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From the outside, Coley Sterling’s life seems pretty normal . . . whatever that means. It’s not perfect—her best friend is seriously mad at her and her dance team captains keep giving her a hard time—but Coley’s adorable, sweet crush Reece helps distract her. Plus, she has a great family to fall back on—with a mom and stepdad who would stop at nothing to keep her siblings From the outside, Coley Sterling’s life seems pretty normal . . . whatever that means. It’s not perfect—her best friend is seriously mad at her and her dance team captains keep giving her a hard time—but Coley’s adorable, sweet crush Reece helps distract her. Plus, she has a great family to fall back on—with a mom and stepdad who would stop at nothing to keep her siblings and her happy. But Coley has a lot of secrets. She won’t admit—not even to herself—that her almost-perfect life is her own carefully-crafted façade. That for years she’s been burying the shame and guilt over a relationship that crossed the line. Now that Coley has the chance at her first real boyfriend, a decade’s worth of lies are on the verge of unraveling. In this unforgettable powerhouse of a novel, Mindi Scott offers an absorbing, layered glimpse into the life of an everygirl living a nightmare that no one would suspect.


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From the outside, Coley Sterling’s life seems pretty normal . . . whatever that means. It’s not perfect—her best friend is seriously mad at her and her dance team captains keep giving her a hard time—but Coley’s adorable, sweet crush Reece helps distract her. Plus, she has a great family to fall back on—with a mom and stepdad who would stop at nothing to keep her siblings From the outside, Coley Sterling’s life seems pretty normal . . . whatever that means. It’s not perfect—her best friend is seriously mad at her and her dance team captains keep giving her a hard time—but Coley’s adorable, sweet crush Reece helps distract her. Plus, she has a great family to fall back on—with a mom and stepdad who would stop at nothing to keep her siblings and her happy. But Coley has a lot of secrets. She won’t admit—not even to herself—that her almost-perfect life is her own carefully-crafted façade. That for years she’s been burying the shame and guilt over a relationship that crossed the line. Now that Coley has the chance at her first real boyfriend, a decade’s worth of lies are on the verge of unraveling. In this unforgettable powerhouse of a novel, Mindi Scott offers an absorbing, layered glimpse into the life of an everygirl living a nightmare that no one would suspect.

30 review for Live Through This

  1. 4 out of 5

    Jasprit

    Live Through This was a beautiful achy read which cut me deep with the secrets of Coley’s life. Everyone assumes that Coley has the perfect life, great family and a nice bunch of friends. But for years Coley’s just been barely keeping it together, this facade that she portrays of herself as a strong independent girl is all false and is about to come tumbling around her when she starts getting close for the first time to Reece, a boy from her school. Live Through This starts off as a mystery novel Live Through This was a beautiful achy read which cut me deep with the secrets of Coley’s life. Everyone assumes that Coley has the perfect life, great family and a nice bunch of friends. But for years Coley’s just been barely keeping it together, this facade that she portrays of herself as a strong independent girl is all false and is about to come tumbling around her when she starts getting close for the first time to Reece, a boy from her school. Live Through This starts off as a mystery novel with a case of who done it? The opening scene starts with giving you an insight into how much of a burden Coley’s life is; how much she has to hold back to maintain everything together. But were given no clue into who was causing all this heartache, and pain for Coley. I was quick to make assumptions by just watching and reading her behaviour with family and friends I thought it was glaringly obvious who it could be. But I couldn’t have been more further from the truth. The mess Coley had to deal with day in day out was so heart wrenching to watch, she finally found someone she truly liked in Reece, but there was always one thing holding her back. My heart truly ached for her all the time until it all became too much for Coley too. The worst thing was Coley had so many close friends, but she felt she couldn’t confide in them, because the more she thought things through the more confused she became herself. She felt she couldn’t confide in anyone at home either because there was always this “us and them” divide between her and her brother and her mum’s new family. Her mum had re-married and had three kids, and so Coley and her brother Bryan always felt that separation between the family. Coley honestly had it all to deal with, I hated the way she felt she was to blame; she’d been through so much that I wanted her to get her life back on track to the life she truly deserved. Mindi Scott did a sublime job with Live Through This. Her writing was elegant and yet purposeful, it’s like every single word was chosen to have that specific effect on you and get right under your skin, she didn’t waste time but drew you into this raw world that you eventually find yourself so caught up in it. Live Through This was a story which took me completely by surprise, it was a story of secrets, heartache, growth and sometimes realising you can confide in people you least expect. Mind Scott effortlessly lures you in, that before you know it you’ve reached the end of such a poignant story. I highly recommend picking Live Through This up.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    Sexual abuse is a subject that should be handled tactfully and with empathy, and I felt that this story fell short for me. While I can see the vision Mindi Scott had for this novel, a story about sexual abuse coming from someone you love and trust, Coley's view of the world is so incredibly warped and not in a genuine way. There's no healing in this book, which I think is an important part of this kind of YA novel. Coley is a seemingly typical high school sophomore with boy trouble, best friend f Sexual abuse is a subject that should be handled tactfully and with empathy, and I felt that this story fell short for me. While I can see the vision Mindi Scott had for this novel, a story about sexual abuse coming from someone you love and trust, Coley's view of the world is so incredibly warped and not in a genuine way. There's no healing in this book, which I think is an important part of this kind of YA novel. Coley is a seemingly typical high school sophomore with boy trouble, best friend fights, and strict parents. Despite her oh-so-normal exterior, Coley's brother has been subjecting her to sexual abuse since she was seven. As Coley struggles to separate herself from the horror of her nights, she finds comfort in new friends and a new boyfriend. To start with the positives, I think this is a subject that needs attention, and I liked that the novel provided places abuse victims can go for help at the end. Reece, Coley's boyfriend, was a very likeable character without crossing over into being perfect. He was a nerdy, fun jazz band-type, and Scott doesn't spend a lot of time with Coley fawning over how hot he is, which was a major relief in a novel told 1st person by a teenage girl. I actually also liked how this book was an uncomfortable read. It's easy to see that the author wasn't worried about making her readers comfortable when writing this book, and instead, she focused on the abused party's experiences as she thought they would have been. Other than that, I had several problems with this novel. First of all, there is not really a plot. There is nothing that drives this novel from the beginning to the end other than time passing. There is no building action, climax, denouement, nothing. This whole novel is about a situation that this poor girl is in, but there was nothing that kept me turning pages. Luckily, it is a short book, so I still got through it. Had it been much longer I definitely would have struggled. Coley narrates the novel, yet I never felt connected to her or her situations. It's a very strange thing. We learn of her awful secret in the first chapter, but after that it doesn't ever cross her mind for about 125 pages. Considering that she's telling the story, I feel that at some point we should feel her fear or despair or frustration or something during that time, but we don't. On that note, there is very little inner monologue going on. We occasionally get a hint of what Coley is thinking, but she does a poor job narrating her life to the readers. Determining her relationships with the various characters in the book was more difficult than it should have been. I was about halfway through the book until I felt that I had a grasp on Coley's relationships. For example, we hear about how Reece picks her up for school, she jokes with Noah before basketball practice, and she hangs out with Ming; however, it took me forever to figure out that she has known Reece for a few months (new friend), she has known Noah forever (old friend), and Ming is a friend from her dance team that has recently been upgraded to her closest friend. Simple narratives like this would have made the story much easier to read. Finally, the ending was rough. I'm not sure if Scott was trying to show that Coley has grown over the novel, which I guess she has because she's talking to people, but I feel like the readers are owed a better conclusion than that. I would have loved to read about her mother's and Tony's reactions and the decisions they make in helping Bryan and Coley. For example, do they seek psychiatric help for Bryan or jail time? Do they let Bryan continue to live there? How does Reece handle this news? Overall, this isn't a book I would recommend. I didn't hate it, but it was hard to empathize with the main character. Fans of What Happens Next by Colleen Clayton might like this novel, but if you are looking for a young adult novel that tactfully and respectfully handles the issue of sexual abuse then might I suggest Easy by Tammara Webber?

  3. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    {This review was originally published on Clear Eyes, Full Shelves.} There’s something thrilling and even a bit nerve-wracking about reading the second novel by an author whose debut landed squarely on my True Book Love shelf. It’s thrilling because of the anticipation of hoping that book magic will happen all over again. Mindi Scott’s 2010 debut, Freefall, is a book I love dearly (Laura’s review pretty much nails it) so I have been eagerly anticipating Live Through This. It received a starred rev {This review was originally published on Clear Eyes, Full Shelves.} There’s something thrilling and even a bit nerve-wracking about reading the second novel by an author whose debut landed squarely on my True Book Love shelf. It’s thrilling because of the anticipation of hoping that book magic will happen all over again. Mindi Scott’s 2010 debut, Freefall, is a book I love dearly (Laura’s review pretty much nails it) so I have been eagerly anticipating Live Through This. It received a starred review on Kirkus, and the pre-publication buzz has been extremely positive. When I saw it on the shelf at Barnes & Noble and noble—a whole week early—I squealed far too loudly and sprinted to the register, breathlessly explaining to the BN employee who rang me about about how much I’ve been looking forward to this book, and how it’s not actually out until October 2nd, and how I’ve got to know Mindi after I read Freefall and how it got a Kirkus star—and isn’t it all just so exciting! Needless to say, the poor guy thought I was a nutjob. That evening, I cracked open the book at around 10:00p.m., intending to just read a couple chapters after a stressful day and head to bed. Almost instantly I was gripped by the harrowing (which is how Stephanie Perkins described it in the cover blurb, which could not be more apt) story of Coley, a 15-year old in the Seattle suburbs whose life seems perfect on the surface, but underneath is anything but. For years, Coley’s kept a secret, maintaining the image of the perfect dance team girl. When she starts kind of/sort of dating Reece, and he winds up spending a couple of days with her family on their ski trip to Whistler, B.C., and Coley’s carefully partitioned life starts to unravel. I don’t know how to fix this, or if it can be fixed. There’s too much to say. Too much I don’t know how to say. For over half of my life, I’ve been pretending… [spoiler removed] Reece keeps trying to put the pieces back together without having any idea what’s causing me to break. I couldn’t set Live Through This Down once started reading. Despite needing to be up early the next day, I stayed up past 1:00 a.m., because I was so gripped by Coley’s story, overwhelmed by a feeling of dread. The story is carefully crafted so I really didn’t know for sure who Coley’s abuser is until halfway through the book. Sure, there were signs, but I didn’t want it to be true. That’s the beauty of Live Through Through This—Coley’s abuser is someone she cares about, someone with whom she shares a history. I generally avoid books that appear to be “issue” books, especially in young adult fiction. They often seem too cut and dry, with the “bad guys” always seeming like pure evil. And, yes, their actions are terrible. However, the actual relationships are more complicated. Mindi shines a light on how unsimple the subject of abuse really is. She wrote a letter that was published in review copies and on her website about how the way abuse is usually portrayed, and how she wanted to show something different in Live Through This. This novel achieves that, letting Coley’s story be Coley’s experience in an authentic, nuanced manner. Live Through This also has some light, funny moments that shine—especially the scenes between Coley and her best buddy Noah, as do the sweet moments between Coley and Reece as they test the waters of the beginnings of a relationship. “This might be shaping up to be our best day ever now,” he says as we siver against each other. That’s what I wanted to hear. I look up at him. “Really? This is better than giraffes and ice cream?” “You don’t think so? With his face this close to mine, he’s just eyes, a nose and cheeks that are so pink form the cold, and upturned lips. I smile back so big, it almost hurts. “I’m going to have to think about that.” “Sure. Let me know what you decide.” This multi-dimensional exploration of Coley’s life makes Live Through This stand out; there is light along with the darkness in Coley’s life. That’s a critical point that distinguishes this book, because Coley is more than what has happened to her, more than the guilt that follows her. Ultimately, Live Through This is a very different book than Freefall, but there’s a common thread that runs through them both in terms of figuring out the path forward. (It’s hard not to make the comparison, especially since they’re set in the same town and there are two Seth references and Rosetta and Kendall mentions.) Like with Seth, the path forward isn’t easy and Coley’s decisions have consequences and the emotions are so real. Now I’m sorry. I am so, so sorry. A sob escapes my lips and Reece scoots closer. I throw my arms around him, rest my face against his chest. “It’s okay,” he says, rubbing my back as I cry. “You’re okay.” He’s so wrong and he has no idea. It’s totally unfair for me to put him through this; I know that it is. Still, I keep holding on. I keep soaking his shirt with my tears. I can’t make myself stop. There are so many little moments in Live Through This like this one. Moments that made me know that something is going to change, but I never felt confident in how they’d change until the very last page. FNL Character Rating: Pending a consultation with Laura, our FNL Character Rating Expert, who is inconveniently out of town and hasn’t been able to read the book yet. Disclosure: Mindi and I became friends when I Twitter stalked her after I read Freefall a couple of years ago and Laura and I hung out with her when she was in Portland earlier this year. Regardless of that, this review is my sincere opinion. Initial Reaction: Well that was an intense, one sitting read.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Glass

  5. 5 out of 5

    Juhina

    Live Through This starts off with a very scary chapter. It is a rape scene, or at least a sexually abusive scene in the middle of the night, happening in the room, in the bed, of the main protagonist, Coley. I was so freaked out. But the next chapter? it is like nothing has happened. I honestly thought it was a dream. Then she was acting weird around her family (her mom, half-sister, step father, and brother). I immediately thought her dad is the predator. I was suspicious and so confused becaus Live Through This starts off with a very scary chapter. It is a rape scene, or at least a sexually abusive scene in the middle of the night, happening in the room, in the bed, of the main protagonist, Coley. I was so freaked out. But the next chapter? it is like nothing has happened. I honestly thought it was a dream. Then she was acting weird around her family (her mom, half-sister, step father, and brother). I immediately thought her dad is the predator. I was suspicious and so confused because I still wasn't even sure if this is her imagination or actual facts. This book follows her struggles to have a normal life with normal friends and start a romance with her friend and crush Reece. This book gave me chills and I just couldn't read fast enough. I just wish there is a sequel or it didn't end where it ended. I needed more. That is why I gave it four out of five stars.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Isamlq

    3.5/5 Should I say that she's faking her way through high school? Consider that she's in the running for captain, with a couple of really good girl friends as well as that budding romance with one you’d not expect~ all the makings of a sweet YA contemp. This isn’t. A sweet YA contemporary, I mean. From page one, it’s obvious she’s living with this dark thing in her life, it’s the same thing that has her emotions all mixed up… on one hand feeling thing then on the other feeling something else. Int 3.5/5 Should I say that she's faking her way through high school? Consider that she's in the running for captain, with a couple of really good girl friends as well as that budding romance with one you’d not expect~ all the makings of a sweet YA contemp. This isn’t. A sweet YA contemporary, I mean. From page one, it’s obvious she’s living with this dark thing in her life, it’s the same thing that has her emotions all mixed up… on one hand feeling thing then on the other feeling something else. Interesting moments are the fact that it’s not the only thing going on with her: a busted friendship over some thoughtless words; a guy best friend, who reads too good to be true (and he proves it too, by having secrets of his own he’s not ready to face) and a budding romance with one so unlikely. Unlikely given who they are: she’s on the dance squad, he’s got his sax. And then the thing that pull them together? Too much knowledge of song lyrics and artists who sang them: adorable additions I thought, but not enough to disguise the fact that there’s a darker thing under it. Also, there are those lovely moment when I realize that some characters can still surprise me. They’re not who I pegged them at first. Alejandra’s a big case in point here. She’s not just the other popular girl with a problem with Coley. Their issues boil down to their former too close relationship that’s laced with a not surprising competitive side. Even Noah’s a little different because just because he’s a good guy most of the time doesn’t stop him from being an asshole sometimes. (Good guys aren’t good all the time.) Reece as already mentioned is cute, pure cotton candy on his part… sweet addition, I mean. But it’s everyone else that’s left me wondering. How oblivious everyone else is to what’s going on. She puts on an act, and acts so well that nobody knows what’s really going on, ‘til possibilities previously not considered arise then she finds harder and harder to deal. So we witness her go from girl popular to someone else. So, here we see a girl face up to what’s happening, face up to what a messed up and sad life she's living, (uncomfortable is the least of it.) That though you may not know the WHO early on, you do know the WHAT; that whilst all other "normal" things are happening, you wonder how she’s managing it at all. I don’t know what to say except this was a more difficult read than I was expecting. She is girl-perfect on the surface, but that's so far from her reality.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Ginger at GReadsBooks

    Originally posted at GReads: http://www.greadsbooks.com/2012/09/li... This book deals with a very tough subject: sexual abuse. But it's not the type of abuse you see flashed across the headlines or even think of when someone mentions those two gut-wrenching words. This form of sexual abuse is the kind that begins in a place of trust, love and loyalty. It evolves in to a form of confusion, betrayal and utter disbelief. I have never read a story that's been told this way. The idea that this actuall Originally posted at GReads: http://www.greadsbooks.com/2012/09/li... This book deals with a very tough subject: sexual abuse. But it's not the type of abuse you see flashed across the headlines or even think of when someone mentions those two gut-wrenching words. This form of sexual abuse is the kind that begins in a place of trust, love and loyalty. It evolves in to a form of confusion, betrayal and utter disbelief. I have never read a story that's been told this way. The idea that this actually exists; that someone out there is really living through this, breaks my heart. But the fact that Mindi Scott has found the courage to write about it, shines a bit of hope on to such a heartbreaking issue. The power of literature can be profound, and I feel that this novel has the capacity to go so much further than just the written word. Coley is the picture perfect teenage girl. She comes from a family that's busting at the seams, literally with 5 kids, and so much love. She is a part of her high school's dance team, complete with all her best friends. Her magnificent smile can light up a room; and capture the hearts of any boy. She is sweet, beautiful and talented. A total package wrapped up so nicely with the most perfect bow sitting on top. What she's hiding inside though, has the potential to rip her perfect package to shreds. It's a secret she isn't even capable of believing herself. Maybe if she closes her eyes, pretends she's asleep he won't touch her.... there. Maybe if she pretends it's the boy she likes at school, and not him.... it won't be so bad. These are the thoughts that liter Coley's mind. I found myself holding my breath, waiting to find out who the violator was. I kept expecting it to be this horrible monster. That is what we usually assume when someone is being victimized. However, in this case, the story is completely not what you'd expect. My heart went out to Coley, so many times. I saw the struggles she had at keeping the perfect face for the world to see, but I also saw the demons she fought within herself to keep that secret hidden. Coley's world became divided by fear and confusion. I commend Mindi Scott for giving life to a story that must not have been easy to write. Though the subject matter is tough to swallow, it still needs to be discussed. No one should be the victim to this type of abuse, no matter how confusing it may be. I highly encourage those to read this book for the beauty in it's writing, the rich characterization that follows Coley, and absolutely for the message it delivers in the end. Live Through This is a book that I will not be able to forget. I don't want to either. Coley's story is something that needs to be shared, understood and listened to. As I mentioned before, the power of literature can be so profound. Thank you Mindi for writing this story.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Justin Ordoñez

    Managed to get my hands on Live Through This a little bit early. I read it over a weekend and really got caught up in it. I think I just like the stories Mindi writes. They're straight-forward human dramas where the plot deals with the inter-connectivity of the characters and not space aliens or super powers or the like. Those are the kind of books I just find myself gravitating to time and time again, and if those are the type of books you like to read, I think you're gonna have yourself a more Managed to get my hands on Live Through This a little bit early. I read it over a weekend and really got caught up in it. I think I just like the stories Mindi writes. They're straight-forward human dramas where the plot deals with the inter-connectivity of the characters and not space aliens or super powers or the like. Those are the kind of books I just find myself gravitating to time and time again, and if those are the type of books you like to read, I think you're gonna have yourself a more than satisfying read with Live Through This. I don't like giving spoilers, so I won't, I'll just say that I was impressed with the author's development of the family dynamic. Coley is in a bit of a "Brady Bunch" situation, herself and her brother joined in with a step-father and three younger step-siblings. The contrasting behavior of Coley and her brother vs the younger siblings reflects their vastly different upbringings and experiences, and I think it's these subtle dynamics that really make the novel flow. The best scene is in the middle of the book when Coley visits a restaurant and overhears some girls in a bathroom saying something...... What plays out afterwards drives home so many of the dynamics driving these characters. It's not as "fun" as her previous novel, Freefall, where we followed Seth, a young man who's in a band about to go on tour, from on the wrong side of the tracks dating the rich girl from across town.... That novel played on and lived in a lot of classic storytelling and scandalizing elements. Live Through This is definitely the more sophisticated of the two, and the one with the clearer message and delivery. Big time party scenes are substituted for more intimate, one-on-one conversations between characters. Lots of the side drama (Coley is having problems with a girl on her dance team much like Seth from Freefall was struggling to get along with members in his band) remains a background plot in Live Through This, which I liked. We get the "tension" between characters that makes them feel real and engaging, but it doesn't read as filler. In addition, she's thinned out her prose and developed a super-efficiency with her sentences, managing to say a lot with very little, though I dare say we might soon have to tell her to use some self-indulgent and flowery prose every now and again! It's like chocolate, we all want it from time to time (at least I do). So I'd say everyone should get excited! Make sure to shelf this as "to-read" and then "currently-reading" and then "read." Mindi's shown here that she's gonna grow as author and her stories are going to grow with her, which is all the better for her readers.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Hannah McBride

    Can I first offer a huge standing ovation to Mindi Scott for tackling such a sensitive issue? A lot of authors would avoid subjects like incest, domestic abuse and domestic rape, but Scott took a huge risk here and wrote about it in Live Through This. That being said, I felt this book simply wasn’t long enough for everything going on inside. There was the sexual abuse, a burgeoning love story, a feud with a former-best friend, and a whole mess of family dynamics. There were a lot of sub-plots and Can I first offer a huge standing ovation to Mindi Scott for tackling such a sensitive issue? A lot of authors would avoid subjects like incest, domestic abuse and domestic rape, but Scott took a huge risk here and wrote about it in Live Through This. That being said, I felt this book simply wasn’t long enough for everything going on inside. There was the sexual abuse, a burgeoning love story, a feud with a former-best friend, and a whole mess of family dynamics. There were a lot of sub-plots and characters packed into this novel and I felt it watered down the plot significantly, to the point where I just never got a feel of who Coley was. Coley is a girl going through a horrific ordeal. She’s surviving the best way she can—by pushing the issue away and orchestrating this perfect façade. There were some chapters she even convinced me she was OK because of how well she was doing with things and how little the abuse was mentioned. This book is a quick read—I finished it in a day. I just felt like it was lacking something because so much of it felt scattered. And the ending really bothered me. I didn’t feel like there was any closure for me as the reader, but I also realize that in order for me to get that closure there would probably need to be a second book, or at least another 200 pages. I would recommend you check this out because 1) the subject matter is so crucial to bring into the light and 2) despite my lackluster review, this is getting crazy great reviews around the blogs. Maybe I would caution you to check it out of the library before buying.

  10. 4 out of 5

    tarawrawr

    Review originally posted on my blog http://hobbitsies.net/2012/09/live-th... Live Through This by Mindi Scott is an unbelievably stunning, heartbreaking story. I am amazed by Mindi Scott’s storytelling capabilities – I can’t even imagine writing a story like this and still being able to include the beautiful, fun, light moments in such a perfect way. Because Live Through This is an important and upsetting book. Sexual abuse is something that happens entirely too often, and the way Mindi Scott tell Review originally posted on my blog http://hobbitsies.net/2012/09/live-th... Live Through This by Mindi Scott is an unbelievably stunning, heartbreaking story. I am amazed by Mindi Scott’s storytelling capabilities – I can’t even imagine writing a story like this and still being able to include the beautiful, fun, light moments in such a perfect way. Because Live Through This is an important and upsetting book. Sexual abuse is something that happens entirely too often, and the way Mindi Scott tells Coley’s story is just…perfect. We have moments where we’re giddy with Coley over the dorky and cute Reese, or we’re laughing with Coley and her best friend Noah (who I love to death, FYI), but there’s also this heavy feeling while reading Live Through This that we realize Coley must feel all the time because of what’s happening to her. I was so tense while reading Live Through This – I loved the way Mindi Scott kept the identity of Coley’s abuser under wraps for a bit. I was tense and nervous and accusatory and my heart just broke when everything was revealed. It’s really hard for me to write a full review of Live Through This. Mindi Scott delivers a heart wrenching book that made me laugh and cry and want to curl up under the bed and hide from everyone. Live Through This is a beautiful contemporary that portrays an issue that ought to be brought to light more often.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Keertana

    Rating: 2.5 Stars I have very mixed feelings when it comes to Live Through This, but my most overwhelming emotion is simply disappointment. There is no denying that Scott's sophomore novel is a struggle to get through, full of emotion and nuanced writing that truly brings to light the psychological horrors of abuse, but at the same time, it could have been so much more. When the novel begins, Coley experiences a shocking moment – one that she wishes she shared with a boyfriend instead of her abus Rating: 2.5 Stars I have very mixed feelings when it comes to Live Through This, but my most overwhelming emotion is simply disappointment. There is no denying that Scott's sophomore novel is a struggle to get through, full of emotion and nuanced writing that truly brings to light the psychological horrors of abuse, but at the same time, it could have been so much more. When the novel begins, Coley experiences a shocking moment – one that she wishes she shared with a boyfriend instead of her abuser. It becomes very obvious that Coley’s abuser is someone very close to her, which makes her situation all the more complex. And yet, after this gripping scene, the next half of the novel is devoted to details of Coley’s every day life, from her dance practices to her blooming romance with a saxophone player, Reece, to a vacation she spends skiing. For me, this is possibly the weakest part of the novel. While I appreciated that Scott took the pains to paint for us the image of a seemingly normal girl who hid the truth of abuse and later shattered her life with her continued abuse, I felt strangely detached from the tale. Quite simply put, Coley did not capture me. I felt sympathy for her and her difficult position, but not much else. Coley and her elder brother, Bryan, have always stuck together ever since their mother re-married and gave birth to triplets, but I could never understand why Coley and Bryan detested their step-father the way they did. As far as evil step-fathers go, Tony doesn’t even deserve to be on the list. It was small aspects of the story like this one that simply didn’t connect together for me and I found myself questioning Coley more than I did immersing myself in her tale. And yet, I cannot deny that the manner in which Scott writes this story of abuse is raw and powerful. It is eerily frightening and honest, making this a novel that truly is for older readers. In addition to the carefully written plot line of abuse, though, I appreciated that Scott took the time to discuss sex and sexuality in this book, especially as it pertained to teenage girls. Instead of the classic sex discussion between girlfriends, Scott took it further to explore the idea that it is okay for girls to seek sexual pleasure – a concept that seems to elude most of YA and disappear amidst slut-shaming. Even the so-called “slut” or “anti-heroine” of this novel is explored in increasing depth, which increased my respect for this book immensely. Live Through This honestly has a lot to offer to readers, but its abrupt ending left me wanting more. It wasn’t enough for me to read about Coley’s situation and her journey into accepting that it was wrong, despite the fact that she cared for her abuser; I wanted to see Coley deal with the after effects too, not to mention her abuser as well. Not only did I finish this book with too many questions, but as I mentioned before, many small plot points didn’t connect together for me in the cogent way I wanted them too. In some ways, I believe there is too much in this story, from abuse to friendship issues to jealousy to best-friend-who-is-a-boy-but-just-a-friend…somehow, all of this didn’t connect in the seamless manner I wished. Thus, while Live Through This manages to be an excellent novel in terms of exploring an abusive relationship, it isn’t the perfect or emotionally-gutting book I was expecting. If you’re up for a read that is most certainly very different, though, in a mostly good way, then Live Through This is definitely for you.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Cassaundra C.

    Live Through This follows the life of Coley Sterling. Coley is the girl we all wish we could’ve been. She is attractive, her family is financially secure, she is a member of the school’s dance team, and she is in the midst of a budding romance. However, this book embodies the quote, “Don’t judge a book by it’s cover.” Someone who is closely integrated into Coley’s life is sexual assaulting her. We find this out within the first chapter of the book in a very graphic scene. This may be off-putting Live Through This follows the life of Coley Sterling. Coley is the girl we all wish we could’ve been. She is attractive, her family is financially secure, she is a member of the school’s dance team, and she is in the midst of a budding romance. However, this book embodies the quote, “Don’t judge a book by it’s cover.” Someone who is closely integrated into Coley’s life is sexual assaulting her. We find this out within the first chapter of the book in a very graphic scene. This may be off-putting to some, but I found it incredibly realistic and I really felt for Coley. No one should ever have to go through that kind of abuse. However, don’t get me wrong, the abuse is not the main focus of the novel. What Mindi Scott gives us is a heartbreaking story of an emotionally distraught teenager trying to make sense of the world. Throughout the novel, we are left wondering who the perpetrator that harms Coley is. We are also made aware of a falling out between Coley and her former best friend. Lastly, we lay witness to the internal struggles Coley faces in regards to her sexual life with Reece. There was a lot of suspense and it really drove the story. I found myself flying through the pages trying to figure out the mystery surrounding these struggles. Let’s talk about Reece for a second. Coley has developed a crush on him and he has also on her. We get to witness adorable exchanges between the two throughout the novel. One of my favorite parts of the novel was the little music lyric game they played together. One person would say a random lyric such as, “Romeo take me somewhere we can be alone,” and then the other will guess what song it is from. Each lyric is different and they range from straight up corny to adorable. This melted my heart! I would compare their relationship to Eleanor and Parks, they just work so well together. Also, the giraffe presents! Oof. Anyways, I loved them together! I cannot recommend this book enough. It’s not very often that I find a young adult book tackling such a sensitive issue and doing it well. This novel will keep you on the edge of your seat wondering what is going to happen next. I can’t explain how invested I was in Coley’s life. If you want a thought-provoking book with an adorable romance in between, this is your book.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Kelly

    3.5. Scott's sophomore novel starts with the worst possible scenario: someone is on top of Coley, taking advantage of her. We aren't sure who it is, but we know it's not the imaginary boyfriend Coley wished it were. From there, we're tossed into the everyday world of Coley as she navigates balancing dance team responsibilities with friendship obligations. There's also Reece, the boy who she's close with and with whom she'd like to be officially dating. It's when her family takes a winter vacation 3.5. Scott's sophomore novel starts with the worst possible scenario: someone is on top of Coley, taking advantage of her. We aren't sure who it is, but we know it's not the imaginary boyfriend Coley wished it were. From there, we're tossed into the everyday world of Coley as she navigates balancing dance team responsibilities with friendship obligations. There's also Reece, the boy who she's close with and with whom she'd like to be officially dating. It's when her family takes a winter vacation to Whistler and he's allowed -- after much debate -- to join for a small portion of the trip when things become more for them. But not before Coley's subjected to further abuse. Not before we find out who is doing this to her. This is a powerful and painful novel to read because it's quiet. Scott's subtle in how she portrays abuse -- Coley's a victim but she's also not entirely willing to admit it to herself. She bottles it and tries to go forward. She doesn't believe it's happening to her, especially because (view spoiler)[ she's thrown off by the fact her body reacts differently than she believes it should. As if losing control physically means she's lost control intellectually over what is being taken from her in both senses. (hide spoiler)] It's a slow build, and it's effective because of that. The hangup I have with the book is the ending felt rushed and almost a little too convenient. (view spoiler)[ Alejandra, a former friend of Coley who'd treated her pretty poorly, ends up being the person who finds out what's going on. The turn around was a little too quick for me on both of their ends. (hide spoiler)] The emotions ring true, and the writing and pacing is tight. It's not an easy read by any means. Longer review to come.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Courtney

    Okay, this book left me frustrated to no end. At the beginning I was sooooo confused. I understood the events, but I felt as if nothing major was happening. I felt this way for the majority of this book. I don't know if that makes sense, but I don't know how else to explain it. I also thought that the ENTIRE book was crazy rushed. All of the "major events" occured about 50% in the book, and because of this they happened at a very very fast pace. I didn't like that too much. And another thing, wh Okay, this book left me frustrated to no end. At the beginning I was sooooo confused. I understood the events, but I felt as if nothing major was happening. I felt this way for the majority of this book. I don't know if that makes sense, but I don't know how else to explain it. I also thought that the ENTIRE book was crazy rushed. All of the "major events" occured about 50% in the book, and because of this they happened at a very very fast pace. I didn't like that too much. And another thing, what was with that ending!?!? It just ended. If that makes any sense what so ever. Like, I wanted to know how Coley's mom reacted to the big secret. I wanted to know what happened to her family, or to Bryan. How did Reece take the news, and did Bryan ever abuse Emma??! ? There were sooo many unanswered questions. I AM SO FRUSTRATED!!! And what was the point of Reece. He seemed like such an insignificant character to me. He was there, but he seemed to have no real purpose. So basically, for this book to make ANY sense, or for it to get ANY better, it needs to have a sequel. However, I don't see that happening. I was really mad at the author because once I found out what Coley's secret was, I really liked the idea behind the book. I've never read a book with this story before, and I don't think I ever will again. So, the fact that the story was told in such a poor manor (in my opinion), really made me angry. From this book I got absolutely nothing. I could go on and on about what I didn't like about this book, so I'll just stop now.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Paige (Illegal in 3 Countries)

    NOPE. NU-UH. I'm not mad this is a book wherein Coley is a victim of incest from her older brother Bryan. I care that it's poorly written. No foreshadowing in her interactions with him, no hints that something might not be right whenever he comes up or he's acting odd, NOTHING. I've been in a situation similar to hers. My brother's best friend, whom I also thought of as a brother at the time, molested me in my sleep when I was 12 and I woke up during it. It took me six months to tell my family and NOPE. NU-UH. I'm not mad this is a book wherein Coley is a victim of incest from her older brother Bryan. I care that it's poorly written. No foreshadowing in her interactions with him, no hints that something might not be right whenever he comes up or he's acting odd, NOTHING. I've been in a situation similar to hers. My brother's best friend, whom I also thought of as a brother at the time, molested me in my sleep when I was 12 and I woke up during it. It took me six months to tell my family and a year to tell my brother. He has remained my brother's best friend to this day and he even lived with us for a few months. Even when I interacted peaceably with him, the inside of my head was a horrific place and I dreamed up all sorts of ways to make him hurt. Hoping there was an accident in boot camp, harming him myself, wishing his submarine would sink that one time it was in danger--my thoughts were in a vicious place because his betrayal did that to me. It was how I coped with not getting justice or support from my family. Nothing like that is going on in Coley's head. The first chapter is him sexually assaulting her, nothing is remarked on or further hinted at for another 150 pages, and then it happens again. It feels like incest is being used for a twist and I fucking hate it. Coley doesn't have to act exactly like me, I just want her to act like an actual human being.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Sabrine

    I hated this book so much! I hated every single character, mostly Reece and Coley. My gosh I hated them all!!!!!!!!!!! I only liked Noah and Emma and Jacob and Zach, the others were just plain dumb. The relationship between Reece and Coley was too rushed. Coley also was so stupid and insecure with her decisions, like seriously if your brother is doing that to you do something! Don't just cry in a corner, HONESTLY! This book lacked suspense, romance, and mystery. Heck, this book lacked EVERYTHING I hated this book so much! I hated every single character, mostly Reece and Coley. My gosh I hated them all!!!!!!!!!!! I only liked Noah and Emma and Jacob and Zach, the others were just plain dumb. The relationship between Reece and Coley was too rushed. Coley also was so stupid and insecure with her decisions, like seriously if your brother is doing that to you do something! Don't just cry in a corner, HONESTLY! This book lacked suspense, romance, and mystery. Heck, this book lacked EVERYTHING! Worst book I read in my life! I could have read a much better book but I wasted my time reading this chizz.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Cassie

    To be honest, I'm feeling pretty weird right now because of this book. I had some assumptions at first, about the person, but I was so, so wrong. And what I thought I thought the book was about? DEAD WRONG. Is it weird to rate a book 4 stars but feel weird about it? Well I guess not, because I just did it. But..... just wow. To be honest, I'm feeling pretty weird right now because of this book. I had some assumptions at first, about the person, but I was so, so wrong. And what I thought I thought the book was about? DEAD WRONG. Is it weird to rate a book 4 stars but feel weird about it? Well I guess not, because I just did it. But..... just wow.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Eilonwy

    15-year-old Coley Sterling has a "perfect" life: Since her mother escaped an abusive marriage 10 years earlier, Coley lives in a secure family with her older brother and younger triplet half-siblings; she's likely to be voted captain of her high school's dance team both her junior and senior years (although that would be more likely without the recent rift between her and her former best friend); and she's started dating her first boyfriend. But Coley has a history which threatens to bring her w 15-year-old Coley Sterling has a "perfect" life: Since her mother escaped an abusive marriage 10 years earlier, Coley lives in a secure family with her older brother and younger triplet half-siblings; she's likely to be voted captain of her high school's dance team both her junior and senior years (although that would be more likely without the recent rift between her and her former best friend); and she's started dating her first boyfriend. But Coley has a history which threatens to bring her whole perfect world crashing down, despite all her practice at keeping things normal.This is not a book I would normally choose, but I read an interview with the author where she talked about how this story was drawn from her own experience, and I was so impressed with her guts at being willing to tell it that I wanted to read the book. So I'll tell you here that Coley is being sexually abused, but not by who you might guess -- and she's very confused, because she feels a huge sense of loyalty to her abuser, and because it doesn't feel bad in the ways she thinks it should. This was a very good read, well-written and powerful. The author did a great job of weaving Coley's confusion, and her alternating confidence and debilitating shame, through the story line. In addition, except for the abuser, the other characters were all very well fleshed out and had interests, aspirations, and their own agendas which clearly extended beyond Coley and outside of this book. I zoomed through it in a couple of days, and found myself pulled right into the story every time I picked it up. I'm not sure I can say I "enjoyed" it, because of the subject matter, but I definitely admire it. Spoiler: (view spoiler)[The identity of Coley's abuser is kept secret through the first half of the book, but I guessed who it was from the author interview and read the spoilery reviews on Goodreads to make sure I was right, and I'm not sure it hurt the story at all to know that it's Bryan, Coley's full brother, and it's been going on since she was seven and he was eleven. It's all too easy to see how it started and why she's reluctant/afraid to stop it: When the triplets were born, the two older kids' rooms were moved to the basement, out of sight and hearing of the adults, and after the trauma of living with their abusive natural father and then being shunted aside for the new babies, it falls to Bryan to comfort and take care of his little sister when she has nightmares. Some Goodreads reviewers have asked how the parents couldn't notice, but in my experience, parents of one baby tend to be pretty oblivious, and multiples absolutely take over your life; and kids tend to be very good at keeping secrets they think their parents would rather not know. So this rang chillingly true to me. The adults aren't bad, or deliberately clueless. They're just busy. I'm not entirely sure why the abuser's identity was kept secret. The book opens with a fairly explicit scene, and then lets the reader assume it's probably the stepfather for the next 150 or so pages, which didn't strike me as quite fair to him. And the difficulty of the story is that Coley has been free from her brother for the past four months, while he's been at college on the far side of the country, and it's his return for winter break, just as things are heating up with her new boyfriend, that really upsets the careful facade she's created, and makes her realize she *can't* live through this any longer. (hide spoiler)] I might recommend this book for older teens and adults, but it is a difficult story to read, and pretty squicky (this seems to be a signature for the Simon Pulse imprint: sexy but very, very uncomfortable!). On the other hand, it has some contacts at the end for victims of incest, so there may be younger kids out there who really need this book. So ... read at your own risk. But it is a good book.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Elaine

    Two what-the-fuck stars What the fuck? This was the question I literally couldn't stop repeating through the entire book. So, Nicole, A.K.A. Coley, has a pretty "normal" life. Or so everyone thinks. She has a secret, which only one of her friends know. Sorta. She doesn't know what to do. Confusion, shame, sadness, anger. Those are the feelings that, somehow, rule her life. What will she do about that? Keep her facade or speak? Okay so what I thought of this book was that, okay I know that there are b Two what-the-fuck stars What the fuck? This was the question I literally couldn't stop repeating through the entire book. So, Nicole, A.K.A. Coley, has a pretty "normal" life. Or so everyone thinks. She has a secret, which only one of her friends know. Sorta. She doesn't know what to do. Confusion, shame, sadness, anger. Those are the feelings that, somehow, rule her life. What will she do about that? Keep her facade or speak? Okay so what I thought of this book was that, okay I know that there are books dedicated to abuse and stuff, but jeez, idk if it was because it was on first p.o.v. or whatever, but when I read it, it was like that didn't affect too much the main character. Through the entire book I was like "what the fuck is going on?" When I was reading the first chapter (view spoiler)[I was like, okay I like it, because I saw what happened to the girl somehow did affect her. (hide spoiler)] Then while I was reading the rest of the chapters I was like (view spoiler)["Wasn't she abused or something? What the hell happened?" I mean literally she stopped talking and thinking about that! Okay, moving forward with the book she started talking about this thing again, so yeah I was like "yeah girl you can't ignore it, you have to do something about it", but by then I wanted to know who the abuser was! Her step-father wasn't because she wasn't nervous about it. Her father either because he disappeared from the face of the earth. But then I was like "would it be her brother?" But then nah! She's acting so normal around him. It was like more than the half of the book and then FINALLY, FUCKING FINALLY, she said his name! (view spoiler)[It was her brother (hide spoiler)] But then she was like with mixed feelings about him. Also, her friends! She kissed her guy best friend (while she had a boyfriend) to make him confess he was gay. Really nigga? (no offense to anyone, it's just an expression) Can't you just ask him and tell him he can trust you? Then her ex-best friend became practically her enemy... Then her best friend again. She confessed everything to her. Then what? Nothing. Her boyfriend... He was sweet, but she never told A N Y T H I N G to him. He just though she kinda freaked out sometimes because of her abusing father, who she hadn't seen in years... He never knew anything... Nothing. Nada. God, it didn't frustrate me, it angered me! Then the end... *sighs* What the fuck? That was it? No more? Just "mom, there is something I need to tell you."? WHAT THE FUCK? How about an epilogue or something? What happened with the guy? So many questions! (hide spoiler)] So yeah, two what-the-fuck stars.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Estelle

    [ Review originally posted on Rather Be Reading Blog ] Whoa, whoa, whoa. Here, folks, is the kind of writing I yearn for. Mindi Scott injects a very serious situation into the life of a typical teenager. Family and friends exist. School and boys and ex-best friends. There are parties and alcohol, and family vacations. All of this makes up so much of the novel — all the normal stuff — that as a reader, it’s like the serious situation is not happening. It’s mere fantasy. It is buried beneath that w [ Review originally posted on Rather Be Reading Blog ] Whoa, whoa, whoa. Here, folks, is the kind of writing I yearn for. Mindi Scott injects a very serious situation into the life of a typical teenager. Family and friends exist. School and boys and ex-best friends. There are parties and alcohol, and family vacations. All of this makes up so much of the novel — all the normal stuff — that as a reader, it’s like the serious situation is not happening. It’s mere fantasy. It is buried beneath that whole waking up every day and living until… it takes over like some monster that has been hidden under the bed. And it’s real. It is so real. If you visit the author’s website or you check out other reviews of this title, you’re going to find out the situation I speak of is sexual abuse. And unlike movies I’ve seen or other books I’ve read, this type of abuse is different. It’s not violent. It’s not angry. And as if this “relationship” Coley is involved in is not complicated enough, this behavior and her own reactions to it make her feel low and angry and confused. She also doesn’t want to imagine the fate of the person who is abusing her. That’s right… for half the book (at least) this person is a total mystery. The author’s choice to do this quadrupled the impact when we finally do find out. Despite the seriousness and the shock, the momentum in Live Through This pushes you forward with every page. I could not put it down, and wouldn’t until I finished. (It took me one day to read it.) I wondered what Coley would do, how far things would get, and if the other conflicts in her life were in direct relation to what was going on at home. Even though all the good in her life was good, REALLY good, it was not enough to overshadow the pain or make her forget. This is a breaking point we see and Mindi pulls off well. She’s a brave writer with a stark style that blends emotion and action and environment in just the right manner. And the details are not forgotten: Coley’s cute song game with Reese, her half-sister’s quirks, traditions with old friends. She really paints a whole picture and all the shades of gray that make up Coley’s life and help us to better understand her plight and the choices she must make.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Shannon

    Wow. Mindi Scott floors me with her talent. Her novels are so layered and complex - just so real. Her first book FREEFALL is one of my very favorite reads, not just in YA, but in the universe of fiction. I was afraid she wouldn't be able to live up to such a fantastic first novel, but LIVE THROUGH THIS was incredible in its own right. There's a period in the beginning where the reader is in the dark, having an idea but not really knowing for sure so you may think the plot isn't moving fast enoug Wow. Mindi Scott floors me with her talent. Her novels are so layered and complex - just so real. Her first book FREEFALL is one of my very favorite reads, not just in YA, but in the universe of fiction. I was afraid she wouldn't be able to live up to such a fantastic first novel, but LIVE THROUGH THIS was incredible in its own right. There's a period in the beginning where the reader is in the dark, having an idea but not really knowing for sure so you may think the plot isn't moving fast enough because you JUST WANT TO KNOW WHAT'S HAPPENING. But by 1/3 of the way in, I couldn't put it down. Scott has this talent that most authors just reach and reach for, never really obtaining it: the ability to create characters that are so real, kids you may know in your own life who yank you in and before you know it, you are so far invested and care so much about what is happening to them. She keeps you questioning, continually asking yourself the questions the characters are facing, a lot of times without the slightest clue what you would do in their situation. While the subject matter of this one is tough, it's such a wonderfully written story that I think older teens should read it(and adults alike). Don't read what it's about - just read it! "I don’t know how to fix this, or if it can be fixed. There’s too much to say. Too much I don’t know how to say. For over half of my life, I’ve been pretending… [spoiler removed] Reece keeps trying to put the pieces back together without having any idea what’s causing me to break."

  22. 4 out of 5

    Tiffany (About to Read)

    Live Through This is one of those stories that will stay with me forever. I was expecting a psychological thriller about a girl who weaved a web of lies, and well, it was psychological—but not in a way that I ever would have imagined. While the jacket description is true to the story, it really doesn’t prepare you for what’s inside. The author’s note at the beginning of the ARC did prepare me, however, and I’m glad it did. Knowing that this story involves an abusive relationship didn’t ruin it fo Live Through This is one of those stories that will stay with me forever. I was expecting a psychological thriller about a girl who weaved a web of lies, and well, it was psychological—but not in a way that I ever would have imagined. While the jacket description is true to the story, it really doesn’t prepare you for what’s inside. The author’s note at the beginning of the ARC did prepare me, however, and I’m glad it did. Knowing that this story involves an abusive relationship didn’t ruin it for me. It made the story more real and more touching. I was still surprised along the way, and it’s so hard to truly comprehend the story that I read because of how shocking it was. The characters are well done, the feelings are great, and the book has such an intense ending. It is extremely well written and I truly hope that many people will read this. I was touched by Scott’s story. As great as the writing and the pacing are, however, all of this really is secondary to the message. Heartbreaking and twisted, Live Through This is a story you will never forget. It deals with an issue that is not often tackled by today’s media, but deserves to be understood nonetheless. I truly hope this novel helps people like Coley to deal with their demons and understand that even though it is confusing, they are victims and nothing is their fault.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Liz

    As we all know, when April from Good Books and Good Wine recommends a book, I will purchase it almost immediately afterwards. I had been hesitant to try Mindi Scott’s books because they just didn’t look like something that would satisfy me in terms of literary quality, but I bumped this one to the top of my TBR pile. Live Through This tackles a difficult subject reasonably successfully, but overall I just thought it needed more. To me, Coley read like a girl who could exist in any suburban, uppe As we all know, when April from Good Books and Good Wine recommends a book, I will purchase it almost immediately afterwards. I had been hesitant to try Mindi Scott’s books because they just didn’t look like something that would satisfy me in terms of literary quality, but I bumped this one to the top of my TBR pile. Live Through This tackles a difficult subject reasonably successfully, but overall I just thought it needed more. To me, Coley read like a girl who could exist in any suburban, upper middle class in America. So did every other character in the book, and everything about Coley’s life. When I read about the things she was going through, I felt bad for her, but a sense of urgency wasn’t there for me. I wasn’t desperately rooting for Coley to work things out and get better because to me, her feelings of anxiety and hurt just weren’t totally clear. Lots of people have enjoyed this one, so it’s hard to pin down why it didn’t work for me. I thin it’s because I was hoping for something truly outstanding, but felt as though I picked up just another run of the mill book. THE FINAL VERDICT: If tough contemporaries are your niche, I think Scott may satisfy you. Personally I just feel as though I’ve read tough contemporaries that are more beautifully written and more compelling plotwise.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Chrissie

    Live Through This is a YA issue book that brings light to something that isn't discussed often. Fifteen year old Coley has been hiding her brother's sexual abuse of her since the age of seven. She' racked with guilt and self disgust over not being able to tell anyone about the abuse and her body's response to the behavior. Her relationship with her new boyfriend suffers over the experience and she falls into panic as the abuse and gets worse and her little sister's safety is called into question Live Through This is a YA issue book that brings light to something that isn't discussed often. Fifteen year old Coley has been hiding her brother's sexual abuse of her since the age of seven. She' racked with guilt and self disgust over not being able to tell anyone about the abuse and her body's response to the behavior. Her relationship with her new boyfriend suffers over the experience and she falls into panic as the abuse and gets worse and her little sister's safety is called into question. I liked that is so Coley felt like a typical girl. Although the abuse was a solid part of who she was, it didn't completely define her. She was still a complete person with interests and friends. Coley lost a bit of my respect when she begun to doubt her nine year old sister's safety but still didn't tell anyone. The book's main drawbacks consisted primarily of a lack of plot. Time passed where Coley experienced her abuse and attempted to avoid it. There wasn't much meat to the story. The story avoided any of the day to day high school life outside of dance practice, which worked in its favor. The biggest frustration was that the ending was so abrupt that it left too many unanswered questions. The author did make it clear that Coley wasn't at fault for her abuse, and that her confusion didn't make Bryan's actions any less despicable, which is a valuable lesson on the issue.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Jessi

    This book takes a sensitive subject and deals with it in an incredibly intelligent, sensitive, and realistic way. Coley keeps the secret of the inappropriate relationship she has against her will while on the side maintaining what appears to be a perfectly normal and perfectly good life, with the people closest to her having no idea as to what is going on. Coley is in denial, forcing herself to believe that nothing really horrible or bad is happening to her. Yet on a family ski trip when her crus This book takes a sensitive subject and deals with it in an incredibly intelligent, sensitive, and realistic way. Coley keeps the secret of the inappropriate relationship she has against her will while on the side maintaining what appears to be a perfectly normal and perfectly good life, with the people closest to her having no idea as to what is going on. Coley is in denial, forcing herself to believe that nothing really horrible or bad is happening to her. Yet on a family ski trip when her crush comes to visit, it becomes completely obvious to her that she can't continue living this way even has she has no idea how to get out of the cycle she has been placed in. Everything in her normal life begins to spiral out of control once she accepts that she can't live this way. She has to open up to someone about This is a very important, very well done book that chills you with its premise and chillingly realistic prose.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Liza Wiemer

    Live Through This was recommended to me by Melissa Montovani of YA Bookshelf. She warned me that it would be a tough book, but well worth it. And she was right. I knew to expect something serious, but I had no idea it was going to be quite like this. Mindi Scott did a good job keeping the reader guessing and building up the intensity of the situation. SPOILER ALERT: DON'T READ FURTHER UNLESS YOU WANT TO: This novel deals with sexual abuse and incest. It's tough, it's important, it's graphic. But Live Through This was recommended to me by Melissa Montovani of YA Bookshelf. She warned me that it would be a tough book, but well worth it. And she was right. I knew to expect something serious, but I had no idea it was going to be quite like this. Mindi Scott did a good job keeping the reader guessing and building up the intensity of the situation. SPOILER ALERT: DON'T READ FURTHER UNLESS YOU WANT TO: This novel deals with sexual abuse and incest. It's tough, it's important, it's graphic. But I definitely believe that this novel will help YA who are experiencing a similar situation and give him or her the courage to stop it. Mindi was courageous for writing this novel and sharing the journey of Coley, the girl who was abused. Powerful, memorable.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Jim

    What a beautiful novel. It seems so often when books and TV and movies deal with abuse, they focus on the message. There's absolutely nothing wrong with that--there is an important message to get out there--but that approach so often simplifies the emotions, the reality. What I thought was so amazing about Mindi's novel is how real it felt. Mindi just had this perfect pitch handling of Coley's emotions. I loved Mindi's first novel, _Freefall_ but now reading this one it's like I had seen a magic What a beautiful novel. It seems so often when books and TV and movies deal with abuse, they focus on the message. There's absolutely nothing wrong with that--there is an important message to get out there--but that approach so often simplifies the emotions, the reality. What I thought was so amazing about Mindi's novel is how real it felt. Mindi just had this perfect pitch handling of Coley's emotions. I loved Mindi's first novel, _Freefall_ but now reading this one it's like I had seen a magician do a really cool coin trick, and then suddenly for their second trick they reach behind my ear and pull out three tractor trailers and an elephant. Beautiful novel.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Holly *Confessions of a Lit Chick*

    From the very first chapter it opens with the main character being sexually abused. Sexual abuse is a very touchy yet important subject. Through out this book I felt sickened by what the character goes through, uncomfortable, and at times sweaty palmed. Mindi Scott was very good at projecting her main characters thoughts and emotions upon her readers. This is in no way a pleasant read. Unfortunately, I felt Scott's relationships between her characters were rushed and certain things were thrown in From the very first chapter it opens with the main character being sexually abused. Sexual abuse is a very touchy yet important subject. Through out this book I felt sickened by what the character goes through, uncomfortable, and at times sweaty palmed. Mindi Scott was very good at projecting her main characters thoughts and emotions upon her readers. This is in no way a pleasant read. Unfortunately, I felt Scott's relationships between her characters were rushed and certain things were thrown in because the writer was running out of words or time.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Jen

    5 INTENSE, AMAZING stars! **Please note- I have chosen to keep this review vague as to not give anything away :) ** From the first Chapter I thought I had the book figured out....the exact intention Mindi Scott had when she wrote the book. I read this in one sitting and become so absorbed I couldn't put it down. Once you hit a certain point, and you will know when you read this book, something snaps into place and you get so drawn in you can't help but devour the rest. I look forward to reading an 5 INTENSE, AMAZING stars! **Please note- I have chosen to keep this review vague as to not give anything away :) ** From the first Chapter I thought I had the book figured out....the exact intention Mindi Scott had when she wrote the book. I read this in one sitting and become so absorbed I couldn't put it down. Once you hit a certain point, and you will know when you read this book, something snaps into place and you get so drawn in you can't help but devour the rest. I look forward to reading anything and everything from this talented author. Well done!

  30. 5 out of 5

    Jess at Such a Novel Idea

    I have mixed emotions about Live Through This. Overall, I really liked the book. There were some things that felt rushed and confusing, but I think the subject was tackled well. There were lots of layers to the book and it was worth it to keep peeling those things back. I would have liked to see how things turned out after the truth came out. Overall, this dark subject was handled tactfully, but I feel the author could have drawn the plot out more to put it over a 3 star book.

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