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Sandy

My Never Ending List

I read almost every genre & I enjoy venturing into unfamiliar territory. As a library volunteer, I'm constantly bringing home novels. Being a substitute teacher, I read lots of YA & children's books.  

Everything Beautiful is Not Ruined

Everything Beautiful Is Not Ruined - Danielle Younge-Ullman
This book was a beauty. I thought I was getting a novel about a teen on a camping survival excursion but I got way more than that. This novel was more than survival, it was about living and loving.
 
Ingrid grew up under the lights of the opera house, her mom was a star and she enjoyed being the center of attention. The glamorous life suited Margot-Sophia until her voice stopped working for her. Now, Margot-Sophia was on a downhill spiral and she was taking Ingrid with her.
 
Ingrid was now forced to avoid music, forced to avoid anything that had to do with music for in doing so, this was one area where tranquility was felt in the household. This evading was hard on Ingrid as she loved music yet, keeping her mother calm had been worth it for many years.
 
There aren’t many years of school left for Ingrid so she secretly decides to try out for the school play. When she surprisingly gets a part, I cringed to think what her mother would do. They’re both strong-willed individuals at this point in the novel but someone has to compromise here. They both held on tight as Ingrid breaks the news. Adjusting to this new routine, they each tried to hold their own ground while tensions ran high. Wow, this section of the novel was intense and the pages were flying.
 
Currently, we find Ingrid frustrated again with her mother. Mother signed Ingrid up for a 3-week summer camp which was okay with Ingrid. This camp is another one of mother’s devises and as Ingrid discovers, this camp is not the same camp on the brochure Ingrid had. This is a 3-week survival camp that will push Ingrid abilities, strengthening her physically and mentally until the very end. Ingrid will spend 3-weeks with teens who are struggling with a variety of issues and at first, Ingrid feels like an outsider as she feels she has nothing in common with them. As the days pass, Ingrid begins to see things differently.
 
After a couple chapters, I realized I couldn’t put this novel down. I liked how the novel flashed back and forth from Ingrid childhood to present day. I enjoyed reading about the challenges the group had the 3-weeks at camp. The assault in the novel threw a whole new set of emotions and thoughts through me. I really enjoyed the ending, I thought it was fantastic.
 
This is a novel that you’ll be glad that you picked up as I’m sure glad that I did. It’s one that I’ll definitely be rereading in the future.