But one week after Lizzie kills herself, SUICIDE SLUT replaces it—in Lizzie’s looping scrawl.
Lizzie’s reputation is destroyed when she’s caught in bed with her best friend’s boyfriend on prom night. With the whole school turned against her, and Angie not speaking to her, Lizzie takes her own life. But someone isn’t letting her go quietly. As graffiti and photocopies of Lizzie’s diary plaster the school, Angie begins a relentless investigation into who, exactly, made Lizzie feel she didn’t deserve to keep living. And while she claims she simply wants to punish Lizzie’s tormentors, Angie’s own anguish over abandoning her best friend will drive her deep into the dark, twisted side of Verity High—and she might not be able to pull herself back out.
Debut author Chelsea Pitcher daringly depicts the harsh reality of modern high schools, where one bad decision can ruin a reputation, and one cruel word can ruin a life. Angie’s quest for the truth behind Lizzie’s suicide is addictive and thrilling, and her razor-sharp wit and fierce sleuthing skills makes her impossible not to root for—even when it becomes clear that both avenging Lizzie and avoiding self-destruction might not be possible.
I was reluctant to start reading The S-Word when the reviews started coming in, a lot of them were quite negative and I really didn’t want to have to push myself through another “meh” read. When I started, it was a struggle for about the first 45% of the book and I was just about to DNF when the story picked up quite a bit.
I want come right out and say I could not stand the main character, Angie. I think that was probably the main reason why I had a hard time reading at first. I know she was supposed to be struggling with all of this guilt from Lizzie’s suicide but I just thought she was trying to justify her own actions. I did start to dislike her less by the end of the book but I still didn’t care about her. At all. Lizzie though, on the other hand, I adored. Even though she is not alive during the course of the book she touched me through her diary entries and her silent struggle with just life in general. I also really adored Jesse. I enjoyed his soft personality and found him interesting and unique.
I found it extremely difficult to rate this book upon finishing it. I can see where the author is going with the message but their were parts that just made me so angry or so sad that I didn’t know whether I liked it or hated it. I also had the same situation with Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver, and ironically gave it the same rating. There is something with books about bullying that make me want to throw things and they make me sick to my stomach. I do like the stories but because they make me so heartbroken I can’t fully love them.
I thought what was done to Lizzie was disgusting. I found the fact that her “best friend” didn’t even care to listen to her side of the story was awful and thus ended with her hearing her side in a diary entry when she was already gone. It was just so, so sad to read Lizzie’s thoughts and feelings and it actually tore my heart out. Like I mentioned above, I thought Angie was trying to find excuses to remove her part in Lizzie’s anguish. Don’t get me wrong, I know she was hurting but I just couldn’t understand that if your best friend was this person you said was an angel, who did nothing wrong in life wouldn’t you think you should talk to her before turning her away? Ah… I just get angry thinking about it.
There were quite a few twists in this story, some will probably shock most of the readers which really keeps you hanging on at the end. Lizzie’s story is not as cut and dry as you would think, and it’s actually exceptionally tragic when you think that it all may have been prevented. With the twists it really upped the ante of the plot and kept me interested to the very end of the book. I did find the writing a little jumpy at times but once you get a bit further into the story you get used to Pitcher’s writing style.
I would recommend this book however it’s not for the weak hearted. It’s gut wrenching sad, deals with bullying, suicide and has characters, that although probably are a somewhat real depiction of what some teens are like, will make you want to slap. The story is very tragic and once you get past the character flaws will really pull you in.