Friday, May 24, 2013

Review: The s-word by Chelsea Pitcher

The S-WordThe s-word
by Chelsea Pitcher
Paperback, 304 pages
Released: May 7th 2013
Publisher: Gallery Books
Purchase: Amazon | BookDepository
*A copy was gifted by the author.

Synopsis via Goodreads:

First it was SLUT scribbled all over Lizzie Hart’s locker.
But one week after Lizzie kills herself, SUICIDE SLUT replaces it—in Lizzie's looping scrawl.
Lizzie’s reputation is destroyed when she's caught in bed with her best friend’s boyfriend on prom night. With the whole school turned against her, and Angie not speaking to her, Lizzie takes her own life. But someone isn’t letting her go quietly. As graffiti and photocopies of Lizzie’s diary plaster the school, Angie begins a relentless investigation into who, exactly, made Lizzie feel she didn’t deserve to keep living. And while she claims she simply wants to punish Lizzie’s tormentors, Angie's own anguish over abandoning her best friend will drive her deep into the dark, twisted side of Verity High—and she might not be able to pull herself back out.
Debut author Chelsea Pitcher daringly depicts the harsh reality of modern high schools, where one bad decision can ruin a reputation, and one cruel word can ruin a life. Angie’s quest for the truth behind Lizzie’s suicide is addictive and thrilling, and her razor-sharp wit and fierce sleuthing skills makes her impossible not to root for—even when it becomes clear that both avenging Lizzie and avoiding self-destruction might not be possible.

I have mix feelings in regards to the story. There were aspects that stood out emotionally and realistically. Like the main topics: bullying and abuse. Then there was Angie and her mission to seek vengeance. I wasn't really understanding that concept but as the story went along I developed a interest. And even though I didn't exactly relate with her character, there were attributes I thought came out really well: feeling regret and the sense of hatred towards everyone as well as herself. I also liked that towards the end she started loving herself again and she grew to love someone else as well. 
Jesse's character was confusing to me as it was to Angie. I enjoyed having him in the story because he brought on some humor as well as serious discoveries. I liked how he and Angie were with each other and how natural and unforced their feelings were. 

Other things I thought were well delivered was the strong factor of the effects of bullying, and the main character wanting do something about it the more mature she got throughout the story. What happened to Lizzie was terrible. And no one should ever experience that. The fact that people tormented her after what happened prom night was like being violated all over again. Regardless if they found out what happened to her, I'm pretty sure they'd only keep hurting her because it was just how they were. Its sad that her best friend, Angie, wasn't brave enough to stand up for her and try to make it stop. But at least she tried after Lizzie died. 

We couldn't really get to know who Lizzie really was, based on her narration but it was great that the author revealed diary entries. I thought that was a good way of letting readers enter the mind of someone who obviously had a lot of pain to deal with. Lizzie's entries were like poetry; sorrowful and sweet moments that happened in her life. We also get to see, through subliminal writing just who her strong feelings were for, and who were the "monsters" in her dreams. One main one in particular was her dad, and I think the situation with him should have been handled way better, in terms of bringing it to light. 

There was also the element of surprise when I found out who really wrote the awful things after Lizzie's death. I didn't see that one coming so good job Chelsea, in keeping me interested. All in all, it was a good story, with the exception that some things seemed off and sometimes didn't make sense. Otherwise, I liked how emotional it was and the fact that the plot is based on an issue still going strong in society today. 


  1. Great review! I agree with you about not seeing that twist coming. It completely blindsided me too! Other than that, I agree with everything you said, especially about not getting to know Lizzie that much. Thanks for your thoughts!!

    ~Emily@Emily's Crammed Bookshelf

  2. Great review! I'm still questioning whether or not to read this book because all of the negative reviews.
    -Scott Reads It!

  3. I never ended up reading this one. I had it but gave it away instead be used the synopsis didnt sound like my type of book and the first shelter wasn't quite alluring. Eh. Good to see you liking it though!

    Great review, Shane! <33

  4. Great review! I liked this one even though I had some issues with it. I didn't really like Angie very much, but I loved Jesse. I thought that there were too many issues packed into one book and it kind of all became too much to me. I liked the diary entries though. I'm glad that you enjoyed this!

  5. This is one that I have been curious about, I'm still kinda on the fence about treading it. I'm glad you were able to enjoy it. Great review.

    Jenea @ Books Live Forever

  6. I just started this the other day. So far it is interesting but I am leery after all the reviews I have read. Not Expecting it to be spectacular. Thanks for the insight.


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