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Hi! I'm Selan. I love anime, sci-fi & fantasy, Kirby and 90s JRPGs. Right now I'm trying to expand my collection of books.


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Hate List - Jennifer Brown

I liked this book. It's about the aftermath of a school shooting, where the shooter was actually the boyfriend of the female protagonist. The book's about her struggles and recovery, and her relationship in general with all the other characters.

Now, that sounds like an awesome theme to use for a book. Like, wow. It's a great idea. I'm just not sure it was implemented very well.

Although I enjoyed most of the characters, and in general this book was very well-written, there are a few flaws in general:

1. Valerie's boyfriend, Nick, is the shooter. She spends the entire book reminiscing about their time together with him and basically painting him in a positive light, thinking how "Nick wasn't really a bad guy" and about how he was pretty romantic, he liked Shakespeare...Look, girl, he SHOT SIX PEOPLE! He's a freaking serial killer! There's a good reason why everyone is trying to tell you he's not someone to be with...Although, I get that she was in love with him and didn't realise his true intentions. There's also no indication about why he started shooting people, but I can live with that.

2. Valerie's parents. Holy shit. They are the most despicable and hateful parents I have ever seen in any book by far! They constantly act as if SHE was the one who shot all those people, as if their daughter is a murderer. Valerie even tries to reach out to her dad for help and support...and he repays her by being fucking abusive and yelling in her face. They're fucking horrible. They shouldn't be allowed to have children...

3. Vaguely useless parts of the story. There was this mysterious woman called Bea who really helped with Valerie's development. Who the hell is Bea? I thought there wold be a plot twist about her...but they never SAY? Who is she?? Also, the reporter near the end, she contributes nothing much. Or Troy threatening Valerie with a gun. He never appears again? I don't mind too much about these points, but...it really seemed pointless.

4. The really fast ending. It was quite tearful and emotional, having the memorial service, and all is forgiven and forgotten...even though her parents are still freaking assholes for treating her like shit. And it ends just there? One chapter? Couldn't we have a bit more closure on that, huh?

Oh well. I think it was a good read overall, but I have read better. I mean, Never Ending is a book which is written much better and has much more emotion and brought real tears to my eyes. Not so much this.