Wednesday, 13 May 2015

'Read Me Like A Book' by Liz Kessler (*****)

Happy Wednesday, readers! Today I have a much anticipated post... a review of the fabulous Read Me Like A Book by the wonderful Liz Kessler! As soon as I heard about this book I requested an uncorrected proof copy straight away. I loved the Emily Windsnap and Philippa Fisher series when I was younger so I was very excited when I saw a new Liz Kessler title, after all these years! I remember when I was little I would wish every single night that I could meet Liz Kessler one day (I was seriously obsessed with mermaids and fairies, as you can probably gather) and it's absolutely crazy that, this many years on, I am able to fulfil that dream! I am super excited for tomorrow night, the Read Me Like A Book launch party, and I cannot wait to finally meet my childhood hero! In the meantime, however, I am delighted to talk about the novel itself, and share with you my thoughts. This is my one of my favourite reads for 2015; I cannot recommend a book highly enough. 

I was sent an uncorrected bound proof of Read Me Like A Book by Orion Books in exchange for an honest review! Here's the blurb:

Ashleigh Walker is in love. You know the feeling - that intense, heart-racing, all-consuming emotion that can only come with first love. It's enough to stop her worrying about bad grades at college. Enough to distract her from her parents' marriage troubles. There's just one thing bothering her...

Shouldn't it be her boyfriend, Dylan, who makes her feel this way - not Miss Murray, her English teacher?

I was gripped from the very first page. That is no exaggeration. As soon as I was introduced to Ashleigh, I knew that I could relate to her, sympathise with her, travel on this journey with her. The adolescent voice came through so clearly and it was so wonderfully enunciated. It was honest yet realistic; as a teenager, I didn't feel patronised or 'preached' to- probably the worst feature of some YA literature! The book can easily be described as a journey, because as Ashleigh begins to discover more about herself, the reader is able to journey with her, sharing in the happy moments, sad moments and moments where you whisper: yeah, I sometimes feel like that too. It doesn't matter how you define yourself sexuality-wise, there is something everyone can relate to in this wonderful book. You know that warm, comforting feeling when you read a book and you feel that the author has kind of climbed inside your head and had a go at understanding how you feel? Cause it's weird that they seem to totally get it. Yup, that's how I felt when reading this book.

As for the plot, I always felt like it was moving somewhere. There were so many things going on in the book but I never felt lost, just constantly moving. The narrative could have felt rushed, confused, bewildering, simply because the protagonist is on a journey of terrifying self-discovery, however it most certainly didn't. In a way, feeling slightly confused and often on edge due to the confused jumble of Ashleigh's feelings just made the book a bit more real. Not every single teenager feels confused about their sexuality, but every teenager sometimes feels confused, period. Read Me Like A Book made me feel okay about that.

Overall, Read Me Like A Book was a beautifully told, amazingly addictive and touching tale about a teenager trying to find herself. It's awful to think that today, in our supposedly 'modern' society, people are still afraid to speak about who they really are. Read Me Like A Book is not only groundbreaking in subject matter, but also in it's message of always staying true to yourself, no matter how frightening that seems to be. 

Check out Liz Kessler here:

Pre-order Read Me Like A Book here:

Find out more about Read Me Like A Book here:

Until next time :)

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