June 9, 2014

Thousand Words by Jennifer Brown

Thousand Words
Thousand Words by Jennifer Brown
Series: N/A
Source: Bought
Publisher: Little, Brown
Publication Date: May 21, 2013
Ashleigh's boyfriend, Kaleb, is about to leave for college, and Ashleigh is worried that he'll forget about her while he's away. So at a legendary end-of-summer pool party, Ashleigh's friends suggest she text him a picture of herself -- sans swimsuit -- to take with him. Before she can talk herself out of it, Ashleigh strides off to the bathroom, snaps a photo in the full-length mirror, and hits "send."

But when Kaleb and Ashleigh go through a bad breakup, Kaleb takes revenge by forwarding the text to his baseball team. Soon the photo has gone viral, attracting the attention of the school board, the local police, and the media. As her friends and family try to distance themselves from the scandal, Ashleigh feels completely alone -- until she meets Mack while serving her court-ordered community service. Not only does Mack offer a fresh chance at friendship, but he's the one person in town who received the text of Ashleigh's photo -- and didn't look.

Acclaimed author Jennifer Brown brings readers a gripping novel about honesty and betrayal, redemption and friendship, attraction and integrity, as Ashleigh finds that while a picture may be worth a thousand words . . . it doesn't always tell the whole story.

Thousand Words is one of those books that I think every teenage girl should read. Because as a teenager myself, I've never really thought about the implications of sexting (it's not really my thing), but reading this book was a huge thing. I never could have imagined how something so simple could spiral out of control! I mean, her boyfriend (she thought) was the only one who was ever going to see it. And then everyone saw it. It was viral on the internet, and people she's never even met have seen her naked.

How embarrassing is that? In Ashleigh's situation, I would truly be freaking out. And you've got to give Ashleigh points for how she handles it - she does her best to ignore it all, even when it's hurtful. So many nasty things get said to her, and she just keeps on trucking. She does her best to move on with her life, which is really the best thing that she can possibly do in her situation. Ashleigh projects her feelings very well as a character, and it was really easy for me to put myself in her shoes. I'm glad they didn't fit.

I honestly thought that Thousand Words was very realistic - I can imagine this all happening, and that's the scary part! Everything was very well thought out and written, in my opinion.

I will say that I looked forward to the community service chapters more than the flashbacks, though. I liked seeing how she was doing now, as opposed to then. At least she was on her way to happy in the present, whereas in the past she was very, very sad. And I don't blame her. But those chapters had such a feeling of hope being snuffed out - I just couldn't take it.

All in all, teen girls everywhere should read Thousand Words. I would never have imagined how one single act would follow someone forever.

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