Oh goodness, where to begin?
I think first, I'll admit to feeling like I have been duped. "Had" by a love-bombing campaign perhaps? Who knows... Let's just say when I bought The Edge of Never based on some random reviews, I was not expecting what I actually got. I was expecting an emotional journey. Something "into the wild"-ish. To cry, perhaps. No, not perhaps, I was definitely expecting to cry. The reviews promised much crying to be had! I wasn't expecting... this...
The Edge of Never is about a girl, Camryn, who meets a boy, Andrew, while running away from her problems on bus through America. Andrew has stuff of his own to deal with, but they find a connection and agree to a road trip together while they figure stuff out.
I should have seen the signs...
My first clue should have been that this book was on a 99p promotion. Why was such a well-loved book supposedly just peaking in it's popularity (if reviews are to be believed) being put on promotion? Hmmm.
My second clue should have been the ominous warning tweet I received from Anna at A Case For Books when announcing my recent reading acquisition. Hmmm again.
The next clues should have been the relentless (and I mean relentless) name dropping littering the first chapters of this book. It was almost as if it was trying to distract from something, hmmm...?
And then, the true horrible nature of The Edge Of Never revealed itself.
At around half way, I entered the gateway of 50 Shades of Grey, Remastered. I was also slapped with the most horrific use of "rape" as verb that I have ever encountered. Not to mention the abundance of gender stereotyping that is being furtively, and rightly, fought-against in the name of feminism. Oh. My. God. And not in a good way... This book just became utterly offensive at the midway point.
So let's get to it, shall we?
I genuinely thought The Edge of Never started out fine. Camryn falls out with her best friend and, still struggling with the previous death of her ex, boards a bus to nowhere just to escape. On the bus, she meets Andrew - a charming, tattooed guy with a taste for classic rock who is traveling to see his dying father for the last time. They flirt, they while away the hours together, and they realise they have a connection. So far, so chick-lit. I wasn't exactly enthralled but it was ok for the genre, and at least it wasn't dreaded insta-love. The characters seemed to have a bit of substance with their back stories.
The name-dropping was ridiculous. I said it was relentless, but it was over the top to the point of hilarity. These guys dont listen to music or wear clothes. They wear Brandon Boyd on their "large chest", they sing to The Civil Wars - more specifically Barton Hollow and Poison and Wine - and they look like Kellan Lutz. Lordy help you if you have no idea who/what these things are because the author actually uses the songs, without giving you the lyrics, to convey meaning.
Things start to get really bad as soon as the bus journey comes to an end, and the book slowly disintegrates into foulness from there. Camryn wants to continue her life avoidance, and so Andrew agrees that after he's seen his father they'll head out on a road trip together - with a catch: Camryn has to do whatever he says. *twitch*
Camryn agrees and embarks upon the road getting all these "experiences". One being changing a tyre. Coz, y'know, that's the optimum level of impossible for a poor widdle pwetty girl *TWITCH* the entire time, Andrew is checking out her ass *TWITCH*
Of course, conversation in the car and endless motel rooms eventually turns to sex. They want each other by now, but their "shadowed pasts" are in the way, so they just talk about it. Andrew tells Camryn if he has sex with her he must "own her" *TWITCH* and Camryn (wait for it...) likes it really rough. She seriously says "forced" - but it's ok coz like, totally not "real rape" - *TWIIITCH* for f***'s sake what the hell is going on right now with this book?!!!!
To add MAJOR insult to already open-wound-type injury, the author proceeds to use the word "rape" as a valid descriptive device in relation to - of all things - goosebumps. Well thank you for taking a harrowing, awful, shattering thing that SHOUDLN'T EVEN EXIST, and using it akin to a passing comment. "Ohh I've come over all cold" would. have. sufficed.
Yes, I should have stopped reading right there and then, but I was near the end...
I continued and was met with the poor pwetty helpless girl getting hit on by some guys in a bar and having to be Saved By Barfight By Possessive Boyfriend coz she's "too sexy" in a boob tube. *ARGH!*
Next up, poor pwetty helpless girl cant handle her drinks so Big Strong Man must carry her home and help her puke.
Oh, no... I need to stop. You get the point. Just do me a favour: listen to the advice, unlike I did, and DO NOT read this book. 0/10.
The Edge Of Never - review
Emma is a designer living in Bristol, UK. A self-confessed stationery addict, book lover and TV sci-fi geek, she enjoys sketching zombie-eyed women and finding her next source of inspiration in the pages on the bookshelf.