ARC Review: Sometimes Never, Sometimes Always

Click on the image to open the book's Goodreads page.

Click on the image to open the book’s Goodreads page.

Title: Sometimes Never, Sometimes Always
Authors: Elissa Janine Hoole
Publication Date: November 8, 2013
Publisher: Flux
Format: eARC

Acquisition: Netgalley

Purchase at: Amazon ll The Book Depository

Cassandra fears rocking the family boat. Instead, she sinks it. Assigned by her English teacher to write a poem that reveals her true self, Cassandra Randall is stuck. Her family’s religion is so overbearing, she can NEVER write about who she truly is. So Cass does what any self-respecting high school girl would do: she secretly begins writing a tarot-inspired advice blog. When Drew Godfrey, an awkward outcast with unwashed hair, writes to her, the situation spirals into what the school calls “a cyberbullying crisis” and what the church calls “sorcery.” Cass wants to be the kind of person who sticks up for the persecuted, who protects the victims the way she tries to protect her brother from the homophobes in her church. But what if she’s just another bully? What will it take for her to step up and tell the truth?

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I will just start out by saying that this book was not what I expected it to be, and I simply did not like it. This book is just not for me, but I don’t think that should stop anyone else from reading this because I found a couple of people who actually liked this. My review is basically my own feelings about Sometimes Never, Sometimes Always.

This book made me want to cry so bad because it was so awful. It’s 360 pages of torture. Well, not really. Some pages were pretty okay. The writing wasn’t that horrible, but I hate the characters, and most of what was happening in the story. And because I didn’t like it, I went really slow with reading this book.

Cassandra Randal is a coward. She says so herself. She is an atheist in a family of devout fundamentalists. She is afraid of being herself so she does what others tell her to do. However, when her English teacher assigns them to work on a poetry about themselves, Cass finds that she doesn’t know what to write about. She couldn’t write anything that is really of her own. I guess this book is about Cassandra finding herself, even though she did a shitty job doing so. She badly wanted to do something different from what others tell her to do so she buys some tarot cards and tried learning how to use them. Then she starts a blog and spreads an ad on her class newspaper. Things spiral out of control, and a lot of bad things happen. Add to that the very judgmental churchgoers and the really bitchy mean girls. Actually, Cass is a very judgmental and mean character too.

Now let’s go to the good parts of this book. I find it interesting that the chapters were divided according to a Facebook survey. I’m not sure if everyone is familiar with that, but there are these Facebook notes that spread around where you have to fill in the answers (usually about yourself) and tag others so that they can answer it too. The other two things, or rather people, I like in this book would be Darin and Eric. Eric is Cass’s older gay brother who always looks out for her. He’s fun and sweet. Darin is this really adorable guy in Cass’s English class. He’s this awkward kid who’s just so sweet and he loves drawing. Oh, her English teacher was a pretty cool guy every now and then.

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OVERALL, I did not really like this book. That might just be me though. I’m not that fond of the bullies and the mean main character. The pacing was quite slow for the first half of the book. The ending was a little anticlimactic or maybe it just didn’t really excite me. I wasn’t very moved. I do, however, love Darin and Eric.

RATING:

1.5-star

P.S. Thanks to Flux and Netgalley for my copy of Sometimes Never, Sometimes Always~

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Disclaimer:

  • This is all based on personal opinion, and as much as I’m open to other people’s opinions, I hope you understand that this is based on what I feel. I avoid giving out spoilers as much as possible, too.
  • I do not own most of the images I use, and some may be subject to editing.
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