All The Ugly and Wonderful Things: Part 5 [End of Book] – Overview/ Review (with Spoilers)

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And so we come to the end and it is filled with a lot of heartbreak and tears, but eventually the sun comes out. Yet, even as the light removes all the shadows and mysteries that were left, you will still be wiping away tears.

Summaries (with Commentary)

Part 5

In this part, Renee, Wavy’s college roommate, is introduced and becomes perhaps the first friend Wavy really has. Something she desperately needs for the college years seem to go smooth, academic wise, but her personal life not so much. For while Wavy is still a chorionic masturbator, she refuses the guys who take interest in her. Even after 7 years of being apart, she only wants Kellen.

Something which, after he is released on parole, she gets. However, it is only temporary since he legally can’t be with her unless his sentencing Judge rescinds the restriction. So, with Kellen not wanting to go to jail, nor continue to ruin Wavy’s life, he says they need to separate. Yet, neither truly want this. So, Wavy writes letters and tries to get the appeal put through. Also, she hunts for Donal who she wants to reunite with.

Lo and behold, she gets both wishes. The judge allows Wavy and Kellen to be together and, thanks to Kellen’s parole officer, who knows a private investigator, they find Donal. Someone who was in foster homes, after Sean’s overdose, and also was dealing with the juvenile corrections system.

Leaving just one thing left: Brenda. Thanks to her work, Wavy was severed from Kellen for 7 years but eventually, she is forgiven. After all, Wavy had once lost everything and now wants everything back, including her aunt. The one adult family member who actually gave a damn and cared. Maybe not how Wavy wanted her to, but something is sometimes better than nothing.

Overall: Positive (Buy) – Recommended

While this book has a very creepy aspect to it, the way Greenwood wrote Wavy and Kellen’s relationship puts you in a state you have to constantly remind yourself this isn’t your normal age gap. Wavy isn’t 18, a freshmen in college, or something like that, and Kellen some worldly guy who is the catalyst to her discovering herself as a woman. No. Because of Wavy’s life, she seemed pretty sure of who she was before she was a teenager. All she needed to finish growing up was for someone to love her, handle the things a child can’t and take some of the burdens of living off her back.

Which is why it was so hard to often remember that age gap. With all Wavy went through with her mom and dad, you don’t associate that with kids since you don’t often see kids deal with that. That is usually a teen thing. So when Wavy finds happiness, with Kellen, your mind clicks into that happy place you remember from countless YA novels in which love helps validate, bring a certain level of comfort, and create some sort of peace and routine.

But perhaps something I downplayed but is done well in this book is the eroticism. There are moments in this book where you are reading Wavy describing what she is doing to Kellen, or with him, and on top of thinking Wavy is really filthy, you are asking yourself what was going through Greenwood’s head. For, honestly, the way she writes intimacy in both the sexual and companionship sense, I feel no YA novel really captures well. Especially in terms of expressing unfiltered desires.

Though perhaps the main reason this is being labeled something to buy, and recommended, is because you can easily see everything that happens leap off the page. Greenwood is very descriptive but doesn’t seem like she is trying to bloat the book like a freshmen with their first college term paper. She gives you enough to satisfy but never tries to leave you hungry. And honestly, I can’t imagine someone not grabbing up the rights to this book for an adaptation within the next two years. Of course, the age difference will make things difficult, but I can imagine someone changing Wavy’s age to 16 or 17 and making Kellen a smidge older to work around that. Either way, get the ebook, physical book, just find some time to read this book, work your way through some of the cringey moments, and just enjoy yourself. Unless the age gap is triggering or just too much to deal with, I can’t fathom why you won’t probably rip through this book.

Collected Quote(s)

You make people interested in you by keeping secrets, not by passing them out like candy at Halloween.
“Part 5/ Chapter 1: Renee – September 1987” Page 263

[She] ate in darting little bites and without chewing enough. The same way she filled her heart. Too quickly, and with too much talking and not enough feeling.
“Part 5/ Chapter 2: Wavy – November 1988” Page 267

He approached food the same way he approached kissing: slowly, thoroughly, and with concentration.
“Part 5/ Chapter 2: Wavy – November 1988” Page 268

That was how she showed affection. When I went through some soul-crushing breakup, she made elaborate meals and desserts for me.
“Part 5/ Chapter 5: Renee – May 1990” Page 274

You can look up the word keening in the dictionary, but you don’t know what it means until you hear somebody having her heart ripped out.
“Part 5/ Chapter 12: Renee – May 1990” Page 301

No woman had ever looked at me the way she did, or touched me that way. Like she wanted me, like I was worth wanting.
“Part 5/ Chapter 14: Kellen – July 1990” Page 313

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