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LYRICAL, SPARE, AND RICH, all at the same time Debut author Marisa Reichardt has written a beautiful, honest, heart ripping novel.It s been a long time since I a book pulled me back into what it truly feels like to be sixteen This novel did that.It would ve been easy for an author to allow Morgan the main character to wander into pathetic territory, after what all she s been through But with Reichardt s deft handling, watching Morgan brave it out as she overcomes obstacles and finds her way back to life is thrilling and gut wrenching and uplifting DO NOT MISS THIS ONE FOLKS Highly Recommend 1 Breathe2 You are okay.3 You are not dyingProbably my newest and most shocking addiction, book genre wise, is realistic fiction It might be a surprise to some people who don t know how neurotic I am cough, everyone knows, cough that there was a time before GR B.GR I didn t like books that made me feel too heavy or weighed down I still, admittedly, don t like to feel depressed while reading because it is supposed to be an escape, but my views have changed almost completely Reading a story that isn t sugar coated doesn t make me heavier it makes me feel whole I swim I float I breathe I burn I hope I dream I think I wonder I am Let me explain Before, when I read a book that wasn t, I don t know, action packed, full of romance, seeped in the paranormal perhaps another shocking fact seeing as I don t read many paranormals any , I didn t find it enjoyable I found it boring, lacking, and without intrigue But for some reason, the wonderful year of 2015 was my year of change, my year of adventure, my year of trying new things, expanding my horizons, and, ultimately, stepping widely out of my comfort zone And it greatly benefitted me I now have so many favorites for 2015 that I couldn t possibly list them or remember them all And, believe me, that s a good thing Now, since I was so wonderfully stretched this year, I found a new favorite nook to hide myself in Realistic Fiction I swear, when I read the first book that was RF in 2015, I literally literally face palmed myself I wasted so many years being a snob, lifting my nose haughtily in the air, turning the other way when realistic fiction was nudged in my direction, that my head was shoved so far up my ass I missed some absolute favorites that I may never find again Sure, I ve swept up quite a few and they were fabulous But there are so many that I ve passed over that I will never be able to find all of them againand that makes me want to curl up in a ball and cry But that s neither here nor there 2015 may have been my best year for books ever, but 2016 will be the year of capitalization I want to take all the wonderful stories I read in 2015 and use them as inspiration for what I NEED to read in 2016 and this is my first realistic fiction of the year If this is any indication of what my year will be like I have no reason to be scared, only good things are heading my way He chuckles as he rounds the corner and slides down next to me He knocks his knee against mine You okay Was it too dark, maybe I don t think my problem was the lights being out I meant the play That was some pretty dark shit for a bunch of kindergartners LOL.I don t quite know how to explain what this story is about without ruining it, so I ll be brief Morgan s life has been turned upside down she doesn t leave her apartment, she takes online classes instead of attending high school, and she sees a therapist every Tuesday and Thursday in her apartment She can t watch the news and she regularly has panic attacks Her life used to be normal parties, boys, best friends, and swimming for her high school team Her life was everything she could ever hope for.and then it wasn t One fateful day October fifteenth forever shaped her in ways she never imagined possible Guilt threatens to smother her and secrets almost bury her alive If only if only.if only it hadn t happened If only he hadn t been there if only What if less than one hour of horror took everything good away from you in the blink of an eye extinguished all your hopes and dreams by taking your freedom from you in an instant What would you do Morgan can t even fathom walking outside her apartment Wellat least until Evan moves in next door And that s onething that makes me know that even though Evan and I live next door to each other, we are miles apart He will leave his house every day.He will traipse through the courtyard of our building.I will watch him go He will be a boy living out in the world I will be a girl peeking out from behind a curtain Aaahhhh Evan I adored him, naturally He was sweet, kind, caring, endearing, loyal, and everything that Morgan needed He really was so muchthan a love interest He was her rock He was her light at the end of the tunnel He was the person that created the spark that stoked her inner fire again He may have been just one of many inspirations in her life, because she adores her brother and mother, but he was the oxygen she needed to come back to life.he was her lifeline You weren t swimming You were sitting at the bottom of the pool doing nothing I was thinking Well, stop thinking How am I supposed to do that And it s crazy because, while I thought he would have a large part in the story since he was in it so much at the beginning, he really wasn t in it near as much as I d have hoped But that s my point he wasn t an extremely large part, but he had a massive impact and burrowed himself deep in my heart She pushed him away and pushed him away and shunned him, one of my problems with the story even though I could never possibly understand her pain, yet he never gave up on her It warmed my heart and soul, lighting me from the inside out, igniting my warm fuzzies and fluttery butterflies I didn t want it to get cold That s why I needed you to open up, he says Thanks, Superman He grins like he s relieved I m calling him that I notice dimples digging into his tan cheeks There s a part of me that wants to nudge my pointer finger into one of them because they re so cute I m not superman Clark Kent, maybe Not Superman The bonds formed in this book, her mother, brother, Evan, her friends, Brenda her therapist , they were beautiful They were by far the biggest highlight and strongest selling point in this story, and I found the relationships wholly realistic they were honest and raw, gritty and deep Relationships aren t all sunshine and rainbows, puppies and kittens, flowers and unicorns they are harsh and true and fragile as glass but if you open yourself up, trust in others and in yourself, they can be the most rewarding asset in your life Morgan s struggles resonated deeply within me until they didn t Ouch, okay, hear me out The beginning was so strong, and I adored every minute, even in the end But at one point, when she began to push Evan away repeatedly I had a hard time connecting with it And that s the thing, you don t have to It s the truth People have moments in their lives where they are at their lowest and they can t believe someone would want to go through it with them for them, and that s where I lost my ability to understand I hurt when she hurt, I ached when she ached, and I yearned when she yearned.but for about ten percent at one point you ll know when I couldn t fathom why she went there Other than that This book was perfection..and I can t imagine never having learned about it.Her journey, her quest to restore faith in humanity and the world is one I don t know I could have traveled A quote from my favorite series of all time sums up Morgan s life perfectlyIt takes ten times as long to pull yourself together as it does to fall apartAnd it s true It s simple It s right But most importantly, it applies to me If what happened to her had happened to me, I might not have been as strong or as courageous as she well, she gets there, that s the whole point It took one moment, maybe 20 minutes, for her world to shatter into oblivion.yet it took her months to try and walk out her door Being reduced to a heaping, crumpled pile on the floor is a harsh thing but it s what we do after that defines who we are I only hope I never have to live through such a tragedy but if I do, I hope I ll have the courage to put one foot in front of the other and live my life to the fullest It s all any of us can do Thank you, Laurie Elizabeth Flynn, for bringing this wonderful book to my attention Forof my reviews, please visitI swim I float I breathe I burn I hope I dream I think I wonder I am This book was everything I hoped for it to beyet there was still something that kept it from being an instant favorite Perhaps my mood, my tiredness from being severely sick , or just a lack of one little thing were the causes, or maybe it just is what it is A very endearing, thought provoking book that touched me deeply, but didn t stay with me Staying with that format, I don t have time to write a review right now, seeing as I m at work and was late because I m sick again , but I will post one tomorrow for this wonderful and heart warming story.Hope I can do it justice Thank you, Laurie Elizabeth Flynn, for bringing this wonderful book to my attention Forof my reviews, please visit [Download E-pub] ♤ Underwater ⚕ Forgiving You Will Allow Me To Forgive Myself Morgan Didn T Mean To Do Anything Wrong That Day Actually, She Meant To Do Something Right But Her Kind Act Inadvertently Played A Role In A Deadly Tragedy In Order To Move On, Morgan Must Learn To Forgive First Someone Who Did Something That Might Be Unforgivable, And Then Herself But Morgan Can T Move On She Can T Even Move Beyond The Front Door Of The Apartment She Shares With Her Mother And Little Brother Morgan Feels Like She S Underwater, Unable To Surface Unable To See Her Friends Unable To Go To School When It Seems Morgan Can T Hold Her Breath Any Longer, A New Boy Moves In Next Door Evan Reminds Her Of The Salty Ocean Air And The Rush She Used To Get From Swimming He Might Be Just What She Needs To Help Her Reconnect With The World Outside It makes me sad to have to say this but nowadays, a book with a major character dealing with the aftermaths of a high school shooting is a very necessary read and Underwater is that exact book I wish our society didn t need this Parents shouldn t have to fear for their children every time they went to school but every day, they worry and it breaks my heart to think of how we have to live this way I know the root cause hasn t been addressed yet especially in the U.S and I m not sure if it ever will be so until then, books like this are a simple way to comfort and console those of us who survived such tragic events.The story centers around Morgan, a survivor of a mass high school shooting Most of the story happens in her small apartment where she has spent the last five months of her life since the shooting Afraid of everything, she doesn t dare step foot out their apartment door until Evan, the too friendly neighbor comes along A lot of readers will probably complain why the catalyst for a girl s change has to be a guy all the time but I really don t mind in this particularly case because Evan is a great guy who is really right for Morgan Of course it helps greatly that she has a cool therapist , an adorable little brother and a supportive mother who together form a small but strong network of people to help her get through a difficult phase of her life At first, I was bothered by the choppy writing but then slowly understood that this is Morgan speaking The sadness is loud in her words and clipped sentences but as the story progresses, a significant change in her tone is obvious as she opens herself up to getting better, to getting help and helping herself Overall, its a well written story, easy to read, relatable and genuine. Thank you to Pan Macmillan Australia for sending me a copy of this book I loved this book because I could relate so much to the main character, not the traumatic experience, but the anxiety and agoraphobia that she developed So many things had me nodding my head in agreement I loved the cute little romance that happened throughout and how supportive they both were and they were just so good for each other BUT he was only really supportive and good for her towards the end It took him a while to actually understand what she was going through and how to react to certain things that she did Sooooo I m kind of 50 50 on the romance.It doesn t explicitly say what Morgan went through in the synopsis, but you find out about a quarter of the way through that view spoiler there was a school shooting hide spoiler Source I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read to review basis Thanks to Pan Macmillan and NetGalleyI wish you thought about methan a little, he says I think about youthan a littleThis was an interesting story about a girl dealing with PTSD after an event at her high school.I felt quite sorry for Morgan in this story, as what had happened wasn t her fault, but she felt guilty anyway for what she felt was her part in the incident It seemed quite obvious that she was suffering once I got into the book, and her limitations because of it was pretty harsh.The storyline in this was part mystery over what had actually happened to Morgan at school, and part contemporary romance as Morgan met her new neighbour Evan This blended quite well and the story flowed nicely, although I did want to find out what had happened a bit quicker than we did.The ending to this was pretty good, and I was pleased that Morgan was able to make the progress she did.6.5 out of 10 Oh man, this is one of those books that s really hard to review for two reasons One, I did not want to give away any of the mystery of the book and thus spoil it for someone Two, I ABSOLUTELY FREAKING LOVED IT AND WRITING REVIEWS FOR BOOKS THAT I JUST WANT TO SHOUT LOVING THINGS ABOUT IT DIFFICULT I want to start by suggesting that you ADD THIS TO YOUR GOODREADS RIGHT NOW, PREORDER IT AND THEN START TO COUNT DAYS FOR JANUARY 12TH BECAUSE WITH THIS BOOK, YOU ARE IN FOR A TREAT I had heard good things about Underwater from some of my blogging pals, but I never expected it to be this good And I am kind of happy I didn t, because though I generally do not like surprises, being surprised by a book is one of the best things I know Underwater focuses on Morgan who hasn t left her apartment for months Instead of going to normal high school, she has spend most of the junior year taking online classes that allow her to stay inside in her pajamas She has a rhythm take classes, watch TV, eat tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches every day for lunch Why does not Morgan go outside, you may ask She is scared She is afraid of losing control She is terrified of the things that can happen to her if she leaves the protective walls of the apartment She feels like danger lurks everywhere No place is safe, expect her apartment And going to a normal school, living normal life like she used to, feels like something she can never do again.When Evan moves to the apartment next door, he brings with him the smell of ocean and sun He reminds Morgan of the time before her life came crashing down He gives her hope of maybe someday being okay again But unlike Evan, Morgan cannot go outside, even if a part of her would want it Morgan does not want to burden Evan with her reality, but at the same time she feels like Evan might be able to help her And maybe Morgan can help Evan too, since she knows something about what happened to someone close to Evan There s muchto this book than the slowly budding relationship of Morgan and Evan I loved the relationship between Morgan and Brenda, the therapist Morgan sees twice a week This kind of patient therapist relationships are extremely important because of the stigma that is still unfortunately present I feel like too often relationships like this are portrayed without proper research and because of that they are flat, prejudiced and tend to support the stigmatized attitudes Reichardt carefully and skillfully builds the relationship between Morgan and Brenda, showing the benefits of therapy and what goes into the process.There s also wonderful family dynamics found from this novel I loved the relationship between Morgan and her little brother who does not quite understand why Morgan is staying inside, but manages to provide her with support, love and distractions The dynamic between Morgan and her mother is also extremely interesting, especially after Morgan s distant father is added to the mix Reichardt writes so well and in a way that made it impossible for me to put this book down The way she writes the thoughts and feelings of Morgan is extremely touching and easy to connect with despite the fact that I have never experienced the things Morgan goes through By the end of this book, I had tears in my eyes, because the power of Reichardt prose and characterization managed to take me by storm.There was an element to this book that I did not expect at all I don t want to spoil it to anyone because I loved the process of figuring it out, puzzling together the pieces of information Reichardt gives, but I can say that it has something to do with why Morgan is so afraid Though the subject matter of the book and the things Morgan goes through can get very dark, this novel has an incredible sense of hope and new changes that are up for grabs as soon as soon as Morgan feels like she s ready Underwater is an incredibly promising, mind blowingly good debut novel that makes me eagerly anticipate Reichardt s future as an author. I was lucky enough to get my hands on this stunning debut and I cannot say enough about the power of this novel The MC deals with anxiety and PTSD and this trauma induced illness forces her to shut herself inside a small California apartment But there is nothing gloomy about this novel Morgan, our heroic MC, has so much depth and competence throughout her story and remains connected to the deepest love for her little brother and mother The little brother, incidentally, jumps off the page with his boyish charm and innocence, which is contextualized within his own struggle to accept their family s shifted reality The microcosm in this apartment is filled with enough hope and support to keep the reader cheering for the main character s recovery Step by step The ease of this author s language lulls you into Morgan s world, her story, her struggle The writing is never heavy handed And the anxiety and mental illness born of a traumatic event It is handled with such authentic expertise that I know readers will easily be able to identify with Morgan With all her strengths and weaknesses They will see themselves reflected in her insights, fears, needs She is real She is flawed She is complex and gorgeous in her complexity And she embodies strength in every literal step she takes toward defining how she can live in the outside world There is also a love interest, and Evan couldn t beamazing He s as easy as a California beach day, accepts Morgan for who she is and meets her there without ever forcing her to move outside her comfort zone Plus, he s hilarious and swoony and smart and also quiet when he needs to be What I found most compelling about the love interest was that he was never the catalyst for Morgan s recovery, a solution a less competent writer could have easily woven into the storyline Instead, Evan s acceptance and patience allows Morgan the physical and mental space she needs to recover Is she lured to the California beach air It s sand His abs The water she craves Yes And this tension lives throughout the story But Morgan must decide if this journey beyond her anxiety is one that she wants to take for herself Not for a boy Not forced for another This is an honest read about a teen girl struggling with the crippling effects of anxiety and I LOVED, LOVED, LOVED these pages It s hard to imagine a YA fan that wouldn t. Find all of my reviews at On October 15th Morgan s life changed forever What she thought was a random act of kindness ended up being anything but and Morgan can t live with the aftermath Why can t I be happy to be alive instead of afraid of livingNow Morgan lives behind the walls of her family s apartment never stepping even one foot outside Nothing will ever hurt me if I don t cross the thresholdSome days Morgan doesn t even feel safe to be inside The days when the rain falls bring back all of the memories of October 15th she has tried so hard to repressBut life moves on around her and Morgan is well aware she needs to always try even though it might be baby step by baby step to move on, to cope, to get out once again After all We re all waiting for things to happen that might never come things that, if they do come, might not be as bad as the things that have already occurredI picked up this book for one reason and one reason alone THAT COVER Naturally, I was denied the ARC However, thanks to Chelsea s review this one remained on my radar and I was the first in line for a library copy What a good book this was Everything about it seemed so real from the MC Morgan who knows she was attractive and popular and smart and had everything going for her before, but who can t figure out how to go on in the now to Evan who was maybe a bit two dimensional but should have been so because it wasn t his story to family with real life problems who were actually part of the story to palpable emotions to realistic romance that served a purpose because 17 year old girls do develop crushes on the adorable new boy next door , but did not fix any of the problems Nope Morgan had to work through her issues like a real person before she could find light at the end of the tunnel A light that sure looks prettier when it s on a beach It turned out I wasn t dying on the outside I was only dying on the inside, where nobody could see Wow Underwater stunned me This is the first 2016 book that I read for this year and boy what a good choice This debut novel deserves to be in your to read list people, but don t make it stay there for too long In fact, after reading my review, I highly suggest that you pick this book up immediately and get to reading Morgan doesn t go outside any She study online, she meets with her therapist at her house and she only talks with her mother and her brother Any other interaction besides that gets her nervous and gives her panic attack There s a reason behind why Morgan turned out to be this way You see, she is not used to be like that But an incident that she witnessed changed everything There s a lot to be praised about Underwater but I ll start with the author s vivid and lyrical writing It s impossible to read this book without the words tugging your heartstrings Every emotion that Morgan feels are easily rolling off through the pages and you can t help but feel with her Her sadness, anxiety, excitement and of course even her joy Throughout the whole book I feel like Morgan was just a close friend, and she s telling me her story And I m savoring each word We can all agree that the plot has been done before I have read some already In fact, the concept is not at all new And like I say everytime, I admire the authors who writes realistic fictions such as this But what makes Underwater stands out Underwater doesn t shy away with every issue that a person like Morgan encounters This novel is raw and real Every character is alive and will affects you in their own ways But the most important thing that Underwater have is that it makes you aware It makes you think What if you re in the position of Morgans mother What if you have a friend just like Morgan What if you re in Morgan s shoes There was a romance aspect in this novel as well but its not really the main point of the story The guy didn t save Morgan, she saved herself She didn t save herself for the guy either She did it for herself And that s what s important to me.A powerful and mesmerizing novel That s what Underwater is There are A LOT of books coming out this year and I m sure your TBR is already stuffed But this book is not something you want to miss Underwater is important, real and provocative I can t wait to hearof Marisa Reichardts contribution in the YA table.