My rating: 5 of 5 stars
OK, so I finished this book about 10 days ago and it’s taken me until now to try and find the right words to express just how much I loved this book.
I am a huuge fan of Steph Campbell, so I was expecting good things from Delicate anyway but I was blown away by just how good it was and how well it dealt with the issues it tackled.
Sydney is a character from another of Steph’s books, Grounding Quinn, and in Delicate we get to know more about her not-so-great past that’s briefly mentioned in that book.
Sydney is an exceptionally talented gymnast who’s training plan for Nationals has her practising twice a day, 6 days a week. She’s always worn out with balancing training and schoolwork, and is constantly trying to make other people happy. Her dad is still devastated by the death of her mum not so long ago and her younger sister doesn’t speak to her. Add a possessive boyfriend in to the pot and we have a mixed-up Sydney.
Then along comes new student, Grant. Sydney immediately feels a spark with him and he feels the same about her. The only problem is Trevor, Sydney’s controlling, hot-headed boyfriend. He is NOT happy about Sydney’s friendship with Grant and that’s where things start going drastically wrong in Sydney’s life as Trevor begins to control, manipulate and physically abuse her.
Where do I start with this?
Well, first off, my heart broke for Sydney and what she had to endure at the hands of Trevor. So many people have a story to tell, either their own or about someone they know, about physical abuse in a relationship and I think knowing that it’s unfortunately so common is what makes it so hard to read about. Seeing it written down made me think of the person I know and imagine how she suffered.
I loved Sydney. She was a sweet, caring girl who always tried to make other people happy, even at her own expense. She was just a normal girl who happened to have a lot going on in her life. She always looked for the good in people, and I think that’s how she ended up letting things go on for as long as they did.
I loved Grant and his unconditional friendship with Sydney. He was always there for her, offering advice but never pushing her in to anything. As much as he hated knowing what he knew he let Sydney come to her own realisation of when enough was enough so that it would be more likely that she wouldn’t go back on that decision. He knew no one could force her in to making that decision before she was ready.
I HATED Trevor, but that was the point wasn’t it. He was just an awful, awful character. I can’t really think of anything else to say about him!
Delicate was well written, had a cast of great characters, and had me chewing on my thumbnail most of the way through, not good when you’re trying to grow your nails!
I have REALLY struggled to write this review. I sometimes love a book so much that I end up sounding like a babbling idiot when it comes to reviewing it. This is one of those times!
All you need to know is that Delicate is a must read book. It’s not easy going and will most likely make you cry but life is not always hearts and flowers, just as Sydney learned, and neither are books.
Oh, and I think the statistics and helpline number that Steph included at the end of the book were a brilliant idea. Like the saying goes, if just one person benefits from that info then that’s one person out of the horrendous situation so many young people can find themselves in.