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Posted May 3, 2014
(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a re
(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to HarperCollins and Edelweiss.)
17-year-old Sara didn’t want Emma Putnam to kill herself, she just wanted her to stop sleeping with her boyfriend, but that’s not the way the general public saw things when Emma committed suicide.
Did Sara’s bullying lead to Emma’s death though? And should Sara and her friends be held responsible?
This was an interesting story about bullying, but I could definitely see both sides of the story.
Sara was quiet a hard character. She believed that she was in the right, and while she didn’t want Emma to kill herself, she still thought that Emma had brought the bullying on herself for sleeping with other people’s boyfriends, which to be quite honest, she kind-of did.
The storyline in this was pretty good. I know a lot of other people haven’t liked this book, but I did. I was really interested to find out what exactly had been going on, and how Emma came to commit suicide, and while the bullying was bad at times, I liked how we saw things from the bully’s perspective rather than the victims. At face value it may have seemed that Sara and her friends were just bullying Emma, but for Sara it wasn’t that simple.
This is where I can see both sides of the story; because yes – Sara was calling Emma nasty names on facebook, and pulling mean pranks on her, but also – Emma was flirting with, and having sex with Sara’s boyfriend behind her back. Okay, Sara should maybe have gotten angry with her boyfriend as well as Emma, but when Emma was going around sleeping with as many boys as possible, you can see why Sara was annoyed.
I think a lot of the problems in this book were due to peer pressure, because Sara most likely would not have thought up these pranks on her own, and she wouldn’t have spent an hour calling Emma names on facebook if there was nobody else around encouraging her to go on.
I think this book could have been improved if we’d had access to Emma’s point of view as well. I felt like I was only getting half of the story all the time, as who knows if the information Sara was getting about Emma was really true? Did Emma sleep with Dylan? Who instigated it? Was Emma really going around sleeping with as many boys as possible? Was she doing this for attention? Or was she purposely trying to hurt the girls that the guys were dating? Were there any signs that Emma was suicidal? Could someone have prevented her suicide somehow?
The ending to this was satisfactory, although we didn’t find out 100% what punishment the girls received for their part in driving Emma to suicide. I did enjoy this book though, and I would definitely read another book by this author.
Overall; an interesting story about bullying.
8 out of 10.
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Posted May 20, 2014
Unfortunately bullying exists in all areas of society, both chil
Unfortunately bullying exists in all areas of society, both children and adults suffer and bullies can leave a lasting impact on the lives of everyone they touch. Interestingly, Amanda Maciel has chosen to tell Tease from the point of view of the bully, forcing the reader to question who the term of 'victim' applies to, thus I have found my rating and review of Tease very difficult. It is a complicated and emotive story in which I felt manipulated by the author to feel sympathy for the protagonist, who has committed an crime I would normally rush to condemn.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Initially I found Sara selfish, abrasive and defensive, refusing to admit any fault in Emma's demise and ultimate death. Yet as the story progresses Sara redeems herself and though she is still a deeply flawed character, I found her like-able.
Amanda Maciel does not withhold anything from her reader, in terms of the story and the language used. However, I never felt that this was purely for shock value, instead these often uncomfortable elements make Tease more believable, forcing us to think about the society we live in.
Yes, Tease is a difficult novel to read in terms of its openness and honesty, but it reminds us that everyone is culpable despite the way 'facts' can be presented. I admire Amanda Maciel's bravery for approaching this topic in such an radical way and would like to read more of her work.
I was given Tease as a complimentary review copy, but this has had no influence on my opinion.