This is YA at its finest, but with a caveat
Disclaimer: I’ve received an advanced reader copy via NetGalley, this doesn’t influence my opinion or review. Thank you to the author and the publisher for providing me with a reader copy in exchange for an honest review.
“The end of childhood = realizing adults don’t know what the hell they’re doing”
Who should read it? Anyone who’s ready for an emotional YA read.
Would I recommend it? Yes!
TW: Domestic abuse, bullying
Wow, wasn’t this book SO sadly relatable, even for those like me, who have finished high school a long time ago. Truth is I still remember being bullied back at school and it made me realize there are things you just don’t forget. I even remember my own yearbook and how one of my classmates accused me of “not being able to take a joke”, thank you for calling that out, Holly! Those jokes that were only funny for the bullies, not the ones being bullied. Looking back, for a moment, it feels silly even. “We were kids” is what always seems to come to mind. Reading this book, however, reminded me of how much this is an actual problem — a serious one. And Holly Bourne did an amazing job depicting it through this not-so-light read.
This is what I particularly loved about this book:
🧡 The growth of the main character
It’s amazing to see how Paige grows; first, literally, through the school years; then mostly as part of her inner journey towards self-acceptance and discovery. This is also where things get heavy though, because Paige deals with so much more than what happens at school.
🧡 The fast pace
Despite the book being much heavier than what the cover made it look like (not that much of a Mean Girls vibe), it never gets boring. It kept me curious to know more about Paige and her personal struggles, and what the next move of hers would be! Her path towards self-discovery until she was able to understand her core values and beliefs was an exciting one.
🧡 The romance
Who doesn’t like a little bit of romance? While it was not the central part of the story, it was sweet, cute, and even a bit unpredictable.
What I didn’t like so much:
🌧️ The cover-synopsis-content mismatch
I was in the mood for a light read, and I got everything but! While this ended up not being a bad thing, I wonder who might miss the content of this book because of the misleading cover and synopsis, or those who might feel disconnected from the book due to having wrong expectations.
Overall, “The Yearbook” was an emotional rollercoaster of a book that spoke a lot to me. I’m sure many will enjoy it, as long as they see past the colorful cover.