I Was Here

I Was Here - Gayle Forman i got an arc from edelweiss for a review c'mon now you know the drill.

this book started out very promising and that's the main reason that i'm actually very, very angry while i write this review. i can't think of another book that's disappointed me to this degree, actually, but let's move on from that and talk about exactly why i hated this book so much in the first place.

this review will have horrible grammar and probably a lot of cursing because I WANT MY LIFE BACK.


now when i say it started out promising, i mean that when i read the first few chapters, i thought i was going to get a sprawling, heartbreaking story about two best friends who had grown apart and things had gone from bad to worse (ie, [b:The After Girls|16225093|The After Girls|Leah Konen|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1354571343s/16225093.jpg|22208016], which is absolutely flawless) but after a few chapters, i realized that this was actually going to be much the opposite. even the first chapters, in retrospect, were full of whiny, sniveling, self-serving drivel.

let's be honest: this entire book was full of whiny, sniveling, self-serving drivel.

i've just spent a few hours of my life on it and i find myself thinking now, what was the point of that? why did this idiotic girl who's supposed to be 18 but carries herself as if she's 12 travel practically across the country to find a stranger from a fucking forum? why did it matter so much that her friend spoke to people on a cult-like message board before she killed herself? no one made her kill herself; it was suicide, not murder. why did this selfish little brat never consider that her friend had problems - real ones, deep-rooted ones, that she was her own person, that she suffered from depression (not mono i mean are you fucking stupid the girl was raped so of course she's depressed and staying in bed what kind of friend believes it's mono and doesn't put forth the effort to call or text their "best friend" even if it was??? shitty ones like this girl oh my god) but i digress.

more importantly, why did all of these other supposed adults support her in stalking down an innocent fucking stranger that didn't actually do anything other than spew off some random quotes from a gigantic book of them and offer her support in her endeavor? it's not like she was forced into using the site. or into talking to him. or, more importantly, into taking the poison. this was a stupid, childish premise and she was a stupid, childish girl for ever not just accepting that meg had problems, was a real person, was not just a mindless little toy.

NOW ON TO THE OTHER THINGS THAT MADE ME MAD AS SHIT: SLUT SHAMING.

oh. my. god. the amount of slut shaming in this book made me sick. not even just things that the mc said, oh no, but the very fabric of the story screamed of slut shaming. her mother was stupid, absent, poor, and a total slut and that's why cody's life sucked so much. disgusting. the way she thought of meg as a "dead one night stand" is disgusting and unforgivable. the way she thought of herself as not "one of those girls" (which her best friend apparently was one of them!!) and put down other girls and allowed ben to do it over and over and over and said nothing was fucking horrible. the way all of the bg characters who were girls were obviously dumb stupid ugly blonde shallow sluts and she was perfect cos she was a virginal little angel oMG was horrible. i can't.

i just fucking can't.

cody was creepily obsessed with meg, oppressive and clingy whilst being unsupportive and absent. she was an all around horrible friend. she used meg as a crutch and not in a healthy way, in a horrible way where she willfully ignored all of meg's problems, her flaws, her needs, her wants, and only cared about what she wanted to see of her. when meg move away to college and cody got (??? jealous??? weird???? whatever) mad about it and started being a little dick (making excuses not to come, kicking her in her sleep, picking random fights, being a wet blanket while she was there,) she more or less emotionally abandoned meg long before meg literally abandoned her. and then this entitled little brat whines that meg had other friends, other interests, a whole life she didn't know about. when really, it was a whole life she didn't ask about. she only wanted to keep meg to herself, she only wanted meg to be what she wanted her to be.

she was a toxic, horrible friend, a shitty, disrespectful daughter, and an absent, self-centered pupil. (I MEAN THAT LIBRARIAN WAS A NICE LADY HOW FUCKING DARE YOU)

and then the fact that she fell for (and fucked) ben at all. that is deplorable. that is horrific. she is a horrible, horrible fucking human being, the worst best friend i've ever read in a book, and she's a shallow, thirsty, vapid little thing because why did she not throat-check him for ever daring to say he was glad that meg killed herself because he got to meet her??? the fuck was that. no matter how hot he was or how blue his stupid goddamn eyes were, your best friend liked him and killed herself in a way that is undeniably related to him. on top of that -- he was her first sexual partner after her fucking rape, but who cares about that as long as cody gets to be in love with a boy? no one, apparently.

fucking. no. one.

perhaps most importantly, what the hell did she mean that she told ben it wasn't his fault that that's all she wanted to hear this whole time? DO YOU MEAN LIKE HOW MEG PUT IT IN HER SUICIDE NOTE FOR YOU???? DO YOU MEAN HOW SHE KILLED HERSELF AND CLEARLY STATED ON PAGE ONE THAT SHE DID IT FOR HERSELF? TO END HER PAIN? THAT IT'S NOT ALL ABOUT YOU, YOU NARCISSISTIC LITTLE GIRL???? is this a joke - literally was this entire book a really bad joke.

so many of these chapters were pointless filler. so many of the things in this book were stupid and offensive.

i saved this for last because it hit home for me in a bad way: what the fucking shit did cody mean when she said meg's family was "a real family" because there was a mom and a dad? SLUT. SHAMING. single moms are all dumb drunk gambling whores that can't raise children. it's only a real family if you have two parents!! well fuck you cody. and fuck you too ben. fuck this whole fucking book.

fuck.

i'm still waiting for an e-mail telling me this wasn't my real arc and i got punk'd. c'mon ashton kutcher, don't fail me now.

i've had enough failure for one day.


(p.s. lacey wrapped up my entire tantrum in a nice, sane way over here.)