When their too-adult lives lead them down self-destructive paths, these broken teens find a way to heal in this YA novel perfect for fans of Ellen Hopkins.
With her impossible-to-please grandmother on her back about college and her disapproving step-dad watching her every move, Tessa would do anything to escape the pressure-cooker she calls home. So she finds a shot of much-needed power and confidence by hooking up with boys, even though it means cheating on her boyfriend. But when she's finally caught red-handed, she’ll do anything she can to cover up what she's done.
Jack is a prankster who bucks the system every chance he gets—each transgression getting riskier and riskier. He loves the thrill, and each adventure allows a little release because his smug smile and suave demeanor in the face of authority doesn’t make life at home with his mom any less tough. He tries to take care of her, but the truth is he's powerless in the face of her fragile mental health. So he copes in his own way, by defacing public property and pulling elaborate pranks, though he knows in the end this’ll only screw up his life even more.
As they both try not to let their self-destructive patterns get the best of them, Tessa and Jack gravitate toward one another, discovering the best parts of themselves in the process. An honest portrayal of the urges that drive us and finding the strength to overcome them.
This was one of those stormy reads with a rainbow'ish ending.... Most of it was dark and gloomy with shocking reveals and painfully flawed characters, but there were tiny slivers of color that brought hope. The plot was pure grit, but the the execution was a flawless piece of art.
I know this is something I probably shouldn't admit to, but Tessa was like a soul sister. Her pain hit home and I felt so connected to her chapters. The things she did were ugly, but the reasons behind them were real and raw. Often times pain dwindles self worth to the point of no return. It's hard to think positive when you are drowning in negativity. These are the circumstances that she faced daily. You may not like her as a character, but please give her a chance to grow. Her life is anything but easy and the bravery in ink is one every girl should read about.
I think my only issue was Jack. While I loved his sweet, caring side... His rebel attitude and obnoxious jokes to get out of trouble didn't exactly click with me. I understand why he was the way he was and it was tender and emotional how much he cared for his mom, but cocky and me just don't work. It's not exactly a book flaw, more of a reader flaw. I know Jack had his reasons, but I would have liked to see him crack a little more with the authority to show the vulnerability that I craved.
All in all, this book is top notch in the ya genre. It brought everything to the table and really pulled out the deep issues I love to read about. I highly recommend it!