Review: Broken and Screwed by Tijan
Since Broken and Screwed 2 is being released today I did a re-read of the first installment. I needed to remember the details of how BS1 ended before I read BS2, and since I hadn't published a review of this one I thought I'd hit two birds with one stone.
Alexandra's older brother died the night he graduated. That day changed everything for her. No longer was she the party girl. No longer did she care about being popular and no longer was her family the happy unit she always thought existed. The only person who could help her heal is the same person who loved her brother as much as she did, his best friend. She only hopes to keep her entire heart from breaking when Jesse will move on, and she knows he will.
After Ethan died, Jesse excelled at basketball, partying, and girls. He used it all to turn his emotions off, but the irony was that Alex was the only person who could do that for him. She helped him forget, but she was the one person he shouldn't be with because the secrets he knows could shatter everything. They could shatter her.
What I thought:
This is a truly haunting and painful book. It's about how you keep on living after the one you loved the most die, how that very fragile life can revert back to a mere existence.
When Ethan dies Alex left alone. Her mother checks out from reality and her father is always at work and she is left abandoned and forgotten. She is a shell of the carefree party girl she used to be. She shuts out her friends and instead seeks solace in Jesse's arms.
Jesse's a major player and is in no way boyfriend material and will break her heart. She know that, she just hopes she will survive it. I love how Tijan picture their struggle of staying apart yet wanting to be together. While the book is solely written from Alex POV, you get a pretty good idea of what's going on in Jesse's head. I have no idea how Tijan does that, but I love that she do. I think I'm in love with everything Tijan does.
There isn't a whole lot hapening in this book, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. We get to follow Alex though her complicated life while she tries to cope and to heal, you don't need a whole lot of other dramatic happenings, like say, physical abuse, break-ins and whatnot. Though her friends, Angie and Melissa, are good a supply of constant teenage drama and vocal fights. They both have major issues and insecurities that we only begin to scratch the surface of and it leaves a lot of excitement for the second book. Or maybe Tijan has decided to focus on Sam and doesn't dwell in to the depths of her secondary characters. Whatever it is, it doesn't really bother me. Alex's struggles is enough to make this an awesome book.
I am in awe of Tijan's writing. This isn't an action packed and adrenaline filled novel but Tijan manages to hold you captive through page after page. It's impossible to put the book down! You always fall in love with her characters even, if they in some books comes off as hard and unattainable. This is no exception.
Alex is damaged and while I wouldn't necessarily make the same choices as she does, I completely understand why she did. Jesse, too, has a lot to figure out before he can say he's truly happy, but I get it. I've never gone through what they've been through, not even remotely, but I get it. That has to stand for something, doesn't it?
If you've never read a book by Tijan, I suggest this as your first. While she might touch similar subjects as other books, her books and, more importantly, her characters are unique and really one of a kind. They can be a little bit hard to get used to. She is a truly talented writer and I do recommend every books she's written but this might be her "softest" in my opinion, and it's still miles away from a sappy love story. Miles!