‘It isn’t what happens to you in your life that destroys you. It’s what you do about it.’
Ashley Watson has spent most of her high school life being bullied. She spends the week walking the school halls where she is constantly shoved and taunted and bullied. Her relationship with her mum is strained. Her best friend doesn’t see her the way she wants him to. She can also see her future self when she looks in the mirror. Her future self has done it all before, and she knows what Ashley is about to go through.
Every Ugly Word is a thought provoking and powerful novel about how bullying affects a person, both mentally and physically. I really did struggle to put this book down when I finally managed to read it. There were some aspects of this book which left me wondering whether it was real or not, and I think that actually increased my enjoyment of the book. I am assuming that there is a paranormal aspect to this book, as a few people have shelved it as that, which was unusual for the book, yet I think it worked really well.
Every Ugly Word really impacted me. It feels so real and it had so much depth to the story. It makes you really think how anyone would even want to make an individual feel worthless, and put all that effort into making someone’s life a living hell.Every Ugly Word really is a fantastically written novel which leaves you breathless and hurt, but proud at watching Ashley overcome what she went through and realise that she is worth something. She is better than them. That was really great. Character development was spot on.
The romance takes the back seat in Every Ugly Word, which I am forever grateful for because Ashley needed to learn her own worth, not who she was with Matt. The bullying is the focus of the story, and its impact on Ashley.
Matt is… well, he is a typical guy. He dated the girl who hurt Ashley, the girl who has been her tormentor, and he doesn’t really care. He tries to force them to get along, but it just doesn’t work and he seems blind to the issues. Not a very good friend to me, but his character development is decent because he eventually learn that Ashley is his true friend, and not all the bullies. While he is a flawed and realistic character, I am still really conflicted about his relationship with Ashley, and I just can’t make my mind up as to whether I like them together or not.
Ashley is a fantastic character. She is so raw and real and perfectly written. She is everything you want in a character. She is strong, but vulnerable. She is passionate, but she doesn’t know who she is yet. She has been conditioned to think she is worthless, but she comes out the other side scarred, but knowing she is important. She is a truly inspiring character.
Overall, a fantastic, heart wrenching read that I would recommend in a heartbeat.
MY RATING: ★★★★★