Everything That Makes You by Moriah McStay

Everything That Makes YouEverything That Makes You by Moriah McStay

Publication Date: March 17, 2015 by Katherine Tegen Books

Genre: Young Adult Contemporary

[Special thanks to Katherine Tegen Books and Edelweiss for the review copy!]

Goodreads Summary:

One girl. Two stories. Meet Fiona Doyle. The thick ridges of scar tissue on her face are from an accident twelve years ago. Fiona has notebooks full of songs she’s written about her frustrations, her dreams, and about her massive crush on beautiful uber-jock Trent McKinnon. If she can’t even find the courage to look Trent straight in his beautiful blue eyes, she sure isn’t brave enough to play or sing any of her songs in public. But something’s changing in Fiona. She can’t be defined by her scars anymore.

And what if there hadn’t been an accident? Meet Fi Doyle. Fi is the top-rated female high school lacrosse player in the state, heading straight to Northwestern on a full ride. She’s got more important things to deal with than her best friend Trent McKinnon, who’s been different ever since the kiss. When her luck goes south, even lacrosse can’t define her anymore. When you’ve always been the best at something, one dumb move can screw everything up. Can Fi fight back?

Hasn’t everyone wondered what if? In this daring debut novel, Moriah McStay gives us the rare opportunity to see what might have happened if things were different. Maybe luck determines our paths. But maybe it’s who we are that determines our luck.

I was about to DNF this one, but I thought of giving it a chance. When I felt like DNF-ing this one, I said to myself, two more chapters. Those two chapters made me read more, so I ended up finishing the book, anyway.

But because of my little hiatus, I wasn’t able to post this review until now. I hope you understand. (And you can always join this post-hiatus giveaway!)

Okay, back to my review.

As I read, I slowly understood what was unclear during the first quarter. I found myself enjoying how the book was written, and eventually, I realized that, wow. I have never read a book like this one, a book that explored the other side of what if.

What ifs, like maybes (and other similar terms), have two sides: the yes and the no.

What if this happened? What is this didn’t happen? Maybe I’ll go. Maybe I won’t.

Everything That Makes You showed the two sides, and this idea of showing the two sides also has two sides: the up and the down.

The Upside
Plus plus plus for the unique factor. This book has the potential to stand out. It makes you think twice about the situation given while presenting how connected the characters really are. Amazing. Really amazing.

The Downside
Sometimes it gets confusing. Like, what side are we on again? But then, this flaw of the two sides idea is totally fixable.

It gets very hard to choose which side you would want to happen. But then, is there a need for a choice? I think the point of this story is to show that a perfect life is not guaranteed even if the bad stuff didn’t happen. That you can still live a beautiful life after the scars brought upon by the bad stuff. That things could still get ugly even if you seem to live in a perfect world. It’s nice to see what could have happened if this didn’t happen or this happened instead of this one, but hey, you have to face reality. You have to accept the fact that this really happened or that this actually happened instead of this one.

That’s why even if I sometimes let myself fantasize over the what ifs, I still open my eyes to what’s real. I am constantly trying to live in the present, and to let go of the what ifs in my life. Maybe those what ifs can come true in another life (multiple universes, anyone?) but then, maybe not. So even if what I have now is not as beautiful as I thought it would be, I still hold on to it. Because this life’s the only one I’ve got.

Everything That Makes You will open your eyes to the endless possibilities that life may bring while making you realize that you can’t have all those possibilities. You only have one reality, and it’s about time you embrace it.


Initial Rating: 3.875/5

Bonuses: 0.25

Demerits: 0.125


Final Rating: 4/5

What ifs change everything.

Signature II

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