My Copy: ARC PDF eBook, 322 pages
Original Publication Date: May 7, 2013 (tomorrow!)
Publisher: Gallery Books
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Lizzie wasn’t the first student at Verity High School to kill herself this year. But the difference is, she didn’t go quietly.
First it was SLUT scribbled all over the school’s lockers. But one week after Lizzie Hart takes her own life, SUICIDE SLUT replaces it — in Lizzie’s own looping scrawl. Photocopies of her diary show up in the hands of her classmates. And her best friend, Angie is enraged.
Angie had stopped talking to Lizzie on prom night, when she caught Lizzie in bed with her boyfriend. Too heartbroken to let Lizzie explain the hookup or to intervene when Lizzie gets branded Queen of the Sluts and is cruelly bullied by her classmates, Angie left her best friend to the mercy of the school, with tragic results.
But with this new slur, Angie’s guilt transforms into anger that someone is still targeting Lizzie even after death. Using clues from Lizzie’s diary and aided by the magnetic, mysterious Jess, Angie begins relentlessly investigating who, exactly, made Lizzie feel life was no longer worth living. And while she might claim she simply want to punish Lizzie’s tormentors, her anguish over abandoning and then losing her best friend drives Angie deeper into the dark, twisted side of Verity Hight — and she might not be able to pull herself back out.
Debut author Chelsea Pitcher daringly depicts the harsh reality of modern high school, where one bad decision can ruin a reputation, and one cruel word can ruin a life. Angie’s quest for the truth behind Lizzie’s suicide is addictive and thrilling, and her razor-sharp wit and fierce sleuthing skills makes her impossible not to root for — even when it becomes clear that both avenging Lizzie and avoiding self-destruction might not be possible.
So, The S-Word started off very boring and as a seemingly pointless story, in my opinion. It was one of those books that threatened to put me to sleep. I could not sit down for too long and read it without getting very tired. However, it did get better as it went on. Near the end, I didn’t even want to put it down. There was so much happening and quite a few twists and turns (though, some were predictable and I saw coming), that I needed to keep reading to find everything out.
The book is narrated in first person by Angie. Angie has been through a rough year; she lost her boyfriend of 4 years and her best friend that she had known almost her whole life. Last year, on prom night, Angie walked in on her best friend, Lizzie, and her boyfriend cheating on her in the hotel room. After this instance, Angie could no longer deal with either of them and the rest of the school branded Lizzie a slut. As a result, Lizzie ends up committing suicide. This leaves Angie feeling sad, guilty, and angry. Her way of coping with Lizzie’s death is by playing detective to try to find out what exactly happened and who the culprit of the written words on Lizzie’s locker was.
Overall, the story was okay. As I said, the first bit bored me, but then the last bit enthralled me. The whole story seemed very high school — which it was, but as an adult I didn’t feel as though I was able to fully connect with the childish ways of these characters. I think this book is better for a younger audience. I also didn’t feel that emotions were emitted very well. I mean, for the first half(ish) part of the novel, I felt as though Angie was devoid of any emotion. I did not feel any strong emotions coming off of her character until later in the book. With this type of storyline, shouldn’t the reader feel some very strong emotions from this narrator? Well, I didn’t…but maybe that is something that was fixed for the final version that hits stores tomorrow?