The Truth About Alice by Jennifer Mathieu

The truth about alice

Everyone knows Alice slept with two guys at one party.

But did you know Alice was sexting Brandon when he crashed his car?

It’s true. Ask ANYBODY.

Rumor has it that Alice Franklin is a slut. It’s written all over the bathroom stall at Healy High for everyone to see. And after star quarterback Brandon Fitzsimmons dies in a car accident, the rumors start to spiral out of control.

In this remarkable debut novel, four Healy High students—the girl who has the infamous party, the car accident survivor, the former best friend, and the boy next door—tell all they know.

But exactly what is the truth about Alice? In the end there’s only one person to ask: Alice herself. (Goodreads)

I have had this book on my TBR for absolutely ages now. The problem was that I couldn’t actually find a copy here in Germany. However, I found one and I read it. 🙂 I was a bit wary actually going into this book because of the subject matter, however, I did mostly enjoy it.

The story is told through the perspectives of Alice’s peers – people who used to be her friends and an unexpected new friend. From the very first page, the style of writing reminded me of my GCSE final practical Drama exam in that it was a monologue. Throughout my then performance, I had to do a variety of different monologues and it took me straight back to my 16 year old self. This involves the reader on a much deeper level than a normal story would because the characters are talking directly to us rather than having that “fourth wall” effect in the sense that we don’t normally exist within the story. The way in which the characters talk to us as well is almost like we are new people in town and they are bringing us up to speed with everything that happened to and around Alice and the events that led up to it.
The development of each individual character is fairly prominent throughout the entire book. At first, most of the teenagers come across as bratty, petty and fairly shallow people who have seemingly picked on Alice for no good reason other than because they can. However, as their stories begin to unfold, we begin to learn why they started the rumours that they started and the events that led up Alice becoming a complete outcast.
The one character who seems to stay the same throughout the book is Kurt. However, he is not one of the characters who turns on Alice, rather someone who turns out to be an unexpected friend. He doesn’t do anything to hurt Alice and even helps her when no one else will. He stays true to himself throughout the entire book which makes him, in my opinion, a very strong character. He refuses to go with the crowd and insult Alice like the others do in order to remain “socially accepted”.
I liked the fact that this book was mostly told from the views of the people bullying Alice rather than from Alice’s perspective herself. This is quite refreshing when you compare it to other books of both the same genre and subject material in the sense that we are almost always reading from the view of those who are being bullied. We can never see it from the other side.
While I mostly enjoyed the book and the style of writing itself, the ending still had me a little bit annoyed. I was mostly annoyed about the fact that nothing changed as such for Alice. I mean, she gained a new friend etc, but the people who really caused her suffering and her social problems never got what they deserved. It was almost like they could carry on as if nothing had happened without reaping any repercussions.
I gave this book 4/5 stars.

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