The Word For Yes

Finished The Word For Yes by Claire Needell.  I received a copy from the publisher for review.

Summary (from Goodreads):

After their parents’ divorce, Jan, Erika, and Melanie have to get used to the new world order: a father who’s moved to another continent and a mother who throws herself into moving on. Jan, off at her first semester of college, has plenty to worry about, including an outspoken roommate who’s kind of “out there” and an increasingly depressed and troubled long-distance boyfriend. Her younger sisters, left at home in New York City, and dealing with all the pressures of life in high school, aren’t exactly close. Erika is serious and feels awkward and uncomfortable in crowds, though her beauty tends to attract attention. Melanie is socially savvy and just wants to go out—to concerts, to parties, wherever—with her friends. The gap between all three girls widens as each day passes.

Then, at a party full of blurred lines and blurred memories, everything changes. Starting that night, where there should be words, there is only angry, scared silence.

And in the aftermath, Jan, Erika, and Melanie will have to work hard to reconnect and help one another heal.

At once touching and raw, Claire Needell’s first novel is an honest look at the love and conflicts among sisters and friends, and how these relationships can hold us together—and tear us apart.”

Oh you guys, this book.  This is one of the most important (and also just plain good) books I’ve read.

We all know that when you drink too much, you can’t give consent.  We all know that, right? But we probably don’t really think about it too much.  This book makes you think about it.

It’s just really good.  And I feel like we never really talk about that element of rape, the way that it still counts as rape if the woman you’re sleeping with is too drunk to know what she’s doing.  (And there’s no gray area here; it’s obvious that she’s not at all aware of what’s going on.)

I’m excited to read whatever Claire Needell does next.  Highly recommended.



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