Title: Love You Hate You Miss You
Author: Elizabeth Scott
Release Date: May 26, 2009
Source: Personal Copy
Rating: 4.75 out of 5
Amy’s life had never been perfect, but it was pretty good. Sure, her parents were too into one another to really pay attention to her and she felt tall and awkward all the time – but she had Julia. Julia was her best friend, closer than a sister, who made her life bearable. Along with the alcohol and sex with random boys, Julia helped Amy numb the pain of being who she was, of living in her own skin.
But then the unthinkable happened, and now Julia is dead and Amy is in rehab. Amy grapples with the consequences of the decisions she has made in her life and tries to understand Julia. She believes she bears responsibility for Julia’s death, and doesn’t know how to go on living with that on her conscience. As she returns to school and daily life, Amy finds comfort and understanding in the unlikeliest of places, and begins to let go of the anger and pain and confront those dark feelings that she’s held for so long.
Love You Hate You Miss You is simply an amazing read, both for teens and adults. While there is a lot of drinking and a decent amount of sex and drugs in this story, I believe the end message – that you can’t lose yourself in these things – still makes it an appropriate for older teens.
Amy was a wonderful character who was incredibly realistic. It was difficult to forget she wasn’t an actual teen living somewhere, rather than a creation within the pages of a book. For example, often in the book, Amy couldn’t figure out what she wanted. She thought she wanted attention from her parents, but when they gave it to her, she felt suffocated. This confusion wasn’t annoying; instead, it spoke to Amy’s state during Love You Hate You Miss You. She didn’t know what to do or how to live without Julia – Julia made her feel real.
I loved that Amy found solace in people she wouldn’t have given a second thought to when Julia was alive. It really showed how Julia, while definitely a good friend to Amy, was by no means perfect. She was just as complicated a person as Amy, though Amy didn’t see that until after Julia’s death. The character development in Love You Hate You Miss You is simply superb.
While Love You Hate You Miss You is a dark, troubled story, it really is full of beauty. It’s difficult to read at times, but in the end, the message is uplifting. Elizabeth Scott really shows how amazing of a writer she is in this novel – she creates wonderfully complex characters, crafts a heartbreaking storyline, and delivers the message that you can learn to live again.