Title: Escaping Me
Author: Elizabeth Lee
Release Date: July 30, 2013
THOUGHTS:All she wanted to do was forget. Forget the memory of walking in on her boyfriend in the middle of, well, another girl. Forget how she had her entire life planned out. And, forget about being perfect all the time. Unfortunately, she was Whitney Vandaveer and despite the fact that she moved to the middle of nowhere – she couldn't.
He always knew he would never be more than nothing. No job, no money, no future. Cole Pritchett had accepted the fact that he would always be the screw up and he was okay with it. Until he met her.
Here's the thing they quickly found out – sometimes we all need a little help escaping who we think we are.
If you were to ask me point blank what I liked the most about Escaping Me, my answer would be very simple and straightforward - it's realistic, and not far-fetched at the very least. I can actually see some parts of it happening either to me or someone I'm close to, and this is not something I can say about most New Adult Contemporary novels about nowadays. Wait wait, you may say, novels aren't supposed to be realistic - they're supposed to distract you from your real, boring everyday life! Well, you do have a point, but for this particular genre, I prefer realistic situations and relatable characters because I firmly believe that that's what New Adult is all about. Through this genre, new adults in the legal sense should get an idea of what they can come to expect in this new chapter of their lives, and Escaping me did just that for me. This book is what New Adult is all about.
I found it amazing how ridiculously relatable both main characters are. Whitney, after finding out that her long-term boyfriend has been cheating on her, fled to her mother and sister's home in the country to try to forget and to ultimately escape, even just for a little while. A child of divorced parents, this was be the first time Whitney would spend a long stretch of time with both her mother and sister after choosing to live with her father after the divorce. Not only does Whitney have to come to terms with the fact that this boy she thought she was going to marry had no problem screwing other people behind her back, she also has to find out where she stands in this family she never had the chance to know.
Honestly, I found everything about Whitney's situation plausible. Her actions even feel a wee bit familiar, because I can picture myself going through the same motions! More and more children these days are products of divorce, and I'm sure that Whitney's filial situation will surely strike a chord is some reader's hearts. Moreover, I've always reckoned that it's basic instinct to run when you discover that people you love have wronged you so callously, and I can't blame Whitney for choosing to behave that way - I would have done so too! As a matter of fact, I'm sure that a lot of people share the exact same sentiment. I love how Lee explored Whitney's character - here's a privileged girl who has had everything she could ever need, and yet she has no idea what she wants. All her life her actions have been dictated by those around her, and it's only now that she's actually living and doing things just for the heck of it. Lee made Whitney so relatable, and as I have mentioned, familiar. I'm sure every girl has experienced feeling lost at some point in their lives.
The true can be said about Cole. I was a bit apprehensive about his character at first simply because he had those telltale bad boy looks (and we all know how some New Adult novels these days are all about bad boys who sadly don't have enough depth) but he quickly proved me wrong - this is one character that definitely has depth. I found myself relating to him quickly enough too! Everyone - from his brother to Whitney's father - expects so little of him that he just can't get this idea out of his head that he will never be good enough for Whitney. I'm sure everyone has experienced those feelings of unworthiness like Cole has.
I liked how Lee explored Whitney and Cole's relationship. It's not all about sex - you get to read about them having serious conversations about their past and their future, and that's something that I particularly enjoyed. There were no secrets between these two characters - nothing about their relationship was built on anything resembling a lie. They were honest with each other from the get go. Sure, they had their moments of acting prematurely, or judging each other quickly, but then again, what couple doesn't do that?
Lee really impressed me with this novel. Parts of the novel could have been stronger, and there were scenes that didn't transition well, but overall, I thoroughly enjoyed reading this novel. Lee did a great job in exploring her characters, and I don't think I can say this enough but I loved how everything was so realistic!
Rating: 4 Stars
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