Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ $3.99 shipping
+ $3.99 shipping
+ $3.99 shipping
The Beginning of Everything Hardcover – August 27, 2013
|New from||Used from|
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
From School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up-Ezra Faulkner believes that everyone has a tragedy waiting to happen that will be their life-changing moment. In the summer before seventh grade, his best friend, Toby, had his moment when he inadvertently caught the severed head of a boy who was decapitated on a ride in Disneyland. Ezra ended his friendship with Toby after that. Now 17, Ezra encounters his own tragic watershed event: he finds his girlfriend cheating on him and then has a car accident that ends his tennis career. He returns to school for his last year a broken boy who has shunned his jock friends and just wants to make it through life unnoticed. By reconnecting with Toby and developing a relationship with Cassidy, a new girl who has a secretive past and home life, Ezra gets the chance to remake himself into someone who lives rather than just exists. Though Ezra's old friends are depicted as stereotypes, they help to emphasize the attributes of his new friends, who are quirky, smart, and funny. This is a wonderfully told story. The dialogue moves the plot along at a fast pace, and Ezra, with all his flaws, is a character to whom readers can relate. Teens won't want to put this one down until the mystery of Cassidy is unraveled at the end.-Elizabeth Kahn, Patrick F. Taylor Science & Technology Academy, Jefferson, LAα(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
*Starred Review* The way Ezra Faulkner sees it, everyone gets one great tragedy, after which life should roll on predictably. His middle-school best friend, Toby, gets his when a roller-coaster accident brands him a social misfit, and Ezra gets his a week before junior prom, when he, the tennis star and class president shoo-in, is injured by a distracted driver. When senior year begins, Ezra and his destroyed leg slide easily into a new social circle, eschewing the surface attempts of former friends to stay connected and instead joining Toby on the debate team. That’s where he meets Cassidy, a beguiling transfer student who helps Ezra discover his new self. To Ezra, it’s an idyllic relationship, so when it collapses, his worldview collapses, too—hadn’t he just recovered from his one great tragedy? Throughout, Ezra reads The Great Gatsby and alludes to parallels found in the classic novel. His story of self-discovery and reinvention is told in past tense, providing just enough distance for bits of reflection and subtle foreshadowing, which serve to enrich characters and build suspense. This thought-provoking novel about smart kids doing interesting things will resonate with the John Green contingent, as it is tinged with sadness, high jinks, wry humor, and philosophical pondering in equal measures. Grades 8-11. --Heather Booth
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
During what I would call Ezra enlightenment, you see this guy build a life, discover new stuff and watch him fall in love. Even if it is with the wrong person. He will grow and he will discover, and you the reader will take something away from this book.
This book was definitely one of a kind. It is also a book that I hightly recommend anyone who loves a smart YA read. #MustRead
So says Ezra Faulkner, the president of his high school's junior class and captain of the varsity tennis team. For Ezra, that tragic encounter is when his BMW is blindsided by a hit-and-run driver, leaving his leg shattered, his wrist injured, and ending any hopes of ever playing sports again. After spending the summer recovering from his injuries, he returns for his senior year of high school and everything is different--his girlfriend has found someone new, his friends have moved on without him, and he's not sure what life is like outside of the "in crowd."
But after reconnecting with his childhood best friend, and being suckered into joining the debate team, he meets Cassidy Thorpe, an intelligent, beautiful, mischievous, and mysterious transfer student who was a legendary debate competitor at a rival high school before she disappeared, only to return as a student at Ezra's high school. She forces Ezra to embrace his intelligence and realize he needs to work for his dreams instead of expecting everything to be handed to him as it always has been. And as the pair's friendship turns to romance, Ezra realizes that Cassidy is the type of girl he has been looking for all along. Until the relationship suddenly sours for reasons he can't understand.
I absolutely loved everything about The Beginning of Everything. Robyn Schneider did such a terrific job creating and giving depth to her characters and creating a plot that draws you in instantaneously and hooks you completely. Schneider's dialogue is tremendously intelligent and witty without being overly precious--honestly, if she thinks this way in "real life," I totally could see myself being friends with her. It truly is, as Kirkus said in its review of the book, "Here are teens who could easily trade barbs and double entendres with the characters that fill John Green's novels."
This is a book about trying to figure out where you belong, even though you've truly known it all along. It's about being pushed beyond your comfort zone, being forced to believe you're more than you've always thought you were, and how important it is to find friends you truly identify with rather than feel obligated to be with to uphold expectations. And more than that, this is a story about not letting your life be defined by the adversities you're dealing with.
I've said quite often how impressed I've been over the last few years with the outstanding quality of YA fiction, particularly stories that aren't dystopian in nature and/or don't include vampires, werewolves, angels, or others with superpowers. (Not that there's anything wrong with those books.) While The Beginning of Everything may be classified as a YA novel, it's equally as good as--if not better--than some "adult" novels I've read recently. Besides, it's not every novel that makes me wish I could relive my high school days with the kind of awareness and self-confidence that the characters in this book do!
If you like non-dystopic YA literature, get this one...it's a winner!
Also interesting was the Ezra's point of view as a former golden boy turned psuedo outcast after a life changing event - very realistically he's not completely one or the other which helps make him a more believable character than you usually get in YA novels. The fact that he sees everyone around him both through the lens of the past and in his current state make all the characters more richly drawn. Feels more like John Hughes than it does John Green.
The Beginning of Everything reminded me a lot of how John Green writes. It's witty, smart, and at times, scathing. People who spend a lot of time with teenagers will realize that this is exactly how they act. I loved the characters, the bumbling insecurity, the sweet, figuring-it-out moments. The characters were awesome.
I mostly enjoyed the story line. I'll admit, the plot twist surprised me. I thought I had it all figured out and I was wrong. Yay for that. What I didn't like was how long we waited for the reveal, and how it left me twisting in the wind. There wasn't enough substance at the end of the book to leave me satisfied. The reveal was great...the end was...lonely. I get that not all books have a happy ending, and this one wasn't necessarily unhappy, I just wanted more substance, more explanation, and more digging into Cassidy's life. We spend 300+ pages with her, and at the end she's still a mystery, which left me frustrated.
Over all, this book is a great, surprising read. I'd pick up Schneider's other novels.
Most recent customer reviews
Ezra A junior who has it all, the varsity tennis team, jock friends, popularity and a hottie girlfriend - finds out just how quickly...Read more