Hauntingly Beautiful // REVIEW: We Are Okay by Nina LaCour

Title: We Are Okay
Author: Nina LaCour
Publication Date: February 14th 2017
Publisher: Dutton Books for Young Readers
Part of a Series?: No, A Standalone
I Got A Copy Through: PRH International (THANK YOU!)
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Blurb Description: You go through life thinking there’s so much you need…
Until you leave with only your phone, your wallet, and a picture of your mother.
Marin hasn’t spoken to anyone from her old life since the day she left everything behind. No one knows the truth about those final weeks. Not even her best friend, Mabel. But even thousands of miles away from the California coast, at college in New York, Marin still feels the pull of the life and tragedy she’s tried to outrun. Now, months later, alone in an emptied dorm for winter break, Marin waits. Mabel is coming to visit, and Marin will be forced to face everything that’s been left unsaid and finally confront the loneliness that has made a home in her heart. 
Some facts before I begin:

   1)      This is my first Nina LaCour book (ducks in shame)
   2)      I bought into the hype surrounding this book when I requested a review copy (and it TOTALLY lived up to it)

Short and Sweet? This was a hauntingly beautiful book, filled with prose that hit you and characters so complicated and deep that you won’t be able to stop thinking about them.

Here are some of my thoughts:

1)      The writing in this book was BRILLIANT. It managed to subtly shout across to me, through each word, raw pain and grief and loneliness.
Someday is an open word. It could mean tomorrow or decades away.”
2)      I went into this book not knowing what to except – it sounded good, but vague. I’d heard everyone saying it would break me, and so while I was anticipating reading it, I honestly had no idea what I would get from this book.
“We were miraculous.We were beach creatures. We had treasures in our pockets and each other on our skin.” 
3)      If you’re an “I Like Big Books and I Cannot Lie” person, (like all self-respecting bookworms are) then you should know that this book is SMALL. It’s a little over that 200 pages, and I thought it would take me no time at all to finish it, but it was HARD to get through a book that made me feel so much. This book requires deep breaths, pauses to process everything you’re feeling and maybe even a few tissues.
“You go through life thinking there’s so much you need… Until you leave with only your phone, your wallet, and a picture of your mother.”
4)      I LOVED LOVED LOVED Marin and Mabel. I love them as friends, I loved them as individuals and I loved them together. I love the way Nina LaCour put their relationship to words – as something real and painful and happy and like two people discovering a whole new part of themselves and it was so beautiful to see how they got together and at the same time so heart-breaking to know how it all ended.
“When I think of all of us back then, I see how we were in danger. Not because of the drinking or the sex or the hour of the night. But because we were so innocent and we didn’t know it. There’s no way of getting it back. The confidence. The easy laughter. The sensation of having left home only for a little while. Of having a home to return to.”
5)      THE PAIN. Like I said, this book was hard to read because you could FEEL EVERY OUNCE OF GRIEF that poured out of all the characters. I was sitting there, totally immersed in the story of two girls I knew for about fifty pages and AAH I felt everything.
I couldn’t recommend this book more.  

Nina LaCourNina LaCour grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area. Her first job was at fourteen in an independent bookstore, and she has since worked in two others. She has tutored and taught in various places, from a juvenile hall to a private college. She now teaches English at an independent high school.
Have you read any Nina LaCour books? Which one is your favourite? 
Have you gotten the chance to read We Are Okay yet? What did you think of it? 

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