Wednesday 15 April 2015

{Blog Tour} The Truth about Us by Janet Gurtler

21991195Posted by Donna
Release Date: April 7th, 2015
Finished Date: 
Publishers: Sourcebooks Fire
Genre: YA, Contemporary, Romance
Source: For Review
Format: eARC
Pages: 304
A powerful and gripping contemporary YA from the author of I'm Not Her that's "Just right for fans of Sarah Dessen and Jodi Picoult."-Booklist

The truth is that Jess knows she screwed up.
She's made mistakes, betrayed her best friend, and now she's paying for it. Her dad is making her spend the whole summer volunteering at the local soup kitchen.

The truth is she wishes she was the care-free party-girl everyone thinks she is.
She pretends it's all fine. That her "perfect" family is fine. But it's not. And no one notices the lie...until she meets Flynn. He's the only one who really sees her. The only one who listens.

The truth is that Jess is falling apart – and no one seems to care. 
But Flynn is the definition of "the wrong side of the tracks." When Jess's parents look at him they only see the differences-not how much they need each other. They don't get that the person who shouldn't fit in your world... might just be the one to make you feel like you belong.

The Review: The Truth above Us is a story about Jess whose life seems to be crashing around her. Her mother stays in her room all day, her father is a controlling workaholic and her older sister spends more time at her boyfriend’s house than at home. The only person Jess has to rely on is her best friend who really isn’t that great of a friend. But now, after making too many mistakes, Jess’s father is making her volunteer in a soup kitchen and it is there that she means Flynn – the boy from the wrong side of town. As Jess and Flynn start a relationship, it seems there is more than one person who doesn’t want them together. So can they beat the odds? 

I’ve really enjoyed Janet Gurtler’s books so far. My favourite being Who I Kissed and so I’m always waiting impatiently for a new release from her. I enjoyed The Truth about Us but it wasn’t a favourite. The reason for that is because I’ve read a lot of these types of stories – ones about girls dating guys from the wrong side of the tracks. And while I enjoyed this one, it didn’t really stand out compared to the other stories I’ve read. I’m not saying this is a bad story because it’s not. It’s a quick and easy read, one that’s enjoyable but it’s one that didn’t wow but as much as I hoped because I didn’t find it very memorable. 

Jess was a likable character. Even though she had her moments to start with as the story progresses she becomes more open and honest with herself and starts to really grow. The troubles she faces at home are troubling and I really felt for situation and could understand the reasons for why she acted out. But then I liked it when Jess started working at the soup kitchen because it’s there she changes. I really liked that the author added the issues because she’s famous for writing about real life issues. 

The romance of the story is a very strong aspect of the story and I didn’t really connect with it as much as I would have liked. The characters relationship develops too quickly, almost an insta-love connection and it just all felt too rushed. 

In all, while I enjoyed The Truth about Us it isn’t a favourite of mine but if you’re looking for an easy read that easy to fly through, then you’re in the right place. 

Thank you to Sourcebooks Fire for giving me the opportunity to review this book in exchange for an honest review. 

Why it's important to tell the truth:
by Janet Gurtler

I believe in telling the truth. That’s not to say I’ve never lied to anyone, or never told a few white lies in my time.  I have however been accused of being the kind of person who “tells it like it is.” This is accurate to some degree, though I don’t go out of my way to say mean things or point out mean things about other people. Yes, your haircut looks great, no those pants don’t make your butt look big. I’d never have to be totally honest to hurt someone’s feelings.

I’m attracted to friends who are sarcastic and funny and direct.  It’s a quality I admire in other people and I think it stems from the fact that I’m a fan of telling the truth to yourself. I’m not the kind of person who likes pretending that everything is perfect when everything is not.  I don’t want to be the negative nelly all the time either, but I’m not faking things so that the surface looks shiny.

I hate sweeping things under the carpet. I’d rather talk about things. Real things. I don’t like pretenses. I don’t like beating around the bush. I don’t like it when people tell others something only because they think that’s what they think that person wants to hear. I’m not good at those kind of games and it irritates me when others play them.

I actually had a talk with my son recently about this exact topic. He struggles with a friend who is always boasting, making things up and outright lying. We talked about different family values. How maybe this friend has other good qualities, but might not turn out to be the kind of person my son wants to associate with long term.  I told him my view on honesty and how that filters to him and we talked about how different family’s value different things and it doesn’t necessarily make us right, but it shapes our behavior and what we value in others.

I think my attitude about truth telling comes out a lot in my writing. I am a big fan of giving my characters secrets and making them face those secrets one way or another. In The Truth About Us, most of the characters in the book have to look inward and face truths about themselves. Sometimes the truth isn’t pretty. None of us are perfect. I think in real life the key is to figure out how to make your own truth something you can live with.

A Rita Award Finalist and Crystal Kite Award Finalist, Janet Gurtler's young adult books have been chosen for the JUNIOR LIBRARY GUILD SELECTION and as BEST BOOKS FOR TEENS from the Canadian Children’s Book Center. Janet lives in Okotoks Alberta, Canada with her husband, son, and a chubby black Chihuahua named Bruce.

TWITTER: @janetgurtler


Megan McDade said...

I have this one on my TRL I like a good girl falls for guy from the wrong side of the tracks books. I hope to get to this soon. I am also going to.check out the other book you mentioned by the author.

Megan @

Karielle @ Books à la Mode said...

Lovely review, Donna! I felt the same way about the insta-romance but also agree that this was still a quick, easy read.

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