TITLE: The Art of Losing
AUTHOR: Lizzy Mason
AGE RANGE: YA
On one terrible night, 17-year-old Harley Langston’s life changes forever. At a party she discovers her younger sister, Audrey, hooking up with her boyfriend, Mike—and she abandons them both in a rage. When Mike drunkenly attempts to drive Audrey home, he crashes and Audrey ends up in a coma. Now Harley is left with guilt, grief, pain and the undeniable truth that her ex-boyfriend (who is relatively unscathed) has a drinking problem. So it’s a surprise that she finds herself reconnecting with Raf, a neighbor and childhood friend who’s recently out of rehab and still wrestling with his own demons.
DNF @ 64%
There’s nothing at all wrong with The Art of Losing — in fact, it has a lot going for it! — but I don’t have a lot to say about it in this review. I mean, the characters are enjoyable, the writing is solid, and the author takes a long and honest look at a lot of really important themes that affect teens in a big way, such as:
- the effects of irresponsible drinking
- the potential risks of any substance abuse
- the ability for teens and young adults to become addicts
- the fact that society tends to not hold young men in authoritative positions (i.e., white cishet star athletes) to the same standards that their marginalized counterparts would be held to
(There’s also some great representation involved, such as the fact that our main character Harley is plus-sized and her love interest is Latinx!)
All of that said, I had a hard time really connecting to The Art of Losing (which surprises me, since substance abuse and addiction is something that hits very close to home for me after having many related experiences with family members) and just never seemed to find myself compelled to keep reading. I tried both the eARC and the audiobook, and neither was ever able to “hook” me.
Thank you so much to the publisher for providing me with this ARC in exchange for an honest review!
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Awe man, I’m sorry this read didn’t grab you! I’ve seen the cover of this book everywhere, but reading your post is the first time for me actually reading what it was about–honestly it sounds like a time and a half in which I repeatedly would want to throttle someone.
Fingers and toes crossed that you get hooked on your next read!
LMAO. I feel like that sums up too many of my YA contemporary reading experiences this year and it makes me so sad ??
Sorry to see that this one wasn’t able to hook you, love! I do like the idea of this book discussing the danger and risks of substance abuse and DUI, but I’m not sure if this is a book that I’ll find myself itching to read. Perhaps I’ll try it some day in the future though. Great review, Destiny! <3
Thank you, love! It’s definitely such an important topic, just not sure the writing was there to support it in the way I wish it had been. I do think I might give this one another try when I’m in more of a YA contemporary mood someday, though! I’ve just been struggling with the genre in general this year!
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