NEVER SAID by Carol Lynch Williams

NEVER SAID by Carol Lynch WilliamsNever Said by Carol Lynch Williams
Published by Blink on August 25th 2015
Pages: 308
Genres: Fiction, Young Adult
ARC provided by BookSparks

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Annie and Sarah are fifteen-year-old fraternal twins who only spend time together because they're under the same roof. Annie's life has long been focused around her appearance and the beauty pageants that celebrate it, whereas Sarah's interests are sports and her runner boyfriend, Jeremy.

Then Annie begins to gain more and more weight, and all she seems to hear from her mother is, You used to be so pretty, followed by the latest diet to try.

Things begin to unravel for Sarah as well. Jeremy her boyfriend of more than a year decides to see if he and Sarah are "right" for each other, dumping her in order to get his head on straight.

Sarah is devastated. Her family is crumbling. The love of her life is dating other people. Her sister is getting heavier and more depressed. When Sarah learns, through gentle questioning, that a neighbor and very good family friend has been sexually abusing her sister, she knows she must act and help the sister who seemingly always had it all.

Told in alternating points of view, Never Said is the story of a family that has been caught up in what doesn't matter and about two sisters who realize that their relationship no matter how different the two of them are is most important."

The book Never Said is about 17-year old fraternal twins, Sarah and Annie, who have drifted apart since their childhood. Annie was the family’s stunning beauty since the first time she entered her first pageant when the girls were young, but now Annie is different then her once usually glamorous self. She has become a quiet recluse and has drastically changed her appearance. Sarah on the other hand, has had this crippling anxiety disorder since the second grade that has made it difficult to communicate and express herself to other people. The parents of these clearly well children? They are as blind as most teenage parents believe their parents are! The family itself seems to have centered itself around Annie, her happiness, her success, and her wants.  And with Sarah as the protagonist it really puts things into perspective how unfair things can be sometimes.

The setting is pretty generically written however, one part of it got to me. The girls are going back to school after what I would assume is winter break and then the older twin just looks to the other one day and says, “Yo sis, I wanna make a club, for pretty much everyone who feels like they’re different and just want to be accepted, can you help me?” and then the other goes “Omg sis, you speak at last!! Of course I will help you!“, (okay she didn’t say that but I feel like that’s what happened if they were to reflect on it). The one thing that sticks out to me most about this is well, you shouldn’t start clubs more than half way through the year when exams and other big tests are around the corner. I mean I go to high school and that club would probably do terribly unless they have food and even then you’d probably have to pay money for this club that’s supposed to be a feel good club.

The parents are legitimately written like all teenagers see they’re parents; the mom doesn’t listen and doesn’t seem to care to either listen or understand, and the dad would totally agree with the quote “ignorance is bliss, ’tis folly to be wise” because he just doesn’t want to acknowledge any problems in the family till they’re in his frick-frack’in face. The dad also seems to be kinda brutally blunt at some points like dads and parents can be, so much that you can feel the way his words kinda hurt Sarah, but never intentionally.

Seeing as this book is YA there is a bit of romance but that is not the center conflict or plot. Sarah goes through this break up after dating this guy for 11 months, no specific reason why 

View Spoiler » and has to go through the heart break all by herself. She has no mom to ask why Garret (Her Ex) isn’t stopping by anymore, no dad to (jokingly) say “I can beat him up for you if you’d like..” or even a sister to hug her on her bad days, it takes her sister two months to even fracking comment on the break up. Wtf she was doing before then since she’s been out of work an pageants for like the past six months god knows, but poor ol’ Sarah was left to go through her first heart break all by her self.

Okay, and through out the book we learn that Annie has been altering her appearance since her beauty queen days but the cause is sort of unknown why until the end where we get like a vague answer as to why. Like the entire time I was being built up and my curiosity was growing as to what the secret was, but at the end I was finally told why. I don’t know, it felt rushed? I mean the book itself is like 303 pages and takes place over like a week? A week and a half? Anyway, Annie just stopped holding onto the secret she had been holding on to since her appearance started to change. And then BLAM she just puts all out there?

My Rating

3 stars

About Carol Lynch Williams

Carol Lynch Williams is the author of young adult novels including Miles from Ordinary and The Chosen One, which was named one of 2010 ALA's "Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers" and "Best Books for Young Adult Readers." It also won the Whitney and the Association of Mormon Letters awards for the best young adult fiction of the year, as well as numerous other honors. Williams was the winner of the 2009 PEN/Phyllis Naylor Working Writer Fellowship and the 2013 Whitney Award for Outstanding Achievement. She grew up in Florida and now lives in Utah.

I received this product free of charge in exchange for an honest review. This post contains affiliate links. This review is in compliance with the FTC guidelines.

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