Only Ever Yours - Louise O'Neill

This book drew me in and had me thinking about it until I finished it, though I definitely want to pull out my hair after the ending.

 

Despite being a totally dystopian world that is (hopefully) very far from our own, it was so easy to fall into this world and to truly envision it and imagine how it might be. Though there were many really unusual concepts, O'Neill weaved each beautifully in so that as a reader I understood the world she created without needing to have each concept explained. My only concern with this book was the plausibility of how this world was created, as the plausibility of life being set up as was a little hard to accept. However, I suspended my disbelief and had no other issues.

 

This book was incredibly thorough on details. Small stylistic choices such as not capitalising the names of females, calling eggs 'eggies,' and calling girls 'eves' like Eve, the biblical character, really placed me in this world she's created. I'm definitely going to have to reread this one because there were a lot of well placed hints and cues that I only noticed thinking back on the book. This book is an incredible example of world building.

The characters were artfully designed in a manner that felt scarily like real-life. Though the girls in this society are created and raised differently than those in ours, I could see similarities and patterns. O'Neill writes very strongly and Freida's voice was very natural and flowing. Discerning her mental state was simple thanks to the writing.

 

This also includes great social commentary on sexism, and, more subtly interwoven, racism. It does have a lot of similarities to "The Handmaid's Tale" but it has its own entirely new spin that sets it far apart.

 

I am satisfied with the ending, also. Perhaps displeased, but respectfully satisfied and impressed.

 

It'll leave you thinking and wondering about the mediocrity of simple life and the lack of importance every day might bring against the importance simple decisions hold. I know I'll be mulling this one for a while.

 

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.