Title: The Beginning of Everything
Author: Robyn Schneider
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Release Date: August 27, 2013
Source: ARC from BEA
Golden boy Ezra Faulkner believes everyone has a tragedy waiting for them--a single encounter after which everything that really matters will happen. His particular tragedy waited until he was primed to lose it all: in one spectacular night, a reckless driver shatters Ezra's knee, his athletic career, and his social life.No longer a front-running for Homecoming King, Ezra finds himself at the table of misfits, where he encounters new girl Cassidy Thorpe. Cassidy is unlike anyone Ezra's ever met, achingly effortless, fiercely intelligence, and determined to bring Ezra along on her endless adventures.But as Ezra dives into his new studies, new friendships, and new love, he learns that some people, like books, are easy to misread. And now he must consider: if one's singular tragedy has already hit and everything after it has mattered quite a bit, what happens when more misfortune strikes?Robyn Schneider's The Beginning of Everything is a lyrical, witty, and heart-wrenching novel about how difficult it is to play the part that people expect, and how new beginnings can stem from abrupt and tragic endings.
Robyn Schneider's debut, The Beginning of Everything, has been on my radar for so long that I was worried it couldn't possibly live up to my expectations. But I really didn't have anything to worry about. Because not only did it meet my crazy expectations, it completely surpassed them.
Ezra Faulkner knows more than anyone how one moment can completely change your life. Back at school for his senior year after having spent the summer recovering from injuries sustained in a car accident, Ezra doesn't know who he is and where he fits in anymore. Before the accident, Ezra was the golden boy. Now? Who knows. But there might be a silver lining to it all. If the accident hadn't happened, Ezra wouldn't have reconnected with Toby and he wouldn't have met Cassidy Thorpe. And without Cassidy, Ezra wouldn't have fallen in love.
I had so many hopes and dreams for The Beginning of Everything. I had talked this book up so much in my mind that I was almost afraid to read it. I was afraid it couldn't possibly live up to those hopes and dreams. But I really shouldn't have worried because Robyn Schneider and her story completely blew me away. In The Beginning of Everything, she wrote this absolutely amazing story that fully captured my attention and stole my heart. I have so much love for this book and its characters. This is a unique, special and incredibly touching story. As much as it made me smile and laugh, it also brought tears to my eyes and broke my heart. And that just made me love the story that much more. To the point that putting it all into words is proving to be quite difficult. And then, you know, there was Ezra.
How do I even begin to describe Ezra. No matter what I say or do, I just know that I'm not going to even come close to doing him justice. Ezra Faulkner stole my heart, there is no doubt about it. Right from page one I knew this would happen and there was still nothing I could do about it. I wanted the best for Ezra and at times I just wanted to give him a hug and tell him everything would be okay. But Ezra wasn't the only amazing character in this story. The secondary characters were all unique and memorable in their own way. Whether it was Toby's bow-ties, Austin's attachment to his electronics or Cassidy's crazy outfits, each character had something that made it so I wouldn't forget them any time soon.
In case it wasn't obvious: I have so much love for Robyn Schneider's The Beginning of Everything. It was so much more than I hoped it would. And it's books like The Beginning of Everything that are the reason I love contemporary stories as much as I do.