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You Against Me Hardcover – September 13, 2011
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This story is told from two perspectives: Mikey McKenzie, the older brother of the accuser, Karyn, and Ellie Parker the younger sister of the accused, Tom. The story opens up with Mikey trying to figure out how to make Tom pay for what he's done to his sister. Mikey feels he needs to do something because since the rape, Karyn refuses to set foot out of their flat or go to school. She barely changes clothes or eats. Tom has just been released on bail, and Mikey figures this would be an ideal opportunity to make a move. Tom has no idea what Mikey looks like so he heads over to the Parker's home to scout it out. When he knocks on the door, Ellie answers, she's the same age as Karyn and doesn't recognize Mikey, mistakes him for one of Tom's college friends and invites him to Tom's release party. Mikey does go to the party but he never gets a chance alone with Tom. He instead ends up talking to Ellie most of the night and from that he hatches a plan to cozy up to her and pump her for information. She was, after all in the house when the attack occurred, and he doesn't believe for one minute, the statement she gave the police: that she saw nothing. This plan sort of backfires when Tom starts to fall for Ellie and Ellie starts to fall for him. Will their relationship survive when the truth comes out?
I loved Mikey and Ellie' story. There were some swoon-worthy scenes. It's ironic that out of all the people in the world they end up falling for each other. I think because of the shared experience, even though on opposite sides, they have a bond. They both can understand what the other is going through. All the way around, this would be a difficult situation. You don't even know who's telling the truth until about two thirds through the book, but even then there is damage to both families no matter what. Rape, as a crime is such a difficult one to prosecute and without definitive proof there would always be a shadow of doubt cast on both sides. Even with this tough subject, I highly recommend this story. I thoroughly enjoyed it!
Two families. One well off. The other not so well off. A son accused of rape. Both families want to protect their children. In the course of these events...life for everyone is messy. Very messy.
This was a good story. I was not sure about it at first but I eventually got lost in all of the sadnesses and untruths and the realization of what Mikey and Ellie will do to save their families until they can't save them any more.
Mikey is the older brother of the victim. Ellie is the younger sister of the perpetrator. They meet. They begin a sort of odd relationship. Ellie does not know their connection but Mikey does. Ellie finds out who Mikey is.
Ellie has not been telling the truth about what happened the night that Mikey's sister was raped. It is slowly tearing her apart. Mikey's family was sort of falling apart any way...and his sister's rape is only making it worse. It does not help that Mikey and Ellie are attracted, very attracted to each other.
To add to the tenseness of this drama...there are issues at Ellie's school, issues with her father, and issues with the fact that she knows what happened that night and has to decide what to do about it.
I found this to be an intense well written family drama. I was surprised when I began reading it...I did not realize it was an English book...so you have to get used to biscuits and tea and crisps and jumpers.
Again...tense, intense, sad, hopeful... These words describe this amazing book.
It was a wonderfully told love story set against a backdrop of devastating realities.
Not only is the story compelling, the author is hugely talented. I am always impressed by an author who can provoke me to feel sympathy for a character who is, for all intents and purposes, a "bad guy" which is exactly what this author does in some of the scenes between Ellie and her brother, the alleged rapist. At least once, I was moved to tears which has been known to happen to me when watching movies but rarely happens when reading a book.
I realize not everyone may be comfortable with the content since this book discusses sex, drinking, smoking and drug use by teenagers. But having raised a teenaged girl who became an impressive adult, I learned that all of these things exist in their world even if we rather they didn't. Accepting that all these things might become her reality and talking openly about them is part of the reason I believe that my daughter never did any of those things. As such, I think the author wrote a realistic depiction of the teen world and handled these issues responsibly.
I also loved the author's style of writing. Stark. Clean. Lyrical, at times. She captures the essence of the teenaged voice. She made such an impression on me, I was compelled to write this, my first review that is longer than three lines.
Most recent customer reviews
Mikey's sister, Karyn, is claiming she was raped by Ellie's brother, Tom.Read more
I haven't read anything else by this author, but I was very interesting in seeing how this story would play out.Read more
Actual rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars
You Against Me is a story about rumors, doubt, lies, games and...Read more