Broken pieces of a ceramic plate are scattered on a smooth concrete floor.

Photo by chuttersnap on Unsplash

If you are opposed to strong verbal language, sex scenes and/or might be triggered by depictions of sexual assault and bullying, this book is not for you. And I’m not going to waste your time today.

But if you’re still with me, we’re about to dive into a New Adult (NA) novel that does some pretty extraordinary things. Ready? Grab your hat because we’re going to cover a lot of ground pretty fast.

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Published in January of 2017, Let Me Fall, by Lily Foster is a heartbreaking yet satisfying coming-of-age read. The narrative follows two characters, Carolyn and Jeremy, as they navigate their messy world from middle school through their early twenties. But this book doesn’t get bogged down in flashbacks, info dumps, or any of the other literary sins that can make novels unappealing. In fact, it flows along at a nice pace without any lulls. And the angst and pain the characters experience is palpable.

But what I love about this book more than anything else is how seamlessly it addresses a variety of difficult issues without ever glorifying or romanticizing them:

  • Differences in socioeconomic class
  • Sexual abuse
  • Child abuse
  • Mental illness
  • Harassment
  • Bullying
  • Dyslexia
  • Consent
  • Alcoholism
  • Suicide

Each of these issues is subtly woven into the fabric of the story without ever seeming forced or preachy. Instead, Foster paints scenarios in a realistic light that all too many of us understand, firsthand.

As an older Millennial who grew up before smartphones and taught younger Millenials as well as part of Generation Z, I was especially affected by the online bullying scenes. It is something I never had to experience at that emotionally and mentally vulnerable stage of life yet is a very real threat to today’s youth. And this novel does an excellent job describing both the subtlety and the absolute horror that can be unleashed.

Graffiti heart on a wooden park bench.

Photo by Jamez Picard on Unsplash

However, at its heart, this book is a love story. Will Jeremey and Carolyn overcome their hurdles and finally get together? I’m not giving away any spoilers. But whether or not they actually become a couple in the book, I totally ship it. And you will, too.

PS: Don’t forget to buy this book!

Buy it here and I’ll get some money to pay bills and keep this site running.

Buy it here and I get nothing. (I won’t judge. You do you.)

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