The Wandering Weekenders- Beyond Words A Blogger's Book Club

I swear the days just keep on flying by faster and faster, and I can’t believe that it’s already the last Friday in October, which means that it’s almost time for Halloween! We really don’t have anything planned this year for Halloween other than a doctor’s appointment and handing out candy to trick or treaters, but I’m kind of OK with that. I’m just hoping that means that I can finally get Chris to watch Hocus Pocus with me! October can’t pass without that, and October also can’t pass without me linking up for the Beyond Words: A Blogger’s Book Club with  Carolann and Christy! This month we read All The Ugly and Wonderful Things by Bryn Greenwood.

The Wandering Weekenders- Beyond Words- All The Ugly And Wonderful Things

Young Wavy is definitely a strange child. which is very apparent when she shows up at her Aunt’s house after her mom and dad are both sent to prison for dealing Meth and possession of Meth. Wavy doesn’t speak and she doesn’t eat, well at least not in front of anyone, but that doesn’t mean that she can’t take car of herself, which is exactly what she does when her mom is released from prison with her newborn brother. A couple of years later, not too long after starting to live with her mom again, one of the guys that helps with her dad’s Meth business crashes in their front yard. After he recovers, Kellen and Wavy form a special bond and she opens up to him in ways that she hasn’t been able to with anybody else. Over the years that special relationship develops into more than a friendship, but not everybody can understand the love that Kellen and Wavy have for each other.

Oh my goodness where to even start with this book! I guess that I should first start with Wavy. With Wavy’s upbringing I’m seriously so surprised that she was able to even function at the level that she did. Her mom was a clean freak that literally washed her mouth out with soap and bleach when she would d something that she deemed as “dirty” and then her father was a Meth dealer that constantly cheated on and abused her mother right in front of her. It literally just breaks my heart to think about everything that this girl has been through, and she’s not even a real person. But it’s also so sad to think about all the kids that do go through similar things on a daily basis.

I really did love Kellen and Wavy’s relationship, at least how it started out. He was kind of like the big teddy bear and best friend that she could turn to when things started to get rough. He also protected her and looked after her. She could have ridden the bus to school, but he drove her on his motorcycle so she didn’t have to deal with the other kids bullying her. He also brought her groceries so she could cook for her and her brother because her mother was too addicted to actually provide for her children.

What I didn’t like was how things progressed very quickly. At the age of 13 or 14 Wavy started to put moves on Kellen and he wasn’t able to resist. They started having a physical relationship and even though I knew that he hadn’t really thought about her in that way before I couldn’t get over how creepy it made me feel. I don’t have an issue with a big age difference between people who are involved romantically, but Wavy was just too young. I think that the author wrote about the character of Wavy and everything that she had been through so that you could see that she was probably way older than what she was, but it still really creeped me out!

Even though I didn’t care for how young Wavy was when she and Kellen started becoming romantically involved, I still really enjoyed this book. It made me uncomfortable in some ways, but I thought that the way the author had written the book was a really interesting way to introduce you to the characters and tell their story. She sometimes used very minor characters points of view to explain a part of a story without giving you insight into what the main characters were thinking. I don’t think that it could work all the time, but it really worked in this instance.

So bottom line is while this book made me really uncomfortable at times, I still really enjoyed it and couldn’t stop reading it. While I didn’t agree with how young Wavy was when her and Kellen started having a more physical and romantic relationship, the author created the characters and their relationships in such a way that you didn’t really mind too much. I think that’s because she created characters that were going against the odds so much that you just wanted them to be happy. I gave this a 4/5 stars and definitely recommend it to everyone if you haven’t read it by now. Be sure to linkup with us next month when we read Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng!

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Beyond Words- All The Ugly And Wonderful Things- While this book definitely made me feel uncomfortable, it definitely was a great read!

  • I’m with ya on how fast the months are flying by! Sounds like an interesting read. Always love finding out about new books. Enjoy the weekend lovely lady! xo Emily @ Martinis & Bikinis

    • This one definitely made me feel uncomfortable, but it was a really good read! I hope that you get the chance to pick it up!

  • Living on Cloud Nine

    This sounds like a winner and I hope you, my dear, has a winner of a weekend!! Xo

  • Sounds great, I will suggest this to my book club! Have a spooktacular weekend!

    • I think that it’d make a great book club book because it’s so controversial! I hope that y’all decide to read it!

  • I love this review! I really thought they were going to wait until they were older to pursue a relationship and it definitely made me annoyed at Kellen to see him begin a physical relationship with her, because obviously it was up to him to stop things. But I loved how he protected her, cleaned up her house, bought her things, and made sure she got to school. It kind of reminded me of Lolita at first, but then I realized that this book was nothing like Lolita because Kellen wasn’t manipulating her at all and was’t a pedophile…. But seriously a 13 year old? …. These were my conflicting thoughts throughout the book!

    I also loved her use of the minor characters to explain parts of the story. This woman is a really talented writer and while this pol was super weird, I will definitely be reading her other books.

    • So I’ve never read Lolita, but I’ll definitely have to add it to my list! It was definitely up to Kellen to make sure that their relationship didn’t cross a line until she was older or until they were married, but I also understand that he felt conflicted because Wavy was so quiet and he didn’t want to lose his relationship with her by pushing her away. And I kept on telling Chris the entire time that I was reading this book that it was grossing me out a little bit, but I still really loved it.

      And I thought that it was so cool to hear about the story from the other character’s points of view! It made it so interesting! This was a really good choice for book club because I feel like there was so much to talk about!

  • Jen

    Yay for Hocus Pocus!!! It’s definitely a favorite in this house and I can’t wait to “watch” it with E this year. I mean to be honest she will just want down so she can play haha. I hope you’re having a great weekend!

    • I’m thinking that Chris and I will have to watch it tomorrow! We had a day dominated by football today! And hopefully y’all will get to watch it soon! It really is just perfect for the season!

  • Yay for Hocus Pocus! No Halloween is complete without that classic. This definitely sounds like an interesting read, although maybe a little uncomfortable at times. Adding it to my TBR list!

    • I definitely didn’t realize how uncomfortable this book would make me, but I was glad that I read it, it was so good! And we finally watched Hocus Pocus today and it was so good! It just doesn’t feel like Halloween without a little Hocus Pocus!

  • I’m glad that you liked this! 🙂 I haven’t read this, or any Celeste Ng yet! Excited for Hocus Pocus… I think we will watch it tomorrow! 🙂 XO – Alexandra

    Simply Alexandra: My Favorite Things

    • Hocus Pocus is seriously the best movie to watch during the Halloween season and I love that there was a marathon all day on Halloween! And you should definitely read this book, just make sure you’re ready to feel a little uncomfortable!

  • Nadine

    I am pretty sure that I have this on my TBR, but after reading your review I am definitely going to make sure! It sounds interesting.

    • I hope that you get to read it soon! I bet that you already had it on your list because I feel like it was making the rounds on SUYB last year. It was a really good read and I finally understand why everybody was raving about it for so long!

  • i was just looking at this book today actually and saw your shorter review on goodreads. i keep seeing this book everywhere and everyone loves it, but the age gap really puts me off a bit haha. i will read it one day i am sure!

    • The age gap really bothered me too, and I kept on telling Chris that it grossed me out the entire time that I was reading it. Beside that though, it was a great book, and I thought that the author did a great job of talking about why their relationship started!