- Paperback: 352 pages
- Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books; Reprint edition (July 29, 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0062217143
- ISBN-13: 978-0062217141
- Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.8 x 8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 538 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,356 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Beginning of Everything Paperback – July 29, 2014
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Praise for THE BEGINNING OF EVERYTHING: “Smart writing and a compelling narrator raise this book above ordinary depictions of high school drama. Efficient use of language, evocative descriptions and subtle turns of phrase make reading and rereading this novel a delight.” (Kirkus Reviews (starred review))
“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.” (Booklist (starred review))
“Schneider shows remarkable skill at getting inside her narrator’s head as his life swings between disaster and recovery.” (Publishers Weekly (starred review))
“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.” (School Library Journal)
“The Beginning of Everything is a tragic romance of the best kind that leaves the reader feeling as though they are part of the story, and wishing there was more.” (Voice of Youth Advocates (VOYA))
“Dazzling. Full of razor-sharp wit, a keen sense of observation, and surprisingly tender compassion.” (Jeannette Walls, New York Times bestselling author of The Glass Castle: A Memoir and The Silver Star)
“Heartbreaking and hilarious. I have no doubt that girls everywhere are going to fall madly, deeply, hopelessly in love with Ezra Faulkner.” (Sarah Mlynowski, author of A Little Bit Broken)
“Smart, funny, heartbreaking, and so true it hurts…this is a book you will never forget.” (Lauren Barnoldt, author of Two-Way Street and Sometimes It Happens)
“Robyn Schneider can write.” (New York Times Book Review)
“It’s an endearing book filled with similarly touching little moments and plenty of snappy dialogue.” (New York Times Book Review)
From the Back Cover
Ezra Faulkner was supposed to be homecoming king, but that was before—before his girlfriend cheated on him, before a car accident shattered his leg, and before he fell in love with new girl Cassidy Thorpe.
Top customer reviews
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I wanted to LOVE this book. I really did. It had so so much going for it. The story line, if taken down to the basics was truly brilliant. "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." ~School Library Journal. Enter Ezra's tragedy, the popular jock was getting along just fine in life, and then a series of typical high school events leads him to a car wreck that has shattered his knee and taken away his tennis career and the idea of his former life.
Ezra begins a journey of self doubt and introspection that really screams brilliance. But as the book dragged on with a LOT of introspection, the plot line dragged along and it seemed to lose the magic that was to be part of the romance, as well. While Ezra is trying to find his new identity he meets new girl Cassidy Thorpe and kindles a relationship with the strange and smart new girl, who has her own secret tragedy. The author set it up nicely to begin, But it was a little too instant for me, one minute they're starting their relationship, the next... "She tasted like buried treasure and swing sets and coffee. She tasted the way fireworks felt, like something you could get close to, but never really have just for yourself." As we traveled farther into the book and slow to develop plot, it seemed to fizzle out to a lot of extra information that seemed to just fill the story instead of enhance it. The character development was strong in many aspects (lots of stereotypes but I don't mind that) but, there were so many characters that I would have liked to see be developed more that could have taken place of the strange fillers throughout the book, **clears throat, TOBY!.... There were some damn beautiful quotes throughout the book that I highlighted as well, so the author has some amazing talent, I just wish it all meshed together better.
While I wasn't really a fan of the ending myself, I can see the reasoning for the turn that it took and can even respect it. It just felt so sudden. The plot twist drops, there is bargaining and self realization and then its just.... done.
It was a good enough read for me to finish but I had really hoped for just a little bit more for both characters and a stronger, not so sudden end.
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
Personally, I think that art is meant to make you "feel" emotions, and this text definitely made me feel a range of emotions in regards to some of the behavior exhibited by the characters. Erza Faulkner most certainly experienced tragedy, though I do not think that this tragedy is anyway attached to the car accident or high school drama.
The author hits on some significant issues in modern day society such as: mental illness, social pressures or anxieties (pressure of maintaining the "status quo" and the damage it causes developing minds/perhaps even traumatizing).
I wish there would have been more resolution for the main character(s)...perhaps more of a healing aspect for a particular character, but alas as stated in The Great Gatsby, "All the bright precious things fade so fast, and they don't come back."
Overall, it was a pretty good read.