Review: Can’t Look Away

Can't Look Away

 

Don’t go gentle into this book. I’m here to tell you this is not an emotional tear jerker, this is the same story that has been done hundreds of times before, only this time with new fluffier words.

Short recap: Torrey, a popular fashion vlogger that is mourning the death of her sister. Torrey’s family moves to another state in hopes of a fresh start and a chance for healing.

There, that seemed simple enough to say and it didn’t invoke the horrible feelings I felt towards this story. Torrey’s character is not the protagonist I felt any sympathy for. My heart did not go out towards her nor did I feel anything towards her. Why? She was more worried about her social status and the perception her sister’s accident would have towards her vlogger count. I cannot make this up. Video is leaked (and even Torrey admits it) of how she got into a fight with her sister, who then stomped off. That started the chain reaction: a drunk driver plowed through the crosswalk her sister was in the middle of, killing her instantly. Torrey is essentially a shallow, self involved  brat who cannot think of anyone but herself. When she is moved to another state to start school, she keeps wondering if someone will recognize her from her videos. WHO CARES. Your temper tantrum caused your sister to leave and be in the way of the car! How could you possibly care if you would be recognized?! Throughout the entire story, there were just so many things Torrey said or thought that made me believe she was only upset so much simply because of what people were saying about her. Absolutely nothing to do with her sister’s death! Not for one single moment did I believe that Torrey was ever sorry for her sister’s death. I think she acted upset and in mourning because she was caught on video acting like the bitch she was.

No need for me to remind you, yet again, that Torrey was all about perception and popularity. That being said, she seemed to overlook the Mean Girls attitude in her new school just so she could move up the social chain. She wants the attention, wealth, status, and adoring fans and it is clear she doesn’t care how she got it. All of these qualities and then some made me dislike the character even more. Now, you may be saying to yourself, “Sounds like the this character is written as someone I’d love to hate! What’s the problem?” The problem is that you are not supposed to hate Torrey, you are supposed to feel bad for her losing a sister, what she and her family are going through, and the fact she has to start over at a new school. Yeah… I felt none of those things. Not one single drop.

There is a bit of a love interest in this story but it wasn’t really that great. Torrey used poor Luis (the hottie) and threw him away. They were not good as a couple. He completely supported her yet she didn’t give two flips about him. (See a pattern going on with her? Thought so.) The rest of the girl squad was just as bad and I chose not to remember them. I can’t even tell you their names. I can say there was nothing unique or memorable about any of them. They all played their part and that was that.

So why didn’t I DNF this book? Such a good question. I kept holding out that small speck of hope that Torrey would grow just a little, or develop enough to own up to her faults. Did she? NOT ONE BIT. She talked a lot about wanting to make a victim statement at the drunk driver’s sentencing but she never did. She chickened out at the last minute and her mom stepped in. And her mom did a pitiful job of giving a statement. This was supposed to be the time the victim’s family was to speak openly to the driver to let him know exactly what they were going through but it fell short of what should have been said because Torrey’s mom was just too fragile to do something like that. Yet again, Torrey let everyone down.

Overall, no – I did not like this story. There was a lot of potential here but it was not developed or delivered properly. The ending was left open for whatever reason. So many unanswered questions! What happens to Torrey and her family? Will she ever move back to her home state? Personally, I didn’t care what happened to Torrey. She was a nasty character and a horrible person so she could have stayed right where she was, I didn’t care (and I still don’t care). Why she was obsessed with her vlog status and popularity over her family is beyond me. I would not recommend this to anyone because I didn’t see the silver lining at all. I wanted more but never got it.

 

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