Every Ugly Word by Aimee L. Salter Book Review

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Title: Every Ugly Word
Author: Aimee L. Salter 
Release Date: July 17th 2014 
Publisher: Mark My Words Publicity
Source: Sent for review
Rating: ★★★★


When seventeen-year-old Ashley Watson walks through the halls of her high school bullies taunt and shove her. She can’t go a day without fighting with her mother. And no matter how hard she tries, she can’t make her best friend, Matt, fall in love with her. But Ashley also has something no one else does: a literal glimpse into the future. When Ashley looks into the mirror, she can see her twenty-three-year-old self.

Her older self has been through it all already—she endured the bullying, survived the heartbreak, and heard every ugly word her classmates threw at her. But her older self is also keeping a dark secret: Something terrible is about to happen to Ashley. Something that will change her life forever. Something even her older self is powerless to stop.

My Review: 
I was interested to read Every Ugly Word since on the surface, it's an average contemporary about a teenager dealing with her tormentors but it has a supernatural? Science fiction? twist

The concept is super intriguing and I wondered how the author was going to handle the story and if the future self in the mirror was a metaphor or a coping mechanism for Ashley.

Ashley was a fantastic character and I liked her right off the bat and sympathized with her struggles. I didn't feel pity for her, which is important because everyone around her saw her as pathetic and less than and I liked how the author put the reader in Ashley's shoes instead of making the reader see her like the rest of the characters saw her. 

Ashley's bullies were terrible as expected, but instead of hating them outright, I felt sorry for them. We didn't learn too much about Finn, Dex and Karyn's backstories, but it says a lot about them that they would consistently bother Ashley all the time.  

Ashley mentioned that she changed her phone number twice and they still kept harassing her with text messages on top of bothering her at school. That's a lot of commitment to bother with someone you think is such a loser. Don't they have to study, or go out, or watch the latest episode of Sailor Moon Crystal or something? Do they have lives at all? They need to do better. 

I didn't like Matt at all and while I understood why Ashley cared about him and vice-versa, I think Ashley should have left him in the dust along with her other classmates. Matt didn't deserve her at all after being such a coward. 

The different scenes between the present therapy room in the hospital switching over to the past was an amazing technique and the author weaves between them effortlessly.  The twist and everything leading up to it was fantastically done, keeping the tension and the pace and while I had my guesses, I didn't guess what was coming.

My only complain (and this might be semi-spoilerish) is that the alternate timelines and resulting time paradoxes were a little confusing at first and the origin of the mirror wasn't explained, but I could suspend my disbelief enough to enjoy the story to the end. 

I thought Every Ugly Word was fantastic and I completely recommend it! 

-Amanda Leon

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