By Colleen Hoover
Summary: Not every mistake deserves a consequence. Sometimes the only thing it deserves is forgiveness.
The Voss family is anything but normal. They live in a repurposed church, newly baptized Dollar Voss. The once cancer-stricken mother lives in the basement, the father is married to the mother’s former nurse, the little half-brother isn’t allowed to do or eat anything fun, and the eldest siblings are irritatingly perfect. Then, there’s Merit.
Merit Voss collects trophies she hasn’t earned and secrets her family forces her to keep. While browsing the local antiques shop for her next trophy, she finds Sagan. His wit and unapologetic idealism disarm and spark renewed life into her—until she discovers that he’s completely unavailable. Merit retreats deeper into herself, watching her family from the sidelines when she learns a secret that no trophy in the world can fix.
Fed up with the lies, Merit decides to shatter the happy family illusion that she’s never been a part of before leaving them behind for good. When her escape plan fails, Merit is forced to deal with the staggering consequences of telling the truth and losing the one boy she loves.
Source: I purchased a kindle copy.
Without Merit was fantastic.
I feel like I’ve seen a shift in Hoover’s books lately as they’ve dialed in on some issues and were more about those issues and less about the romance and I think I like it.
There was a ton of angst in the book and the main character, Merit, had her share of issues with her family as well as issues figuring out where she fit into the world. The book dealt with a lot of mental health issues, identity, family, and communicating with people you love. It was about growth and love, too.
I don’t think Merit was the most likable main character, but I also think that was kind of the point to some degree, so I forgave the story for that.