I love a good quick little verse-type book and that was exactly what this book was! Like many books written this way, it dealt with some more serious topics.

Hello everyone!

I am back with another book review, What I Leave Behind by Alison McGhee. Thanks so much to Simon and Schuster Canada for sending me an ARC of this book for an honest review. As always, all opinions are my own.

*Trigger Warning: Suicide/death, sexual assault/rape*

This story is more like a short story that follows Will, a teen who is working at the local dollar store. He is experiencing the grief of his father's death a few years earlier as well as the guilt in the aftermath of his friend's rape at a party he attended. Will walks through the night, taking in the world around him and dealing with these experiences.

Writing-style wise, this book is kind of a hybrid between a verse novel and a short story. The book consists of 100 'chapters' all 100 words each. It's around 200 pages long, but the text is only printed on one side of the page (making it about 100 pages, technically) and only takes up about half of the page. The style is still in prose, not verse, but each page is short and connected to the next. I found it a quick read, even though it was dealing with some serious topics.

Despite the fact that this book was so short, I really felt like I could visualize exactly what was happening in the story. It's not so much that there are lengthy descriptions but more that the story lends itself to a visual image in your mind - you can see Will working in the store buying toys for kids, you can see him trying to perfect his father's cornbread recipe.

I will agree that there isn't a lot happening in terms of plot or character development but there was just something about the storyline that struck a chord with me and makes me think that it will stick with me for a while. The story is almost too short - I wanted more of the characters and of the story - but what I did get was really well done.

Overall, I definitely think this book is worth the read and can't wait to read more from this author.