WHEN REASON BREAKS by Cindy L. Rodriguez – Review #WeNeedDiverseBooks
Mar 1st, 2015 by Liza Wiemer

 WHEN REASON BREAKS by Cindy L. Rodriguez – Review

Hardcover, 304 pages

Published February 10, 2015

Published by: Bloomsbury USA Childrens

Buy it here: IndieBound | Amazon | Audible | B&N | Book Depository

Connect with the author: Goodreads | Twitter

From Goodreads:22032788

13 Reasons Why meets the poetry of Emily Dickinson in this gripping debut novel perfect for fans of Sara Zarr or Jennifer Brown.

A Goth girl with an attitude problem, Elizabeth Davis must learn to control her anger before it destroys her. Emily Delgado appears to be a smart, sweet girl, with a normal life, but as depression clutches at her, she struggles to feel normal. Both girls are in Ms. Diaz’s English class, where they connect to the words of Emily Dickinson. Both are hovering on the edge of an emotional precipice. One of them will attempt suicide. And with Dickinson’s poetry as their guide, both girls must conquer their personal demons to ever be happy.

In an emotionally taut novel with a richly diverse cast of characters, readers will relish in the poetry of Emily Dickinson and be completely swept up in the turmoil of two girls grappling with demons beyond their control.

My Review:

When Reason BreaksWhen Reason Breaks by Cindy L. Rodriguez Highly recommend. (Plus an amazing cover that fits well with the novel.)

WHEN RESAON BREAKS is a deeply moving story that addresses the issues of depression and suicide. Teacher Ms. Diaz introduces her students to Emily Dickinson, and her poetry has a tremendous influence on the characters in this novel. Emotionally charged issues of true friendship, dating, sex, and betrayal combined with overpowering parents for one character and a parent grieving from her divorce for another, impact this story.

Beautifully written, people will feel Elizabeth’s anger and Emily’s struggle with her identity and the emotions that come with it, the confusion that comes with sadness and loss, developing relationships and those relationships that break. I love the complexity Cindy Rodriguez brings to all her characters.

I definitely recommend this novel for anyone who likes a serious contemporary YA. I’m certain the characters will remain with readers long after they finish. Bravo, Ms. Rodriguez for shining a new light on tough issues. In addition, the Dickinson references and Ms. Rodriguez’s explanation of those references will introduce Dickinson to young adults—some for the first time. They’ll learn more about her life and poetry, which I am certain will get some to explore Dickinson’s work further!

Thank you to Bloomsbury for providing the ARC.

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