Wow. I sucked this down in one sitting. I received this eBook from the author via Making Connection's ARR Program in exchange for an unbiased review. I was floored. While I didn't cry, this book still hit me like a ton of bricks.
There is actually a quote from the book that best captures the essence of its core more eloquently than I ever could...
"A good story though, is just that, a GOOD STORY. It's often written hastily and driven by emotion. It compels the reader to continue, and makes him feel like part of the experience. A good story, even complete fiction, delivers a truth of some kind... even if it's one that the reader isn't comfortable with."
The quote sums up the entire book. It did "compel" me to continue even through parts left me cringing. It's a heart wrenching journey of drugs and self discovery for Spencer. He is shadowed by the memory of his father; judged by others and himself by the sins and labels left in the wake of his father's death. Even years after his father's death, fate seems to have served Spencer a cold daily dose of the worst of humanity. Through Spencer's eyes, his journal, his dark path into steroids, the reader is swept along into the current.
I don't want to give anything away, but the ending was so emotional. I may not have cried, but my throat burned and my heart beat just for a moment along with Spencer's in empathy. I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys YA fiction. While there are brief romantic touches here and there, don NOT expect a romance. It will stay with me for some time.