Book Review: The Beginning of Everything by Robyn Schneider

Disclosure: I read a copy that had the original title of "Severed Heads, Broken Hearts".

This book was quite a read. I was actually expecting more of a comedy but this really was a tragedy. It definitely had its funny parts and I think it is still pretty entertaining of a story. Schneider starts out by telling the story of a tragedy that happened to a boy on his birthday. He caught a severed head on a Disneyland ride, but it was the kids best friend that is telling the story and who is also the main character. Ezra Faulkner was in a terrible car accident. He went from being a Tennis star to crippled and not being able to play tennis at all.

Faulkner tries to decide what he really wants. If he wants to try to go back to his popular friends and see if he can still be apart of that crowd even as a crippled or see if there is something better for him in high school. When Ezra reconnects with Toby his 6th grade best friend who was the one that caught the severed head at Disneyland, he makes a whole new life for himself. When Cassidy Thorpe, the new girl in town, starts at the school, he doesn't expect to have his entire world turned upside down. Now Faulkner is on the debate team, he can no longer play tennis and he lots his girlfriend and his friends the night of a tragic accident. Faulkner learns that there is more to life than just popularity because you can have friends that actually care what happen to you.

Cassidy Thorpe moves back home from her prep school and she starts going to a new school. What she doesn't expect is for this school to turn her entire life upside down. Cassidy is a champion at debate but when she leaves her prep school she also quits debate so when Ezra signs her up as a joke and Cassidy finds out she is not happy at all. Cassidy decides that she is going to make Ezra her new protegé. Cassidy didn't expect to fall in love with Ezra but it happened and now she has to deal with the outcome.

I have to say that I really enjoyed Schneider's characters. I think they were written very well. I was not expecting this story to be from a male's perspective but I have to say that I really enjoyed it. There aren't too many stories out there that are told from a guy's point of view in newer young adult books. I love that this story was tragic yet hilarious at the same time. Robyn Schneider definitely keeps the reader on their toes as they dive into this novel. Toby, Ezra, and Cassidy all have had very tragic things happen to them in life but each one of them figures out how to keep moving on. How to continue life and I love that about this story. It doesn't show characters giving up and throwing in the towel it shows the reader that these characters are every day kids and they are able to trek on with their lives and figure out how to make it work. I think these characters were thought out quite nicely.

The story line and plot make for quite a story. I was completely expecting to laugh and be entertained but in the end I felt ad for the characters and hoped that things would work out. This is definitely a tragedy at its finest but it still has humorous stories. I couldn't put this story down at all. I was addicted. I wanted to know what was going to happen next and what choices the characters were going to make. I am definitely looking forward to Robyn Schneider's next novel because this one was a great debut.

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