Don’t Ever Change by M. Beth Bloom

Don’t Ever Change by M. Beth Bloom

Release Date: July 7, 2015
Publisher: HarperTeen
Rated: YA 14+
Format: eGalley
Source: Edelweiss
Buy: AmazonThe Book Depository
Goodreads Website

Sometimes the only way to learn about yourself is to try to change everything about you.

Eva has always wanted to write a modern classic—one that actually appeals to her generation. The only problem is that she’s starting to realize she can’t “write what she knows” because she hasn’t really lived. So the summer before heading off to college, Eva is determined to live a life worth writing about.

But soon Eva’s story starts to go in unexpected directions, like growing apart from her best friends, working at a job she is completely unqualified for, and even falling for the last person she would have ever imagined. Like anyone, though, it will be up to Eva to figure out how she wants this particular chapter in her story to end.

Perfect for fans of E. Lockhart, David Levithan, and Rainbow Rowell, Don’t Ever Change is a witty, snarky, and thought-provoking coming-of-age novel about a teen who sets out to write better fiction and, ultimately, discovers the truth about herself.

For once, I’m just going to get straight to the point: I did not like this book. I’m sorry to say it, but it’s true. I should have listened to reviews, and left this book alone. But NO. Me and my maybe-it’ll-turn-out-different attitude made me read this book. I mean: that cover! That synopsis! This should have been an amazing book! No, no, no. I have never been so frustrated and thankful after finishing a book. Don’t Ever Change was painfully slow and seemed to go nowhere.

I thought that since the main character Eva was a writer she would be a lot more relatable. I was so wrong. I wanted to slap her repeatedly. SHE WAS AWFUL. She was constantly judging people (and she mentions this herself) and doesn't handle criticism well. She was obsessed with the idea of changing for people and for Boston, but didn’t seem to change at all–seriously, no character growth in this book. She’s a terrible friend too. Her friends point this fact out constantly! She gets horny at all the wrong times (I don’t even want to go into this), and really full of her self as well: ❝I like to think of myself as the glue that holds [my friends] together❞ (35, eGalley*) and constantly blabbing about how other people should change their writing, not her. OH, SHUT UP. The thing is, Eva knows she’s was this book supposed to have an irritating character? Well, if it did, mission accomplished!
*text subject to change in final version

There were some small saving graces for this novel. Foster was one of them... well, kind of. I don’t get how he actually has a crush on this girl. I love how he was with the kids at the camp, but that’s just about it. Speaking of which, I really loved the whole setting for the camp. Now, if this book was COMPLETELY about summer camp, I would totally go for that. But no, it just had to have all this other filler plot with a weird-ass older sister and a love-square-thing (I’ll get to that in a bit) that seemed to run around in an aimless direction.

This book had a stream of consciousness narrative structure, but followed through with proper punctuation, etc. Eva’s character did tend to ramble on and on and on, so I guess that’s where the stream of thought comes in. It was interesting at first, because not many YA books feature stream of consciousness in the narrative, but after a while it just started to get tiring. Especially with all the puns and quips.

THE LOVE-SQUARE-THING. It was actually more of a love triangle but at one part it had to expand even further to a square–basically, one girl and three guys after her. Firstly, why would these guys even bother to like her? She’s awfullllll. Secondly, WHY. None of the romances went anywhere. Elliot disappeared for most of the novel except for the random phone calls where he constantly asks her what she’s wearing. Um, ew? And then there comes more useless filler plot with Shelby and Zack. Hopefully you can see why this book had me frustrated to the max.

There seemed to be no point to this book. I was really hoping for some character development, as I’d mentioned before, or some deeper change or revelation that was going to happen, but it was like reading a freakin’ flat-line. Oh wait, no, that would be inaccurate. More like a steep plunge into hell that never seemed to end. I don’t even think there was a big moment with her camp group. She made them start writing in journals (instead of planned activities–how did she manage not to get fired during most of the book?) and started editing their work. Um, these are NINE-year-olds. You’re supposed to help them grow, not cut them down by circling some of their work and writing “WHY?” (she’s not very helpful as well). 

I really considered DNF-ing this book. I really did. But I didn’t and I wish that I did. It was so pointless! I’m getting pretty angry with the book while writing this review and it all comes down to the absolutely rubbish main character: EVA. There could have been so much more potential to this book and I got nothing out of it. I don’t think I’ll be picking up another one of M. Beth Bloom’s books for a while unless I see mainly positive reviews. Even her other book Drain You has several reviews wishing that the book could have lived up to its potential. Ugh, I am so not going through that experience again–this book was CLEARLY not for me.

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  1. Sorry your experience wasn't much different from the others. I give you A+ for your positivity and daring though!

  2. Sorry this didn't work out for you but don't feel bad, we never know until we try right?

  3. I hate when a cover really pulls you in and then it ends up being not good at all!
    Missie @ A Flurry of Ponderings

  4. I am so sorry this book didn't work for you!

    Kate @ Ex Libris


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