All We Could Have Been by T.E. Carter

Book Review #269

Title: All We Could Have Been

Author: T.E. Carter

Publisher: Feiwel Friends

Genres: YA, Contemporary

Format: ARC, Paperback

Source: Pansing

Publication Date: April 23, 2019

Pages: 304

Five years ago, Lexie walked home from school after her older brother failed to pick her up. When she entered her house, her brother sat calmly, waiting for the police to come arrest him for the heinous crime he had just committed.

Treated like a criminal herself, Lexie now moves from school to school hiding who she is—who she’s related to. She struggles with loving her brother, the PTSD she now suffers from, and wanting to just live a normal life. But how can she be normal when she can’t even figure out how to just live?

This is a powerful look at the assumptions we make about people. Lexie’s emotional journey to separate her brother’s horrific act from herself is stunning and heartbreaking. This is Lexie’s story and journey—not her brother’s—and it will stay with you long after you turn the last page.

The pace of this story was painstakingly slow and it quickly made me lose interest. I find this book to be pretty cliche to me even though the main character is going through a difficult time with guilt, feeling helpless and hopeless.

I really hoped that even throughout the end, Lexie wouldn’t be treated so badly by the ones whom she considers to be her friends. She doesn’t deserve to be treated this way especially after going through so much. They should be consoling and comforting her because knowing that she has gone through all that, those who purposely hurt her are really inhumane. There’s really no hope for them anymore.

Though its also reassuring that she has found friends who are kind and full of empathy. I’m glad that little by little she’s finding happiness again.

I wish that the author would have elaborated even further for Lexie’s future and even what she plans to do after finishing high school. It may be the last thing on her mind but I find that it will make the readers feel assured that she’s moving on with her life and leaving the demons behind her. The ending was really abrupt too and a bit unresolved. It ended just like that.

This book has given me a perspective regarding someone who has dealt through a very rough patch and continuously living her life as a survivor and fighter. It was insightful that it gives across a message to be more cautious of our actions toward others.

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