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Friday, May 6, 2016

Ask Me How I Got Here
by Christine Heppermann

Release Date: May 3, 2016
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Age Group: Young Adult
Source: Publisher
Pages: 240
Buy: Amazon / Barnes & Noble /
IndieBound / Book Depository
Description: Goodreads
Addie has always known what she was running toward. In cross-country, in life, in love. Until she and her boyfriend—her sensitive, good-guy boyfriend—are careless one night and she ends up pregnant. Addie makes the difficult choice to have an abortion. And after that—even though she knows it was the right decision for her—nothing is the same anymore. She doesn’t want anyone besides her parents and her boyfriend to know what happened; she doesn’t want to run cross-country; she can’t bring herself to be excited about anything. Until she reconnects with Juliana, a former teammate who’s going through her own dark places. 

Once again, Christine Heppermann writes with an unflinching honesty and a deep sensitivity about the complexities of being a teenager, being a woman. Her free-verse poems are moving, provocative, and often full of wry humor and a sharp wit. Like Laurie Halse Anderson and Ellen Hopkins, Christine Heppermann is a voice to turn to for the truth of difficult subjects. Ask Me How I Got Here is a literary exploration of sexuality, religion, and self-discovery.
Told in beautiful yet sparing verse, Ask Me How I Got Here is the story of a teenage girl with a seemingly idyllic life and a bright future laid out in front of her, who's life is drastically changed with a single choice. 

Addie -- with her caring, compassionate boyfriend, her understanding parents and a shot at a cross-country scholarship to college -- has her life suddenly thrown off kilter when she winds up pregnant. She makes the difficult decision to end the pregnancy in hopes of keeping her life on track, but too much changes in the aftermath and she loses her momentum. 

This slim volume wasn't originally on my radar, but, when it came in the mail, something told me to read a few pages. Then I read a few more, and soon enough I was invested. Forty-five minutes later I turned the last page and found myself immensely satisfied with this story about losing your way and finding a way back.

Christine Heppermann's powerful poetry coupled with her irreverent humor makes for a poignant yet approachable novel about a challenging and often controversial topic. A quick read that rings true of real people coping with real emotional issues in the wake of a life-altering event, Ask Me How I Got Here proves the impact of a book has nothing to do with the number of words between its covers.

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