Title: History Is All You Left Me
Author: Adam Silvera
Genre: Contemporary, Young Adult, LGBTQ+
Page Count: 294
OCD-afflicted seventeen-year-old, Griffin, has just lost his first love – his best friend, ex-boyfriend and the boy he believed to be his ultimate life partner – in a drowning accident. In a desperate attempt to hold onto every last piece of the past, a broken Griffin forges a friendship with Theo’s new college boyfriend, Jackson. And Griffin will stop at nothing to learn every detail of Theo’s new college life, and ultimate death. But as the grieving pair grows closer, readers will question Griffin’s own version of the truth – both in terms of what he’s willing to hide, and what true love ultimately means…
I thought this would be a nice post for the start of June which is LGBT pride month! I will try and post some LGBT–themed posts throughout the month!
(Yes, that took so long, but it looks pretty)
This is going to be a tough review to write… this book left me with a whole truckload of feels. This book took me about two weeks to finish, and one of those weeks I didn’t read it almost at all because I had to recover mentally from all of the heartbreak and grief in this book. This is not a book to be taken lightly, y’all. This book is emotional, heart wrenching, and overall just plain moving.
“I was in love and love died and the pain you’ve left isn’t pain I can see myself having the strength to face again.”
Our protagonist Griffin lost his boyfriend – or, well – his ex boyfriend in a drowning accident. This book follows his grief in an interesting way. Every other chapter we follow Griffin and his ex’s history together – starting with them as best friends. Usually I am not a big fan of flashbacks in books because they can oftentimes become confusing but if I had read this book without the flashbacks, I wouldn’t have been as connected to the characters as I was.
I really enjoyed reading about how the characters in this book dealt with this situation. Nobody dealt with it perfectly – especially Griffin – and that’s what makes the characters fleshed out human beings. The reader is transported into the mind of Griffin who has OCD that only gets worse as the book goes on – as he is dealing with Theo’s death. I found it really interesting to read about someone with OCD tendencies and I think that Silvera did an amazing job writing from the point of view of someone with these tendencies.
Although I do think this book was absolutely amazing as a whole, Griffin made some questionable decisions and he wasn’t exactly a likable character. He does grow throughout the book, though, and by the end he does understand his mistakes and apologizes for them.
I do also like how present the parents in this book were. One of my biggest book pet peeves is whenever the parents in books aren’t present in their kids lives. I did think the parents let a little too many things slide, but it is understandable to some extent since Griffin was grieving.
I also loved the diversity in this book! If I’m not mistaken, Griffin is hispanic? This is merely just a guess by how his appearance was described as well as the ethnicity of the author. There was also (obviously) LGBTQ+ themes in this book which is always a plus, and like I mentioned earlier, the main character struggles with OCD.
My Rating: 4.5 Stars
Overall this book had a lot of great aspects to it and amazing writing by an author I want to read more from, and is a great book for those that are looking for something diverse to read. I do warn that it’s very emotional and reading half the book in one sitting (like I did… oops) will put you into a state where your brain is numb and you feel like everything is painted in gray. Highly recommended!