Review: History is All You Left Me

Posted February 6, 2017 by Emily in Review / 0 Comments

Review: History is All You Left MeHistory Is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera
Published by Soho Teen on January 17th 2017
Genres: Contemporary, LGBT, Diverse Reads
Pages: 320
Format: Paperback
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When Griffin’s first love and ex-boyfriend, Theo, dies in a drowning accident, his universe implodes. Even though Theo had moved to California for college and started seeing Jackson, Griffin never doubted Theo would come back to him when the time was right. But now, the future he’s been imagining for himself has gone far off course.
To make things worse, the only person who truly understands his heartache is Jackson. But no matter how much they open up to each other, Griffin’s downward spiral continues. He’s losing himself in his obsessive compulsions and destructive choices, and the secrets he’s been keeping are tearing him apart.
If Griffin is ever to rebuild his future, he must first confront his history, every last heartbreaking piece in the puzzle of his life.

This was my first Adam Silvera book and I have to say, I think his writing is beautiful. It’s easy to get lost within his words and the story he created. His characters are well developed and a lot like people you may know in reality. I remember thinking that I wished this book could be forced into the hands of people who don’t understand that love is love, even when it’s not a heterosexual relationship. If what Griffin felt for Theo wasn’t love, then what the hell is?

This is not a happy story. It is very depressing at times and it’s hard to catch a glimpse of happiness until you’re done and can reflect on everything that you can learn from Griffin’s trials. One may want to be in a good state of mind before reading it. That being said, there is a lot to this book. There’s love, loss, grief, and OCD.

I read in a different review that someone thought the OCD felt inauthentic and just thrown in. They mentioned it being too much to add to the themes that are also a part of this book, but I think that opinion is missing something huge. People who have OCD also love and lose people. The reality is that someone could be facing all of these things at one time, just like Griffin. I personally felt like Griffin’s OCD was very well written because there were so many times when I wouldn’t have ever considered a situation where an obsession with everything ending or being an even number would exist.

Griffin’s way of dealing with grief was so real and Silvera didn’t hold back or sugar coat some of the things we do as humans in situations where we don’t know how to react and therefore make mistakes. Getting over your first love is SO difficult. That’s a harsh reality. Not being the one to move on first makes it that much harder. Griffin found himself facing extreme jealousy when Theo moved on and becoming serious with Jackson on the other side of the country. I think another really important and notable aspect of this situation was how a once happy, healthy relationship turned into something that was selfish and the opposite of what it once was. I truly think this happens often and the individual in Griffin’s position thinks they’re never going to feel that love again and need to wait around for the other person to realize this mistake. This is wildly unfair, not to mention untrue.

Overall, this was a beautiful book in spite of the sadness. This is a solid 4 stars in my book.




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