You either have the feeling or you don’t

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Why We Broke Up
by Daniel Handler
Series: N/A
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Published: December 27th 2011
Genre: Young adult, contemporary, romance
Date read: June 1st 2014
My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

“I’m telling you why we broke up, Ed. I’m writing this letter, the whole truth of why it happened. And the truth is that I goddamn loved you so much.”

Last week I finished Why We Broke Up by Daniel Handler. Min Green is on her way to her now-ex-boyfriend Ed Slaterton. With her is a box full of items, collected during their relationship, and a letter she in where she writes exactly why they broke up, using the items as a starting point for every event that has made an impact in their relationship.
[SPOILER ALERT!]

The characters:
Minerva “Min” Green: I liked Min. I really did. But I didn’t like how she always reacted so negatively when she was described as artsy. And most of the time, she was the one who was expecting them to call her that, when usually, they would only say different. She need to get her shizz together. Other than that, she is just a normal teenager. And she is relatable. The way she unintentionally ditches her friends to be with Ed, and actually sits through his obviously boring practises, just to make him happy/just because he’s her boyfirend. I don’t agree with that, but well. Can’t deny that it’s the truth of how people actually are.
Ed Slaterton: This guy. Oh my Zeus, this guy is one hell of a kind. Maybe not. But goddang it. At first I liked him. His confident and concideration and kindness AND EVERYTHING. He had this positive aura and demeanor that I just loved. He did all these things that made it seem like he really cared about Min, even loved her. He introduced her to his sister, and they all get along. They had a bond. And then suddenly we get to know that he’s been casually hooking up with his ex? Really, Slaterton? I’m so disappointed in you. The worst part is that he didn’t even say sorry! Like hello, what the heck man? Of all the books I’ve read, I don’t think I’ve gone from loving to hating a character as much as with Ed Slaterton. Holy Zeus. Oh and his “gay” thing… I hope for his sake that he stopped with it even after their breakup.
Al Leopardi: Ahhh… The best guy friend. Like seriously, this dude is such a cutiepie, and a good friend. The fact that he always is there for Min makes my heart melt. Always been envious of those kinds of friendships. Anyways. Min has Lauren and Jordan aswell, but the friendship between Al and her is just something different. Stronger, somehow. I got a bit frustrated with his “no opinion”-thing, but well.. I guess it’s just his failed way to stay objective. Even though it was obvious that he had an opinion. At one point, I thought that he maybe, just maybe, would be gay. However it ended up with him being in love with Min all along. I don’t know what to make of that. Their story never developed.
Joan Slaterton: I actually wish that Min and Joan stay in touch because I feel like they have such a nice bonding, like they could have been sisters. If it weren’t for Ed, I bet they would’ve become real close. The thing with our Joanie, is that it seems like she knows about Ed and his ex. It makes me question exactly why she doesn’t tell Min, since it seems like she cares for Min enough to do so. Maybe it’s because of Ed. I don’t know. But well, at first I thought Joan secretly didn’t like Min or something, especially when she indirectly tells Min to go hom because they have a “family thing” or something. Judging from the way Ed later on rages about it, I guess it wasn’t just a “family thing” then. Thinking about it know, she must’ve told Ed that the thing he’s doing to Min is wrong and that he should stop. I don’t know, but that’s my theory at least. In conclusion, I still like Joan a lot. I wouldn’t mind her as my big sister.

The plot:
Honestly, it started off too slow. Well they went on and kissed at the first date, but that’s not what I’m aiming at. The story was dragging on a bit in the beginning, which made it actually a bit hard to keep reading. Since I read this during my exam period, the time lapse between each reading session just grew and grew. I tried to read at least once a day, but even that got hard. So well. I felt like it took me a gazillion year to get thorugh the book, and I was very convinced at I wouldn’t actually recommend it further. But then the plot twist came, by the very end. The way Min finds out about Annette is heartbreaking. Not only because she got cheated on by her school-basketball-captain, but also because she found out that Lottie Carson, the star who worked as some kind of red thread thourghout this book, actually died several years ago. Ed knew this, but never said a thing. Argh, he makes me so mad.
One thing I was frustrated about quite a lot was the fact that there was so many ties untouched. First of all, Jordan. What happened to her? The story began with Min having three friends; Al, Lauren and Jordan. By the end of the book, Jordan wasn’t mentioned at all. Second of all, what happened with Annette? During the last pages, Min wrote “(Sorry to hear about Annette, by the way.)” Excuse me what? I still don’t understand what happened to her.

All in all: 
Recommendation: Because of the ending, I’ll recommend this book. But be warned: the beginning is a bit boring.
My rating: 4 out of 5 stars

UP NEXT: Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

– Ellen

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