**I have received a review copy of this book from Simon & Schuster through Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.**
TITLE: The You I’ve Never Known
AUTHOR: Ellen Hopkins
IMPRINT: Margaret K. McElderry Books
PUB. DATE: 1-24-17
The You I’ve Never Known Summary:
How do you live your life if your past is based on a lie? A new novel in both verse and prose from #1 New York Times bestselling author, Ellen Hopkins.
For as long as she can remember, it’s been just Ariel and Dad. Ariel’s mom disappeared when she was a baby. Dad says home is wherever the two of them are, but Ariel is now seventeen and after years of new apartments, new schools, and new faces, all she wants is to put down some roots. Complicating things are Monica and Gabe, both of whom have stirred a different kind of desire.
Maya’s a teenager who’s run from an abusive mother right into the arms of an older man she thinks she can trust. But now she’s isolated with a baby on the way, and life’s getting more complicated than Maya ever could have imagined.
Ariel and Maya’s lives collide unexpectedly when Ariel’s mother shows up out of the blue with wild accusations: Ariel wasn’t abandoned. Her father kidnapped her fourteen years ago.
What is Ariel supposed to believe? Is it possible Dad’s woven her entire history into a tapestry of lies? How can she choose between the mother she’s been taught to mistrust and the father who has taken care of her all these years?
In bestselling author Ellen Hopkins’s deft hands, Ariel’s emotionally charged journey to find out the truth of who she really is balances beautifully with Maya’s story of loss and redemption. This is a memorable portrait of two young women trying to make sense of their lives and coming face to face with themselves—for both the last and the very first time.
Review: This was truly an amazing book!
Before I go on, I’d like to note that there is mature content taking place in the book. I am telling you this because I know some readers like to be warned before hand.
I loved the journey both Maya and Ariel took to discover themselves. It was really heartwarming and I couldn’t put the book down even if I tried. There is so much diversity between the two characters and yet they are linked together by facing similar problems. They both have someone abusive in their lives, and they both want to discover what home really is. They go through heartache and deceit to find out where they belong in the world, and that made the story even more beautiful.
Maya has made poor mistakes in life, but you see her willing to change herself for her soon-to-be-born daughter, and once she’s born, Maya starts to realize she’s no so alone with her daughter by her side. But then there’s a large gap between the years, and when you read Maya’s accounts to her daughter you see her determination and her newfound courage.
Ariel is a much different story. She’s a smart girl, and very athletic, but she gets drawn into her father’s lies and believes him. So it was harder for her to accept the truth once it came out, and it was even harder for her to be comfortable with who she is. You learn about her struggle with her identity from the very beginning, and see her take great lengths to figure out what and who she’s truly comfortable with. I also loved seeing her change towards the end, and I enjoyed how everything turned out.
The writing was beautiful, no doubt about it. Almost poetic. The format of the book was a bit hard for me to read at the beginning (it looked like it was divided into stanzas) but eventually I got used to it. Actually it was unique, the way the book was set up, and I really enjoyed it.
Overall, this was a totally new experience, but it was amazing all the same. I hope all of you found this book as captivating as I did!
More: I really hope you enjoyed with review, and if you did please give it a thumbs up! Also follow my blog is you want more reviews like this one! Make sure to give Ellen Hopkins a visit (I mean her website) and stand by for the release of this book! Keep reading!