Everyone We’ve Been by Sarah Everett
Publication Date: October 4, 2016 by Knopf Books for Young Readers
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary
[Special thanks to the publisher for the review copy!]
Addison Sullivan has been in an accident. In its aftermath, she has memory lapses and starts talking to a boy that no one else can see. It gets so bad that she’s worried she’s going crazy.
Addie takes drastic measures to fill in the blanks and visits a shadowy medical facility that promises to “help with your memory.” But at the clinic, Addie unwittingly discovers it is not her first visit. And when she presses, she finds out that she had certain memories erased. She had a boy erased.
But why? Who was that boy, and what happened that was too devastating to live with? And even if she gets the answers she’s looking for, will she ever be able to feel like a whole person again?
This book held my heart with a hand of thorns.
You can’t erase someone from your heart.
The tagline killed me already. I felt a connection with Addie by just reading what was on the back cover. Because like her, I had to go through something very painful. It hurt so much I wanted to forget about it, but I couldn’t. I bet if Overton was real and if was within reach, I’d go there myself.
Addie and I were on our lowest.
The book held a secret: what made Addie want to forget? What happened to her that she couldn’t handle?
And when it was revealed, I felt disappointed at first.
Yun lang? (That was it?) was my initial reaction. But after finishing the book, I gave myself an internal slap because how dare I-
How dare I invalidate someone’s struggle because I went through worse?
I always rant about it – how some people tell me to get over my problems because my problems are “nothing” compared to what other people are going through.
When I came across a (slightly) different version of this quote on Twitter, I badly wanted to hit the retweet button a million times. It was a great “THIS” quote.
I think the way you learn to deal with one hard thing affects the way you deal with the next and the one after that.
Forgive me for quoting an ARC, but that quote IS the book. And that quote IS my 2016.
Like what happened to me, there were people who tried to help Addie cope up with loss, but they can only do so much. The choice to stand up again is Addie’s. It was her choice to let go, like what I did.
The book had If I Stay feels. There was an accident involved, music meant so much to both Mia and Addie, and the two girls needed to decide. Mia, to live or to die. Addie, to forget or to remember.
I was in Addie’s shoes while reading, and when I found out that it’s not just about Zach, I was hurting for Addie. This book is not just about teenage love and the heartbreak that comes with it. This is also about who holds your hand when you feel like you can’t do it anymore. This book is about who didn’t give up on you when you gave up on yourself.
I started the year with this book review because Everyone We’ve Been is a book about letting go. We won’t see what’s the year has in store for us if we keep on looking back to what we can’t change.
Everyone We’ve Been is about moving forward, and move forward I will.
Final Rating: 5/5