away from it. Hell, Reeve isn’t even half as bad as the guys in those books, but she’s still painted as more villainous than them. That’s how you tell who the smart authors are.Other characters:-Martin was pretty cool.-Novak-meh. She was annoying for the most part, but she still had her heart in the right place.-Robbie-oh god oh god, WHY DID HE HAVE TO DIE?! ): I sort of thought of him, Reeve, and Joanna as like the Three Amigos or Three Musketeers…there always seems to be a trio, usually one guy and two girls. And I thought it was sweet that Reeve and him practically shared everything together (even though she was mean to him a lot).-EVELYN. I hated this rich bitch so much. She was horrid from the beginning. She’s one of those idiots who think that because they’ve been through something tragic, they have every right to go around yelling at everyone else about it, even when literally no one is doing ANYTHING to them at all. She’s basically Jude Farraday…*shudder* Thank heavens Peters knows how despicable those kind of people are. Frankly I hated her so much that by the time it got around to the part where Joanna and Reeve were making out in her daughter’s room, I honestly didn’t care. That might sound horrible, but that’s just how I feel. In fact, I’m kind of glad they did it. I think I even smirked at that part. Yeah, I’m merciless and fucked up, what can I say. The daughter didn’t get hurt, but I’m glad Evelyn did, because the bitch had it coming. And I think it was more than obvious that she had a problem with them being lesbians along with what they were doing. As if it made it worse. As if if they were straight, it wouldn’t have been as bad. Evelyn needed to get an ass-whipping, that’s the only thing I desperately wish was added to the book.The writing was a little off for me. One minute it felt like it was taking too much time to describe a simple action (like pushing a mechanical pencil to get lead out) and then the next it felt like it was going too fast, probably because of some of the cringe-incidents. I could've done without many of the "Joylands" too. I mean, I know they were there to demonstrate the fantasies going on inside Joanna's head, but did there really need to be so many of them? Two or three maybe, but no more.