I Wish You All the Best by Mason Deaver – A book review

I Wish You All the Best by Mason Deaver – A book review

It has been a while that I read a book that has opened my eyes on a few issues. And this book did that exactly, without cutting the entertainment factor. Let us get on to the book review of I Wish You All the Best by Mason Deaver, shall we?

About the book

I Wish You All the Best Book cover

Book Name: I Wish You All the Best

Author: Mason Deaver

Genre: Fiction – Romance, Young adult

Characters: Ben De Backer, Nathan Allen, Hannah and Thomas, Mariam

Setting: Raleigh, North Carolina , The USA

Plot Summary

When Ben De Backer comes out to their parents as a nonbinary, it doesn’t go well with them. They are thrown out of their house and is forced to reach out to their estranged sister Hannah and her husband, Thomas.

Thomas and Hannah let Ben to stay with them and help them join a new school. Ben comes out only to them and their therapist and wants to keep a very low profile at their new school.

But when Nathan Allan, a charismatic student, decides to befriend them and to include them in their gang, Ben’s plan fails spectacularly.

What does Ben actually want? Is it okay if they were actually attracted to Nathan? Read I Wish You All the Best by Mason Deaver to know more!

Book review

I Wish You All the Best by Mason Deaver is probably the first book I have read with a nonbinary/enby lead and honestly, I have learned a lot from it. Yet educating the readers about nonbinaries is not the main motive the book.

The book is filled with sadness and poignancy due to the plot. And at the same time, I Wish You All the Best makes sure there is hope and a chance for happiness.

I love the fact that the romance was not an end or to cure all the mental health issues. While I am all fluffy rom-com books, I somehow love the fact that I Wish You All the Best was not one of them, mainly because the topic is very important. And kudos to the #ownVoice author to have handled it so well.

If I had to complain about just one thing: I wish we had heard a little more about their relationship with Nathan, after the big reveal. You know, sorta acceptance or them dealing the issues together as a couple etc. Of course, that I Wish You All the Best didn’t do that doesn’t reduce it for me in any way.

What worked for me

  • I loved how I Wish You All the Best deals with anxiety and mental health as a part of identity crisis and then its acceptance.
  • Romance takes a backseat to themes like identity and friendship.
  • I really liked the friendship between the two main characters and adored Nathan.

What may have been better

  • I wish the big reveal to Nathan happened a little bit earlier.

Content warning:

Disowning parents, Kicked out of the house, panic attacks and depression, peer pressure into drinking, constant misgendering, stressful coming out.

Bottom line

I Wish You All the Best by Mason Deaver is an emotional and heart wrenching book that will not just educate the readers but also an entertaining read. Kudos to the author in maintaining that delicate balance.

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I Wish You All the Best by Mason Deaver – A book review

Sadie by Courtney Summers- A book review

How do you choose between an engaging plot and a compelling writing, if you can have only one of them? Tough call, right? Welcome to my hell and with that thought in your mind let us review Sadie by Courtney Summers.

About the book

Cover Sadie by Courtney Summers

Book Name: Sadie

Author: Courtney Summers

Genre: Fiction – Thriller, Young Adult

Characters: Sadie and Mattie Hunter

Setting: ColoradoThe USA

The plot

Sadie and Mattie knew what it is to be left to fend for themselves, and as an elder sister Sadie had always been hard Mattie to protect her from the world as she knew it. But when Mattie is found dead and no one would help them, Sadie had to take things in her own hands in finding out who did that to her.

But then Sadie went missing too. The consensus was she went chasing her sister’s killer and no one knows anything about it.

Now, over a year after Mattie’s body was found, West McCray is hosting an investigative reporting podcast called The Girls and attempts to solve the case of Mattie’s death (and finding Sadie) by following Sadie’s journey.

Where does this investigation unearth? Did Sadie find the killer? Does it ends well for the team and Sadie? Well, you will have to read Sadie by Courtney Summers to know more.

My initial thoughts

The book Sadie follows two narratives – the podcast by West McCray in the present day (which hooked me in right from the minute go) and Sadie’s point of view, which didn’t work for me.

Sure there were a lot of sad things happening and there are characters that are super interesting. But somehow I never felt engrossed in Sadie’s narrative nor it impacted me, as much as it should have.

Do not get me wrong, the plot itself was just interesting and predictable. And I am ok with that, but the point that the storyline was not engaging me emotionally was a huge let down for me.

But the author’s compelling writing style kept me involved until the end. Talking of the ending, it may not work for all, some may feel disappointed even, but for me worked so well.

What I loved the most about Sadie was the characters, that were well developed and had so much depth. Be it Sadie’s stuttering and her intense need to be protective of her sister, or Mattie’s naivete or hopefulness, made me root for their turbulent relationship.

Sadie deals with hard and intense subjects like sexual abuse, pedophilia and child pornography, abandonment and neglect by parents. But Ms Summers has done a great job in keeping it still appropriate for a young adult audience (well, the upper limits of YA/NA) as well as adults.

What worked for me

  • I loved Summers’ compelling and readable writing style.
  • The characters and their detailing were perfect. I loved the multi faceted characters.
  • One more round of applause for not making it gory with details about the rape/murder/pedophilia issues, given that its YA or NA audience.
  • Despite that it might have been hit or miss, I personally loved the ending. In fact, I would have been disappointed if it would have ended any other way, having read the current ending.

What may have been better

  • I wish the storyline was more engaging and emotionally involving me.

Bottom line

If you are looking a young/new adult thriller with an interesting premise, Sadie might be a good pick. Just heed to the warning about the subject matter, especially if you are younger by age and heart.

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