Review: "Every Last Word" by Tamara Ireland Stone

EveryLastWordAuthor: Tamara Ireland Stone
Genre: Young Adult/Sicklit
Publication: Disney-Hyperion
Release Date: June 16th 2015
Pages: 368
Spoilers: None!
Special: YABC Staff Review
Rating: 5 Stars (5 / 5)

Thank you soooo much Disney-Hyperion for giving me this e-ARC through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review! Thanks to you, I found my next favorite book! This book is amazing!

Every Last Word tells the story of high-school junior Samantha – Sam. She suffers from Purely-Obsessive OCD but doesn’t want anybody to find out about it. She’s part of this group of popular girls, her so called ‘friends’ she’s known since middle school. But even from them, Sam hides a secret.

The story starts off with a flashback of an event that Sam doesn’t really wants to be reminded of. It’s the kind of flashback that makes shivers run down your spine. The flashback was a thrilling start and just made a point: this book will have you hooked until the end. I mean, seriously: the flashback at the beginning is genius. It will get you, as a reader, immediately involved with the story.

The flashback is only one chapter, so the second chapter is about Samantha, being obsessed with the number three. When she’s driving and has to park, the odometer has to be at three, or she will just drive another block just to make sure the three pops up when she shuts down the motor. And this is just one of the examples of OCD that Tamara describes perfectly in the book. Until this very moment, I didn’t really have an insight into OCD. It’s a pretty complicated mental health disorder but I think Tamara has put down a realistic character that speaks for a lot of people suffering from this disease.

The story really elaborates the struggles with her disease, as she finds out that keeping it a secret from her so called friends is pretty hard. But then she finds the Poet’s Corner and Caroline, and everything seems fine for a while – until at 4/5 of the book when a MAJOR plot twist will hit you. You won’t see it coming and it will make you emotional.

Every Last Word really knows how to depict a teenager’s life: school work, family, sports and relations with friends and boyfriends. Even though there must’ve been a thousand books written about teenagers and high school, this one seems to stand out because of its reality. This reality forms a connection with Sam’s mind. In literary terms, one could call it ‘the stream of consciousness’, in which you can follow the thoughts of a character. This was a big part of Every Last Word, and even though it sounds complicated, Tamara really elaborates the subject and adds a little bit of humor to lighten up such a ‘dark’ (mind me saying that Tamara also points out that having OCD, means you’re brain is special, not crazy?!) mental disorder.

I’m trying really hard to come up with something that I thought could’ve made the book even better, but I don’t think anything should be changed about either the book or the character Sam. Sam is a lovely character and you will find yourself rooting for her. She’s real, she’s honest and you will feel the conflict in her mind, as if it’s your own battle.

Every Last Word has been, so far, the best and most emotional read of 2015 – it got me hooked from the very first page. I found myself laughing and even crying real tears at the end of the book. This story has a special place in my heart.




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