Title: Even If We Break
Author: Marieke Nijkamp
Publication: September 15, 2020
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Genre: YA Fiction, LGBTQ Fiction
SYNOPSIS: (From Goodreads)
FIVE friends go to a cabin.
FOUR of them are hiding secrets.
THREE years of history bind them.
TWO are doomed from the start.
ONE person wants to end this.
NO ONE IS SAFE.
Are you ready to play?
**A copy of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.**
Having read Marieke Nijkamp novels before, I always have high hopes I’m going to enjoy them. Two previous five star reviews on This Is Where It Ends and Before I Let Go had me eager to read Even If We Break.
I will start by saying I love the array of characters we get in this book. We get the rich, somewhat snobby girl, the wanna be rich boy, two similar, but still very different LGBTQ members, some from lower income classes, and all have come together to form this diverse group that just so happen to love the same thing… role play! While they are together for one last time after the previous year or so has torn them apart as a group and as individuals, creepy stuff starts happening. Some go missing, pools of blood, noises that shouldn’t be there… all these add up to one horrifying night.
While I enjoyed the general story, I had a few qualms about this book. My first was that they spoke in RPG lingo often while they were playing the game, and I get the point of it, but as someone who is very unfamiliar with role playing and game play such as this, I was very confused at times. I was eager to move past those moments. Also be prepared for the use of they/them when describing an individual. One of the characters identifies that way and I kept having to clear my head because grammatically I was confused, but I got the hang of it quickly.
The next thing that bothered me was sometimes it felt that the characters were just incessantly babbling on about their feelings or their lives. The same thought would be repeated four different ways and take up pages and pages of time. Those are the moments I found myself struggling to read on. Those could have easily been cut down a bit and still had the same impact on the story without just taking up space. I’ll call it a slip in writing style, if you will. Usually Nijkamp is concise, yet detailed. This time it just rambled a bit at times.
With those two things out of the way, and yes they did disturb me enough to affect the overall rating I was giving this novel, the general story was good and the suspense and fear level was high. I found it was hard to read this book before bed because it gave me the creeps and had me hearing and thinking things I should not before I fall asleep. The fact that Nijkamp could creep me out that much was impressive. Probably my favorite part of reading this novel.
Overall I am still a fan of Nijkamp and will continue to read her books as she releases them. This was not my overall favorite due to some of the quirks I didn’t exactly love, but I still enjoyed it. Especially all that suspense! If you like YA Fiction and you love a good scare, pick up Even If We Break.
STAR RATING: 3/5
Pick up your copy of Even If We Break by Marieke Nijkamp on Amazon, Barnes and Noble and check your local bookstore. Also make sure to add it to your To Reads list on Goodreads and leave feedback for the author when you are finished. Check out more from author Nijkamp on her website here and our review of her book This Is Where It Ends HERE and Before I Let Go HERE.