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Publication date: April 29th, 2014
My rating: 4 stars
"Emma Putnam is dead, and it's all Sara Wharton's fault.
At least, that's what everyone seems to think. Sara, along with her best friend and three other classmates, has been criminally charged for the bullying and harassment that led to Emma's shocking suicide. Now Sara is the one who's ostracized, already guilty according to her peers, the community, and the media.
During the summer before her senior year, in between meetings with lawyers and a court-recommended therapist, Sara is forced to reflect on the events that brought her to this moment—and ultimately consider her role in an undeniable tragedy. And she'll have to find a way to move forward, even when it feels like her own life is over.
In this powerful debut novel inspired by real-life events, Amanda Maciel weaves a narrative of high school life as complex and heartbreaking as it is familiar: a story of everyday jealousies and resentments, misunderstandings and desires. Tease is a thought-provoking must-read that will haunt readers long after the last page."
You have never read a book like this one. I won't lie and tell you how amazing this book is, that you'll feel as if you just have to read it in one sitting and that you will love a main character. But it is a brilliant book. Amanda Maciel speaks up about the things we'd rather push under the mat and not think about them and she does all that from unexpected point of view. That is the reason why Tease is not an easy book to read.
We need more books like this. If you read only to escape from reality, to swoon over fictional romances and not think about anything relevant for few hours, Tease won't give you that. Told form the perspective of Sara, popular high school student and one of the bullies, this tale will make you think and ask yourself a lot of questions. It might even make you feel really uncomfortable, upset or mad. Few will recognize themselves in the characters, but they won't like that feeling at all. That's why they will say how bad this book is, give it a low rating or ignore it completely because we don't like to admit that we are bad persons. Or bullies. Even if we didn't realize how wrong some of our actions were.
No one is perfect. All the characters in this novel are deeply flawed, even Emma, the girl who was bullied. No one is left blameless - parents, kids, teachers, school head master, family... What I liked the most is that author is giving you a lot of facts and snippets about past and present, but not once she makes you pick sides intentionally - she doesn't push you or make obvious remarks about what is right or wrong. Show, don't tell at its best.
Who should read this book? There are no exceptions with this one. Everyone. I really hope it will be translated on a lot of languages, including mine because I plan to make all of my kids read it.
***Copy of this book was provided by publisher, Balzer + Bray, via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.***