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All the Ugly and Wonderful Things

Greenwood, Bryn

  30 Reviews

All the ugly and wonderful things indeed ... young Wavy and her brother Donal are at the mercy of their meth-addicted parents, but for the care and support of an unlikely knight in shining armour. Kellen, one of their father's drug runners is a damaged man who does his best for the children. But the bond that develops over time between he and Wavy is complicated by their significant age difference and the boundaries they breach.

This is a graphic coming-of-age story as compelling as it is disturbing in its visceral portrayal of love and resilience in the gritty reality of rural America.

Pages
406
Year
2016

Reviews

CHCH 501
23-09-2022
Confronting, raw, and well enjoyed by our group.
CHCH 523
03-09-2022
This book created quite a lot of discussion! Especially around the issue of sexual consent and age. The read was engrossing, characters well developed and they had a very different 'life' to those of us reading.
NAP 005
17-08-2022
A challenging and, in parts, uncomfortable read when measured against the "norms" of our middle class society. A long and excellent discussion.
PIOPIO 001
28-07-2022
Highly rated by our group and a real 'page turner'. Challenging at times because of the darker side, but also in that it challenged our social biases. Beautifully crafted characters. Excellent discussion.
CLARK 001
11-05-2022
All group members rated this book as one of their best reads. Engaging page turner. For some, it challenged them, and called for a re think on judgements!
AUCK 218
07-01-2022
We all finished this book and really, really rated it. The best book of 2021 for us. Very triggering for some. We savoured it and didn't want it to end.
TAUR 060
19-11-2021
Our whole group was hooked on this book right from the start. The characters were all very engaging, and had nuances that stopped them from being good or bad, and just people shaped by their past. We enjoyed discussing the "proper" relationship line so blurred by the characters in the book. One of our best reads this year.
MILT 003
15-11-2021
Really good read - 6 members read this story within the first week. Couldn't put it down, a real page turner. Very descriptive. Not everything is as it seems in this world.
CHCH 503
01-11-2021
A very powerful and thought provoking book, written well. We didn't "enjoy" the questions - so our group had an "open" discussion on various topics that the book delivered.
TAUR 061
26-08-2021
Despite challenging the moral compass this book was compelling in all ways. Once again we were reminded that we all need to be loved and give love.
CHCH 518
25-08-2021
Well-written, but the final chapter brought the book to an abrupt end. Well drawn characters and a good storyline, albeit very controversial.
AUCK 276
23-08-2021
We all enjoyed the book. Challenged our emotions. Good discussions.
CHCH 510
28-06-2021
A book that generated a lot of discussion for our group! Great for differing perspectives and made for a very interesting split!
QUEEN 014
25-06-2021
Most of us didn't finish. Very dark theme. A few liked the writing style, but overall not a winner.
ASHB 027
11-06-2021
Great book and discussion. Not always a pleasant read; challenging in it's characterisations and plot. Highly recommend.
AUCK 285
13-05-2021
A must read book. The majority read it, and thought this book was fantastic. It deals with under age sex, and so we felt it made you feel uncomfortable and almost squeamish for them, but also loving the story and the characters. A shocking eye opener to a world we can barely understand - we wondered how much was autobiographical, and therefore how good the author's future books would e. It made us question relationships and what the law deems 'wrong', when in this case the 'wrong' relationship saved two vulnerable people, and ultimately withstood all the prejudice. Brilliant read.
CHCH 322
24-03-2021
We had a very good discussion, but we found (especially our clinical psychologist member) the book very disturbing, because of the way Kellen groomed Wavy. We felt that the catalogue description maybe needs to discuss what sexual grooming is, and how this was portrayed and seemingly accepted in this book, as it is more in line with the perpetrator's version of events rather than that of the victim's.
WANG 015
03-02-2021
We all loved this book! Made for really interesting discussion as so many conflicting emotions felt about the characters' stories.
CHCH 426
27-01-2021
We absolutely LOVED this book. It was a compelling read.
CAMB 007
28-09-2020
We all really enjoyed this one. Great book, great characters. We liked the strength of Wavy. How quick people were to judge Kellen.
DUNED 109
13-07-2020
Most of the group enjoyed this book - the writer elegantly depicted a sensitive topic. Some found it really disturbing but others were able to get past that.
CHCH 333
09-07-2020
All the group enjoyed this book. Lots of discussion on all the problems that arose.
NELS 015
03-07-2020
A very polarising book. About half the group found it very challenging and disturbing, others were quite comfortable with the content. However, we all enjoyed it - very well written with believable characters, and all the more real as the author was writing from experience.
TEPUK 006
08-05-2020
I loved this book! It challenged me on so many levels. I cried, got angry, was shocked and finally hopeful.
MOTUE 004
29-01-2020
Compelling. Disturbing but super endearing also. Very thought provoking and generated good discussion. Definitely recommended.
PUKEKO 001
29-01-2020
A controversial subject which provoked somewhat surprisingly little controversy in our group as we almost unanimously loved it. Overall, we found it beautifully written, sensitive, believable and un-putdownable, despite confrontational and taboo subjects. There was some concern over the narrative structure/multiple P.O.V narration but it didn't detract overly from the story.
NELS 072
29-01-2020
Couldn't put book down, interesting read. Found it hard and morally wrong, but made you think outside the box and gave great perspectives.
AUCK 069
27-01-2020
An amazing book - overwhelmingly high scores. Very difficult content, but very well-written and believable.
INVER 004
27-01-2020
Great book. We questioned the values!
WAIUK 005
23-10-2019
Very thought provoking, something we will continue to think about. New insights especially into children's rights. We felt sympathetic to most characters. Extremely valuable insights into lives we would not normally encounter.