Book Review: What We Saw by Aaron Hartzler

Posted January 22, 2016 by love2dazzle in Reviews, Young Adult / 0 Comments

This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
Book Review: What We Saw by Aaron HartzlerWhat We Saw by Aaron Hartzler
Published by HarperCollins on September 22nd 2015
Genres: Dating & Sex, Drugs, Alcohol, Substance Abuse, Peer Pressure, Social Issues, Young Adult
Pages: 336
Format: Hardcover
Source: My Own
Buy on Amazon

Critically acclaimed memoirist Aaron Hartzler, author of Rapture Practice, takes an unflinching look at what happens to a small town when some of its residents commit a terrible crime. This honest, authentic debut novel—inspired by the events in the Steubenville rape case—will resonate with readers who've ever walked that razor-thin line between guilt and innocence that so often gets blurred, one hundred and forty characters at a time.The party at John Doone's last Saturday night is a bit of a blur. Kate Weston can piece together most of the details: Stacey Stallard handing her shots, Ben Cody taking her keys and getting her home early. . . . But when a picture of Stacey passed out over Deacon Mills's shoulder appears online the next morning, Kate suspects she doesn't have all the details. When Stacey levels charges against four of Kate's classmates, the whole town erupts into controversy. Facts that can't be ignored begin to surface, and every answer Kate finds leads back to the same questions: Who witnessed what happened to Stacey? And what responsibility do they have to speak up about what they saw?National Book Award finalist Deb Caletti calls What We Saw

“What We Saw” by Aaron Hartzler is a book that makes your stomach cringe because of the way teenagers treat each other. I can’t imagine why people think the things they do are okay. I don’t get it at all. “What We Saw” is the journey of Kate Weston and her determination to discover the truth. Kate wakes up from a massive hangover and she doesn’t remember coming home. Ben, Kate’s very long time best friend, makes sure that she gets home safely.

First thing Kate does is check in with her friends and of course see the picture of herself drunk. She requests that the pictures get deleted. When there are rumors at school about a girl who got too wasted. Kate things it is her until she finds out that people are really talking about Stacey.

When the cops come in and arrest the major sport stars for rape. The entire school takes the side of the jocks. Kate decides to find out what the  truth was about that night. At first Kate played off as a naive and uninteresting character. As the story went on I feel like Kate gained a bit more of herself as the book went on. By the end she had found her voice. Kate definitely grew on me as the story went on. I was really disappointed in how willingly the other characters would jump on the bandwagon on bashing the poor girl when they didn’t know the whole story. It is really saw to see people do this.

“What We Saw” is a very well written novel. It is also a very disturbing story about teens and parents. I think everyone so take a good look at this book because this is not how people should be treated. I would encourage others to stand up rather than to follow the crowd.


About love2dazzle

Ali Kiki is a reader, writer, reviewer, blogger, and photographer in Portland, OR. An avid reader since childhood, you can usually find her devouring a book or stalking the bookstagram hashtag in her lovely apartment surrounded by books. Ali has been blogging since 2006 and she created Dazzled by Books in 2012. Her most recent adventure is making bookish candles for Stub Tail Candle Co., which are sold on Etsy.

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