Bad Romance: {ARC Review}

Publication Date: June 13th, 2017
Publisher: Henry Holt & Co.
Series: None
Format: Paperback ARC, 368 pages
Source: ALAMW

Grace wants out. Out of her house, where her stepfather wields fear like a weapon and her mother makes her scrub imaginary dirt off the floors. Out of her California town, too small to contain her big city dreams. Out of her life, and into the role of Parisian artist, New York director—anything but scared and alone.

Enter Gavin: charming, talented, adored. Controlling. Dangerous. When Grace and Gavin fall in love, Grace is sure it's too good to be true. She has no idea their relationship will become a prison she's unable to escape. 

Deeply affecting and unflinchingly honest, this is a story about spiraling into darkness—and emerging into the light again.

I had a love/hate relationship with this book. For one, I loved it because of how real and raw it was. On the other hand, I hated it because I experienced a relationship/marriage just like the one from the book. 

It was really hard to read about what Grace was going through because I experienced some of it. The manipulation, sweet talking, kind gestures, accusations of cheating, isolation from family and friends, etc. were all things that I experienced, and are things that happen in the book. 

You will feel sorry for Grace, because she has never known a good relationship and when she meets Gavin, she thinks he is heaven on Earth until he's not. It's a vicious cycle, because they will always apologize after they hurt you, and you love them so you will always go back and swear they won't do it again. 

Bad Romance should be required reading for everyone in high school, because it is important to recognize this type of toxic relationship and for the reader to know that they deserve so much more than that. Nobody deserves to be treated the way Grace was treated by Gavin. Also, it can be really hard to get out of that kind of relationship because you might feel guilty or think that a person can change. 

One of my gripes about the book was how nobody thought to ask Gavin's ex-girlfriend about him before he and Grace got together. They just all assumed that she was a terrible person for dumping him.  If I had known who my ex would date, I would have sought her out and told her all of the horrible things that he did, and how he was a terrible person. I know it's not realistic for everyday life, but Grace and his ex were in a class together, so I don't think that it would be that unrealistic for Grace and her friends to get the lowdown about him from her. 

Bad Romance is one of those books that will stick to you, because there are so many people that can relate to it. It might have brought back unpleasant memories for me, but it is such an important book for young women (and men) to read so that they know they deserve so much better. 

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