“No one is exclusively bad, nor is anyone exclusively good. Some are just forced to work harder at suppressing the bad.”
― Colleen Hoover, It Ends with Us
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Oh wow, this book was so many things. Raw, emotional and most of all, real. I went in knowing it was about a dysfunctional relationship and not much else. I was expecting a plotline similar to many of the thrillers I’m a fan of. Instead, it was a much more realistic portrayal of abusive relationships and the many layers they consist of.
I won’t go too much into the plot because I think it’s better to go in knowing as little as possible. The author dedicated the book to her mother and father and wrote the storyline around the type of relationship they had during the time they were married. The main character, Lily, is based on her mother. Hoover makes a great case about the stigma and judgement surrounding abuse. While many people may feel sympathy for the victim, they often can’t understand why they would stay in a relationship when someone is hurting them. Hoover answers this question, by sharing Lily’s story.
I loved Lily’s character and her strength. Growing up in an abusive home, she told herself she would never get in a situation like the one her mother was in with her father. As she becomes an adult and enters her own relationship, she realizes things aren’t always as black and white as they appear on the outside looking in. I loved the quote one of the characters uses, “There is no such thing as bad people. We’re all just people who sometimes do bad things.” This resonated with me so much and helped me relate to Lily’s character and what she went through. I loved how the author didn’t portray the male character as the stereotypical evil partner but instead showed the many different sides of his personality. It’s not as easy as saying someone is simply good or bad. This story revealed the gray area that can be present in situations such as this one and why it isn’t always an easy choice to stay or leave an abusive relationship. In Hoover’s acknowledgement at the end of the book, I related to her feelings of wanting to rewrite certain scenes and depict the male character differently. I would have felt the same way. I appreciated the painfully honest way she ended up portraying his character and the inability to categorize him as one thing is one of the reasons I loved this story.
It Ends with Us is a powerful book and a beautiful depiction of a difficult subject. Have any of you read it? Let me know what you thought in the comments!
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