Everything Beautiful Is Not Ruined

Everything Beautiful Is Not Ruined

Book - 2017
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Ingrid traveled all over Europe with her opera star mother, Margot-Sophia. Life was beautiful and bright, and every day soared with music.

Ingrid is on a summertime wilderness survival trek for at-risk teens: addicts, runaways, and her. She's fighting to survive crushing humiliations, physical challenges that push her to her limits, and mind games that threaten to break her.

When the curtain fell on Margot-Sophia's singing career, they buried the past and settled into a small, painfully normal life. But Ingrid longed to let the music soar again. She wanted it so much that, for a while, nothing else mattered.

Ingrid is never going to make it through this summer if she can't figure out why she's here, what happened to Margot-Sophia, and why the music really stopped.
Publisher: Toronto : Razorbill, 2017.
Copyright Date: ©2017
ISBN: 9780670070138
Branch Call Number: YOUNG
Characteristics: 361 pages


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YA / Realistic & Contemporary

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Mar 12, 2018

It's kind of sad that not many people have heard of this book, because I think it deserves more hype that say, Turtles All The Way Down. (Now that's a controversial statement.) It kind of revived the dying respect I had for the YA genre. And I'm a very critical person, so it was no easy feat.

Ingrid, the main character, is stuck in a wilderness camp for at-risk teens, most of them criminals of some sort. Her mother forcibly sent her there, and Ingrid accepted, thinking it would be a traditional camp with wooden cabins, activities, and the like. Instead, she ends up on a three week nature hike in the great outdoors (yay!) where they will be forced to live in tents and you know, not die in the middle of nowhere.

This story is told in three different styles, all woven and intermingled into a single story. First, we have the letters from Ingrid to her mother, which she writes in a fancy journal (we are unsure whether she means to show them to her mother or not). We also have the flashbacks from her earlier life, so basically anything which happened before the wilderness camp - and of course, there is also a description of current events. I love this girl. She isn't exactly pessimistic... no, that's too strong of a word, it's the wrong word, even. I think the right term might be cynical. Her perspective on life amuses me, which is one of my favourite things about this book.

I really love how the author ties in the flashbacks with the current events for more meaning. This is really a character building journey for this character, and it helps to know where she's from, because it offers more insight into why she reacts the way she does, and also it helps us understand her future, and the reason why she's in the wilderness in the first place. I love how the author managed to make the setting important to the story without that being the story. This isn't just Ingrid's trek through the middle of nowhere. It's so much more.


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Aug 09, 2018

Tavik to Ingrid: "There's a frequency- different frequencies, that anger vibrates at. Like a clue where it comes from. You gotta[sp] learn to read the frequency" (Younge-Ullman 230).

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