When We Collided, a tale of a book with two faces

When We Collided by Emery Lord

Seventeen-year-old Jonah Daniels has lived in Verona Cove, California, his whole life and only one thing has changed: his father used to be alive, and now he’s not. Reeling from the tragedy, Jonah must take care of his family. Enter Vivi Alexander, new girl in town. Vivi is in love with life. A gorgeous, unfiltered hurricane of thoughts and feelings, she transforms Jonah’s family and changes his life. But there are always consequences when worlds collide…

4 stars

Finding myself in the mood for a cute contemporary read, I decided to pick up When We Collided from my shelf where it had been standing for years. It came in a bookish subscription box years ago, but nothing ever enticed me to pick it up. Until one summery evening where I didn’t have a lot of other contemporaries on my shelf…

I quickly realized that this was not going to be the cute contemporary read I was looking for and instead found myself reading a book revolving around grief and bipolar disease. Not a problem, mental health is one of my buzz words when I’m looking for a book. Right?

Wrong. I quickly got very, very annoyed while reading this book. Lord wanted to write both a cute romancy read (okay it WAS somewhere in there) and a harrowing account of a girl with bipolar disease, and it was not working for me. The girl was clearly spiraling and breaking at the seams, yet no one, not her boyfriend with whom she spent most of her time nor her mother, was seeing it. Add to that the fact that her disease makes her “like no other girl in the world” and you’ll see a book fly against the wall in my house. I couldn’t take it.

I can’t DNF a book to save my life, so of course there was no way that I was going to put When We Collided away in favor of a different story. I pushed through in order to finish it and be done with it. But then something happened. Vivi kept spiraling and I got really invested in her well-being (which maybe I already was from the very beginning).

I don’t appreciate how often people hide their scars and doubts. Really, it’s not fair to people who are struggling, to go on believing that everyone else just has it totally together and never has one bad thought in their lives. Like, I know you people sometimes lie awake at night torturing yourself over the atrocities in this world and morality and meaning. I know you’re not just dreaming about riding a pink pony to your job as a cupcake taster.

I finished the book with tears in my eyes and the feeling like I was pushed through a paper-shredder. Lord beautifully touches on depression through bipolar disease, clinical depression and depression through an event, and masterfully shows you the difference and the repercussions of all three.

The story slowly gnawed at me and got under my skin, and I’m so glad I can’t DNF a book or I would never have known how good it actually was. Now, I’m still not a fan of the the romancy read part of the book, I really don’t think it fitted, but I can’t help but love how bipolar disease was portrayed. I’m utterly conflicted, but I don’t mind at all. What a rollercoaster of feelings. (Wow, this review is not helping you at all, now is it?)

Talk to me

Have you read this book? If not, does it sound interesting to you? If yes, what did you think? Let me know in the comments!

Title: When We Collided
Author: Emery Lord
Series: N/A
Publication date: April 7th, 2016
Publisher: Bloomsbury Children’s

3 Comments Add yours

  1. I’ve overlooked this book in bookstores before, but I think I’m going to have to give it a chance! From your review, it sounds amazing! ( and mental illness is one of my buzzwords too! )


    1. Sasha The Bookdragon says:

      Wow, I sort of can’t believe I’ve convinced someone to read the book with that review :’). To be honest, I do recommend it and it is very realistic. Just also very difficult and maddening to read.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. This probably sounds weird, but I love reading books that are difficult or gritty, or frustrating. It means that I actually care and am engaged in the story, you know? It’s hard to get swept up in a light, fluffy story – because they might be adorable, but there isn’t much past the surface.

        Again, great post! 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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