Allie lost everything the night her boyfriend, Trip, died in a horrible car accident—including her memory of the event. As their small town mourns his death, Allie is afraid to remember because doing so means delving into what she’s kept hidden for so long: the horrible reality of their abusive relationship.
When the police reopen the investigation, it casts suspicion on Allie and her best friend, Blake, especially as their budding romance raises eyebrows around town. Allie knows she must tell the truth. Can she reach deep enough to remember that night so she can finally break free? Debut writer Jennifer Shaw Wolf takes readers on an emotional ride through the murky waters of love, shame, and, ultimately, forgiveness.
What if you could not remember the night your boyfriend died? Allie’s abusive boyfriend Trip died the night of her birthday, the night of the cotillion. He had been promising her an exciting birthday surprise and was taking her to their “special” place in the woods. Allie does not remember what happened next, why the car fell off the cliff into the ocean. Although Trip is dead, Allie cannot forget him. The scars he left on her body and mind are deep and seem impossible to remove or heal. Life in town is miserable for Allie; Trip had isolated her to such an extent that she has no friends at school. Allie feels alone despite her twin brother, Andrew, and former friend, Blake’s, attempts to bring her back to life. Blake is isolated as well, born to a drug addicted mother, he has never fit in. A new detective is in town as well, and he believes Trip may have been murdered. Allie is the only person who knows what happened that night.
Allie used to be a bright, excited and fearless. Trip has beaten her down, but he has not broken her even if she feels like he did. Allie is still brave in one respect; she is extremely protective of the people she cares about. This is an excellent book. A reader will root for Allie and wonder what did happen the night Trip died. Allie is a good heroine that the reader hopes will recover from the trauma she suffered. Breaking Beautiful should be read by older readers. At least age fourteen, the abuse Allie experienced might be too mature for younger readers. Girls and women would probably enjoy Jennifer Shaw Wolf’s work more than male readers. The story takes place from Allie’s point of view, her thoughts and ideas. Breaking Beautiful is a great book with an admirable heroine.
*Reviewed by Kristin*
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