ARC Review: The Opposite of Falling Apart

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BLURB

After losing his leg in a terrible car accident, Jonas Avery can’t wait to start over and go to college. Brennan Davis would like nothing more than to stay home and go to school, so she can keep her anxiety in check. When the two accidentally meet the summer before they move away, they’ll push each other to come to terms with what’s holding them back, even as they’re pulled closer to taking the biggest leap of all—falling in love. The Opposite of Falling Apart has more than 2.1 million reads on Wattpad.

|CW: Panic attacks, anti-Asian commentary, car accidents|

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Anxiety, PTSD, Disabled, Amputee

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⭐⭐⭐★

3.5 stars

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Disclaimer: Thanks to Netgalley and Wattpad books for providing me this ARC in exchange for an honest review.

This review is going to take a slightly different pattern than all my other reviews, because I don’t think I can structure it the same way.

The Opposite of Falling Apart follows teenagers, Jonas and Brenan, as they meet in a minor car accident the summer before college and through their first year in college and develop a friendship helping each other through that blooms to a romance while also working on their individual challenges.

The Opposite of Falling Apart was a book that dealt with heavier themes and I thought it handled them well.

When I first came across this book on Netgalley, the synopsis got interested in it, coupled with the fact that when I remember someone recommending the Wattpad version of this book to me when it still was still on Wattpad and when l used the site actively. I had high expectations for this book, and I can say it didn’t disappoint.

The Opposite of Falling Apart gave a candid look on it’s like to live with a mental illness and a disability. While I can’t say much for the disability or PTSD rep, the anxiety rep was really good.

One of the main characters, Brennan suffers from general anxiety disorder, while my anxiety isn’t as severe as hers, Brennan was one of the most relatable characters I’ve ever read. I understood her. Her reactions, her insecurities and that constant negative voice in her head. The way it seemed her own mind was against her. Everything. In some ways, reading about Brennan helped me discover some anxious traits in myself that I didn’t really think on.

While Brennan was a girl scared of the world, Jonas on the other hand was a boy angry at it. I really don’t know anything about being an amputee, but Good was able to capture Jonas’ emotions wonderfully . Jonas’ world has become divided between before and after. The Jonas he was before the accident and getting used to the new reality that’s his after. His anger about losing his leg, at people for trying too hard to treat him the way they think they should — like he was fragile and helpless and his mixed feelings about his family’s new dynamics. Jonas was caught up in his own tangle of grief of the person he was and the alternate version of a Jonas without The Accident.

I loved seeing Jonas and Brennan’s characters develop. Jonas, on his own part, coming to terms with how his life had changed, his new reality and coming to a sort of closure with the accident that changed; and Brennan learning how to take chances and that while her anxiety was a part of her, it wasn’t all of her. The romance between them was also nice. It was real, messy and sweet too.

My one problem with this book was its pacing, which ultimately affected my reading experience. The pacing in my opinion was too slow and the book seemed to drag on forever. I found it so bad that I was scared to open the book. Reading a book with an anxious character and where her emotions are fully explored, while it made me feel understood, it was like revisiting all my personal anxiety.

Ultimately it was a good book.

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What book with good mental illness rep do you think everyone should read?

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3 thoughts on “ARC Review: The Opposite of Falling Apart

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