“If we don’t reach for things, think of how much we’ll miss” ~The F*** It List
The F*** It List by Julie Halpern: 4/5 stars
Alex and Becca have always been best friends. But when Becca does something nearly unforgivable at Alex’s dad’s funeral, Alex cuts ties with her and focuses on her grieving family.
Time passes, and Alex finally decides to forgive Becca. Then she’s hit with another shocker: Becca has cancer. It also turns out Becca has a bucket list, one she doesn’t know she’ll be able to finish now. That’s where Alex comes in, along with a mysterious and guarded boy who just may help Alex check a few items off her own bucket list.
Julie Halpern writes about illness, loss, love, and friendship with candor and compassion. Here is an unforgettable book about living fully, living authentically, and just . . . living.
*May contain some spoilers*
I really loved this book and would definitely read the rest of Julie Halpern’s novels, but the reason I gave this book four stars was simply because I thought the ending was a little too vague and simple. I saw the ending coming, but that didn’t bother me one bit. Halpern has an amazing writing style and even though I predicted the ending I still loved reading it.
This book was very different than what I typically read and I’m very glad I picked it up. I didn’t even read the synopsis before I bought it. It looked like a cool book and I’ve heard some good things about it so I went ahead and grabbed it along with many other books!
So right off the bat you learn that Becca, who’s supposed to be Alex’s best friend, sleeps with Alex’s boyfriend. Not only does she sleep with her boyfriend she also does it on the day of Alex’s Dad’s funeral. However, when Alex get’s to school after a summer of ignoring her best friend, she comes to find out Becca has cancer. I really liked this aspect, because it helps add even more drama too the novel. I love drama but not in my life, so that’s why I read about it haha.
I also instantly fell in love with the character that is Alex. She is funny and silly and takes you through this story of love, heartbreak, stress, and so much more. She’s your typical teenager with a few of her own quirks, which make her who she is. Plus she says funny things like, “That’ll do, Donkey” and “As cool as she’s being she’s not entirely one with the cucumber.” That’s one of my favorite quotes.
I also loved the friendship Becca and Alex shared, because despite all the stuff they’ve been through they continued to be friends. However, you see them drift apart a little when Alex meets Leo. She’s still Becca’s friend but now she has little bit of distraction.
This leads me to my next thing, Alex and Leo’s relationship! I liked the fact that they didn’t have a perfect relationship and they often found themselves questioning what they really are. I feel like too many times the girl meets the guy and they fall madly in love and live happily ever after. However, Leo was the first to say, “I love you” to Alex and she panicked at that. It’s not very often that you see the girl panic at the words “I love you,” usually it’s the other way around. Alex was a mess when it came to love and I found it unique, because it seemed more realistic than most high school based contemporaries.
Alex was a very strong character and didn’t like to let people in or break down and let it all out, so when she finally did I found it very amazing. She was struggling with so much and used Leo to forget about it and ended up breaking his heart, so it wasn’t expected when she decided she had to fix things because she really did love him. She felt so many different emotions because of everything going on and it really made you connect to her and feel those emotions as well. It just seemed to put her relationship into a different perspective, because you get to see how much she really does care even though it didn’t seem like it at first.
Overall I really loved this novel along with all the characters. I also loved seeing all the characters change and develop. Sadly, I wish the list was involved a little more towards the end, because I felt like the list was involved frequently in the beginning but slowly became forgotten. I also thought the ending could’ve been a little better because I found it really simple.
I would definitely recommend this novel, because it’s very well written and takes you through an amazing story. I would definitely read this book again it was just different than most contemporaries I read and have read.
I hoped y’all enjoyed this review! I really loved reading this book and writing this review! Make sure you check out some of my other posts while you’re at it!