PTSD, loss of limb, anxiety
Title: The Opposite of Falling Apart
Author: Micah Good
Genre: YA Contemporary
Publication Date: February 25th
After losing his leg in a terrible car accident, Jonas Avery can’t wait to start over and go to college. Brennan Davis would like nothing more than to stay home and go to school, so she can keep her anxiety in check. When the two accidentally meet the summer before they move away, they’ll push each other to come to terms with what’s holding them back, even as they’re pulled closer to taking the biggest leap of all—falling in love. The Opposite of Falling Apart has more than 2.1 million reads on Wattpad.
Jonas and Brennan meet a month before their first semester of college, each dealing with intense issues. Jonas is experiencing PTSD from a car accident that left him missing a leg and Brennan is trying to learn how to cope with her crippling anxiety.
This was a really realistic portrayal of anxiety, introversion—that kind of fatigued feeling you get from social interaction, and PTSD. I related so much to what these characters were feeling, especially Brennan. Her feelings once she gets to college hit me right in the gut. I had the same thoughts during my first year of college—you’re so nervous about making a good impression, not to look stupid in front of roommates, floormates, or teachers.
Although I really did relate to Brennan, there were times when I just wanted to scream at her for not helping herself more. Her anxiety was so debilitating that even though she had access to medication and therapy, she couldn’t bring herself to accept the help. Jonas had a greater character development arc and really came into his own by the end of the book.
This book was very mental, meaning the characters were constantly in their own heads so much that at times it was frustrating. I wanted more action, though I understood why there was more introspection. I also felt that the story was very repetitive. There could have been a good chunk of scenes removed because they were just redundant. This was definitely a debut novel; you could tell from the immaturity in the writing.
ARC was provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.