Published by Simon Pulse on July, 2009
Genres: Contemporary, Loss & Grief
Owen, Frank, Audrey, and Jin-Ae have one thing in common: they all want to die. When they meet online after each attempts suicide and fails, the four teens make a deadly pact: they will escape together on a summer road trip to visit the sites of celebrity suicidesâ€¦and at their final destination, they will all end their lives.
As they drive cross-country, bonding over their dark impulses, sharing their deepest secrets and desires, living it up, hooking up, and becoming true friends, each must decide whether life is worth livingâ€“or if thereâ€™s no turning back.
I would give this one a 3.5 if possible, purely because of the ‘staying factor’ it delivers. You’re left thinking about this story and its characters long after you close the last page.
My lower rating of Crash Into Me had everything to do with the characters. I didn’t particularly like any of them, especially the ‘main’ two: Owen and Audrey. I realize all four teens had gone through something terrible at one point (or more) in their lives and had undisclosed secrets that weren’t divulged in the pages, but Audrey especially got to me more than the other three. I’ve come across a lot of people like her in my life; people who lie to fit in. I’ve known some people who have gone through (for real) what she lied about and you absolutely cannot take someone elses real and life-destroying problem and wear it, wanting other’s pity and sympathy. It’s just wrong.
I know she was only fourteen/fifteen during the events of this story, but come on. I don’t particularly know why I didn’t like Owen, the narrator. I just didn’t. Jin-Ae was probably the only one of the four I remotely liked.
Crash Into Me wasn’t very description-heavy. It was mostly made up of dialogue (IM messages as well) which kept it quick paced and ‘inside’ of the story, but I think some things needed more description and after reading a lot of descriptive stories in the past few weeks, it somehow felt lacking. I guess I needed something to remind me that there are other styles of writing out there in the YA market still. Heh.
I wouldn’t say ‘read this book’ if you get uncomfortable around the topic of suicide or if it hits close to home for you. At first, this book goes on making it look like suicide is a good answer. It’s hard to describe without sparking a debate here, because at the end the book gives you the message that there IS something to live for and all the characters finally see that, BUT, at the start they’re all pretty set that it is the right and final solution to all their problems. So, obviously, it’s not for the faint of heart. There’s also drinking, drugs, sex… all that stuff.
I really did enjoy this book. I probably would’ve read it in one go if I hadn’t finished Crescendo in one hit just hours before. I slept on it, then picked it up as soon as I was awake enough to do so. It’s not very long in comparison to a lot of other stories and once you get sucked in to the world of these characters you won’t realize how many pages you’ve actually flicked through.
Recommended to: Anyone wanting a gritty and ‘real’ tale. Because of it’s sensitive subject matter, I push it more to ‘mature’ readers of young adult fiction.