The Worst of Me by Kate Le Van
Rating: Four stars
Summary: (taken from back of the book)
Cassidy has been feeling unsettled and adrift, but things look up when she meets an older boy called Jonah. She loves spending time with him and his friends, flattered to be included in their discussions. Jonah is sweet and sensitive and she’s never felt so happy.
But then Cassidy hears disturbing news about Jonah which shakes her trust in him and makes her question her own judgment. If you love someone, how far should you go to overlook their faults?A sharply insightful story about the sometimes painful process of growing up and thinking for yourself.
All I knew about The Worst of Me was that it was a story about love, but I was surprised to find that it was SO much more than that. It really made on impact on me, it was actually meaningful and deep. With romance, life, religion, and coming of age, The Worst of Me really stood out amongst the rest.
Cassidy isn't all that happy right now. Her dad left her and her mom for someone else, and now she's stuck with her mom's new boyfriend instead. Her ex dumped her for someone better than her and on top of all that she's confused about who she is. But when she meets Jonah, the older boy, and everything changes. She loves being in love and is sure about something for once. Jonah and his friends quickly move into Cassidy's life. When Cassidy discovers some disturbing things about her new friends, she has to decide how far she's willing to go for love...
Gosh there was so many things I loved about this book. It was set in England, which really added a lot to the book. It was nice to visit someplace else other than the U.S. The way the characters talked and did things was really interesting. The writing was a little bit different, but you definitely got used to it.
The characters were very well developed. Cassidy was a really relatable main character. Her thoughts and insecurities were real. Cassidy was intellectual, although she might not have known it. As for Jonah, I didn't love him so much. I could tell he was confused about who he was as in individual as opposed to his group of friends. Sam, Cassidy's gay friend, was one of my favorites! I just loved him, he was so sweet and funny. He always knew what to say. I would to have him as a friend :)
Aside from the romance and coming of age aspects, religion was sprinkled into the mix. Kate did a beautiful job in not disrespecting anyone and showing all the different perspectives. Islam was one of the main conflicts, and it was really interesting to see how it was viewed in another country other than America.
Overall I really enjoyed this novel...a lot. I'm glad I got a chance to read it. A huge thanks goes to Kate herself for sending me this one (she even signed it too). The card she sent along with it was so nice! I definitely recommend giving this one a try :)