A twisted tragedy leaves Brooke and her siblings on their own in this provocative new novel from the New York Timesbestselling author of The Way I Used To Be.
How do you let go of something you’ve never had?
Junior year for Brooke Winters is supposed to be about change. She’s transferring schools, starting fresh, and making plans for college so she can finally leave her hometown, her family, and her past behind.
But all of her dreams are shattered one hot summer afternoon when her mother is arrested for killing Brooke’s abusive father. No one really knows what happened that day, if it was premeditated or self-defense, whether it was right or wrong. And now Brooke and her siblings are on their own.
In a year of firsts—the first year without parents, first love, first heartbreak, and her first taste of freedom—Brooke must confront the shadow of her family’s violence and dysfunction, as she struggles to embrace her identity, finds her true place in the world, and learns how to let go.
“…you and me, Brooke, we need to be careful with people. Callie, too.”
“What do you mean?”
“I mean you have to watch how you treat people. You have to watch how you let people treat you. They’re in us, both of them.”
I have read many many books about abuse. Books about living in abuse and surviving it. Books about child abuse, spousal abuse, and even abuse from strangers. Many books however seem to gloss over the after. Many make it seem like initially its hard but then all better and you are stronger and better than ever. While some of that is true it is never really that simple and that is what I loved about The Last to Let Go.
Amber Smith tackles the after and the loss after child abuse. In The Last to Let Go Brooke struggles with all the hatred, the pain and the very real confusion left in the wake of the abuse being over. The added twist of the mother makes it more difficult but you can feel all the stress pain and coping Brooke, Callie, and Aaron must all do, in their own way, to come out on the other side of everything. The struggle of the pain their father caused, the pain even their mother caused, people’s perception who don’t understand and even with the fact that not every memory is bad. Brooke who struggles most with all the events must find a way to come out and not follow that same path. That they must be very careful in how they treat other people and how they allow other people to treat them.
This was an amazing read! So real and strong the characters just suck you in and you can’t stop until the end! The Last to Let Go is another win for Amber Smith and I can’t wait for more. You can feel the heart she puts into every book.
(Also check out her First book The Way I Used to Be)
(Coming soon! Something Like Gravity)