A haunting and beautiful YA novel that is perfect for fans of Courtney Summers and Jessi Kirby, These Things I've Done is the story of a seventeen-year-old girl who accidentally caused her best friend’s death and, a year later, is still grappling with the consequences.
“A beautiful, wrenching depiction of loss, the aftermath, and an unexpected ray of light in the darkness. These Things I've Done is equal parts heartfelt and heartbreaking, and absolutely unputdownable.” —Gina Ciocca, author of Last Year's Mistake
“These Things I’ve Done is a raw and beautiful story about recovering and moving on in the aftermath of a tragedy, about the moments when self-forgiveness and peace feel unattainable. Dara’s journey through this struggle is compelling and deeply affecting. Her story will stay with readers long after the last page.” —Charlotte Huang, author of For the Record and Going Geek
BEFORE: Dara and Aubrey have been inseparable since they became best friends in sixth grade. Dara is the fearless one, Aubrey the prodigy, yet despite their differences, they support each other unconditionally. However, as they begin their sophomore year of high school, cracks in their friendship begin to form, testing the bond they always thought was unbreakable.
AFTER: It's been fifteen months since the accident that killed Aubrey, and not a day goes by that Dara isn't racked with guilt over her role in her best friend's death. Now, after spending a year away from home in order to escape the constant reminders of what happened, Dara is back at her old high school to start her senior year. Dara thought the worst thing about coming home would be confronting the memories of Aubrey that relentlessly haunt her, but she soon realizes it isn't half as difficult as seeing Ethan, Aubrey's brother, every day. Not just because he's a walking reminder of what she did, but because the more her feelings for him change, the more she knows she's betraying her best friend one final time.
|Product dimensions:||5.30(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.30(d)|
|Age Range:||14 Years|
About the Author
Rebecca Phillips lives in beautiful Nova Scotia, Canada, with her husband, two teenagers, and one spoiled-rotten cat. She’s the author of The Girl You Thought I Was, These Things I’ve Done, the Just You series, Out of Nowhere, Faking Perfect, and Any Other Girl. Visit Rebecca on her website, www.rebeccawritesya.com, and on Twitter @RebeccaWritesYA.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I enjoyed reading this book.
At first I thought the whole book was going to be one where you are set up to feel bad for the main character who is just throwing herself a pity party. I was so happy I was completely incorrect about this asumption. You could tell there was so much more to the story than the rumors that were going around and how Dara saw what actually happened, due to the extreme guilt she was facing. It was definitely not a black or white situation, there was a lot of gray area. I felt very connected to Dara in some ways because I also suffer from anxiety, and had a terrible experience at one point in my life. It made me feel connected to her in some ways, especially about guilt and how it can tear people apart. I thought both instances (anxiety and guilt) were portrayed wonderfully throughout the whole book. I loved that the chapters alternated (for the most part) between Dara’s sophomore year and senior year of highschool. I also oved that you got different perspectives of things. You see how this tragedy has affected Ethan and Dara so much differently, but ultimately changed both of their lives. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who wants a deeper contemporary read. One that deals with tough topics in a very sensitive and realistic way. I highly enjoyed this book and do see myself rereading it over and over many times.
THESE THINGS I'VE DONE is equally heartbreaking and heartwarming and is such a beautiful story of friendship, grief, love, and forgiveness. I really enjoyed the way Phillips flips back and forth between Dara's present and her past. We get to see the build up to the terrible event that resulted in the tragic death of her best friend as well as the emotional aftermath that she has to attempt to cope with. The pacing of the story was perfect, and the moments when Phillips chooses to switch from past to present and vice versa were perfectly timed and kept me glued to the pages. Though there are some really sad and difficult moments in this story, there are also some really beautiful, hope-filled moments as well. It's true that sometimes the hardest person to forgive is yourself, and Dara has to learn that lesson in the most difficult of ways in this poignant and heartfelt story. This is the first book of Rebecca Phillips's that I've read, and I will certainly be reading more in the future.
“Mistakes happen, we can hate ourselves for them all we want, but it doesn’t help anything. It just ends up hurting us too.” I wanted an emotional read, and I got it! These Things I’ve Done is a beautifully powerful story of forgiveness- forgiveness for yourself and for things you can’t undo. Wracked with the guilt she feels after her best friend Aubrey’s death, Dara Shepard returns home to confront her memories and her remorse. But, Dara begins spending time with Ethan, Aubrey’s brother, and starts to guilt for an entirely different reason. As Ethan and Dara grow closer, Dara worries she’d betraying her friend as she finally begins to heal. Things I Liked This is such an emotionally resonant novel. You feel Dara’s overwhelming melancholy at the beginning of the story. She’s still coming to terms with her guilt and pain. There’s a sorrowful resignation that really breaks your heart. The flashbacks to sophomore year were really perfect. They allowed us to see Dara as a fearless girl unable to turn down a dare, so it’s all the more devastating where she is now. It also helped establish Dara and Aubrey’s relationship. They are the best of best friends, supportive, caring, goofy. You become invested in their relationship so you care about Dara’s emotional journey. Ethan McCrae is one of the nicest people ever. He’s so kind-hearted and just this effervescent ray of light that you want him to be happy. And his relationship with Dara develops perfectly - they talk to each other. It was so nice to see them be so open, and even when they’re scared or it’s hard, they support each other. I really liked Dara’s family. After Dara comes back the dynamic is off, but they only want what’s best for her. She has some fantastic moments with her brother, Tobias, in the second half that I loved, and a moving conversation with her dad that made me a little misty eyed. Things I Didn’t Like I would have liked to see how Dara dealt with the immediate aftermath of Aubrey’s death. It is referenced a couple times, but I would have liked to be with her when she was going through those chaotic and confusing emotions. Wanting more from the story isn’t that strong of a negative, but it’s all I got. This story was so easy to become invested in - Dara’s emotions are so tangible that it really feels like you’re on this journey with her. This was a fantastic story of guilt, forgiveness, and acceptance that tugs at your heartstrings. I received a copy of the books from HarperTeen via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.