The Beauty That Remains
by Ashley Woodfolk
My rating: 4 stars
Publisher: Delacorte Press (March 6, 2018)
Publication Date: March 6, 2018
Genre: YA Literature & Fiction
Print Length: 336 pages
We've lost everything...and found ourselves.
Music brought Autumn, Shay, and Logan together. Death might pull them apart.
Autumn always knew exactly who she was: a talented artist and a loyal friend. Shay was defined by two things: her bond with her twin sister, Sasha, and her love of music. And Logan has always turned to writing love songs when his real love life was a little less than perfect.
But when tragedy strikes each of them, somehow music is no longer enough. Now Logan is a guy who can't stop watching vlogs of his dead ex-boyfriend. Shay is a music blogger who's struggling to keep it together. And Autumn sends messages that she knows can never be answered.
Despite the odds, one band's music will reunite them and prove that after grief, beauty thrives in the people left behind.
The Beauty That Remains by Ashley Woodfolk
Dark, edgy and filled with emotional turmoil and the heavy feeling of loss, THE BEAUTY THAT REMAINS by Ashley Woodfolk tells the tale of a group of teens individually dealing with the loss of a loved one either through illness, suicide or a deadly accident. These are their stories, their reflections on the past, and their attempts to heal and give up the ghosts of guilt that haunt them. In the end, these seemingly individual struggles will find their healing through music and a band that, in a sense also died.
Ashley Woodfolk has given realism and life to her tale by not shying away from social issues that often carry stigmas, suicide, depression and LGBT awareness in an age group where hormones rage and emotional maturity has not been reached. Guilt also is a heavy them throughout this story. There is guilt of words said in moments of hurt and anger, guilt for surviving and guilt for not having done something, believing events would have played out differently.
Three deaths, the survivors left behind in pain and overwhelming grief, unable to move on as they rehash events, isolating themselves from both receiving and giving support.
Well written, heart wrenching and emotionally draining throughout, Ashley Woodfolk tells young adult readers it is okay to “feel”, yet unhealthy to not move forward. Certainly a book that will resonate with any reader who has loved and lost without finding a black and white road to closure, because just maybe, there is none, but life and love will go on as those lost will always be a part of those who survived.
Written in an edgy and slightly disjointed way, the atmosphere created seems to mirror the emotional turmoil being lived.
I received a complimentary ARC edition from Random House Children's/Delacorte Press!