Seventeen-year-old Amelia Gannon (just "Gannon" to her friends) is invisible to almost everyone in her life. To her parents, to her teachers-even her best friend, who is more interested in bumming cigarettes than bonding. Some days the only way Gannon knows she is real is by carving bloody lines into the flesh of her stomach.
Then she meets Michael Brooks, and for the first time, she feels like she is being seen to the core of her being. Obnoxious, controlling, damaged, and addictive, he inserts himself into her life until all her scars are exposed. Each moment together is a passionate, painful relief.
But as the relationship deepens, Gannon starts to feel as if she's standing at the foot of a dam about to burst. She's given up everything and everyone in her life for him, but somehow nothing is enough for Brooks-until he poses the ultimate test.
Bleed Like Me is a piercing, intimate portrayal of the danger of a love so obsessive it becomes its own biggest threat.
Kindle Edition, 288 pages
Expected publication: October 7th 2014 by Simon Pulse
Genre: Young Adult/Contemporary
I received an advanced readers copy of this book from Simon Pulse via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!
I don't know where to begin with this book. It was definitely a dark and almost haunting read and I was left speechless in the end.
Brooks and Gannon are both broken and suffer deeply. Although the book doesn't specifically say, they are both living with mental illness or at the very least mental instability. It is the dark and unspoken things that seem to draw them to each other. Before long they are trading their other habits for each other but one obsession is just as dangerous as the other and their addiction to each other is as powerful as any drug.
I have to admit that I skimmed a few of the early reviews of this book and although most were very favourable there were a few negative ones. The negative ones claimed there was no point to the story and I have to strongly disagree with that. It is true that this book does not ooze rainbows and unicorns and there is no silver lining but this is why the book has such an impact. It is raw and honest while dealing with some pretty ugly topics. Nothing is glorified within the pages which, in my opinion, gives it more depth and life. There are people dealing with these issues every day and things that happen in the book do happen in real life. Desir tackles the subject beautifully without sugar coating or omitting the details. Not all stories are "once upon a time" stories and not all can have a "happily ever after."
This book is going to stay with me for a long time. The four words I would use to describe it would be dark, powerful, haunting and relevant. I applaud Desir for her honesty and ability to make the reader think. This book would make for great group discussions especially in a high school or teenage environment. Job well done!
About the Author
C. Desir writes dark contemporary fiction for young adults. She lives with her husband, three small children, and overly enthusiastic dog outside of Chicago. She has volunteered as a rape victim activist for more than ten years, including providing direct service as an advocate in hospital ERs. She also works as an editor at Samhain Publishing.
Connect with C. Desir