Rebecca: Born first, prettier, Hephzi's always been the popular one.
The Father: When he was busy with his bottle we were usually safe. Usually.
The Mother: Her specialist subject was misery and lessons of painful silence ...
Hepzibah and Rebecca are twins. One beautiful, one disfigured. Trapped with their loveless parents, they dream of a normal life. But when one twin tragically dies, the other must find a way to escape. Because if she doesn't, she'll end up like her sister.
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I requested this as a review copy and I did receive one, but I actually started this book in the library. I spotted a different cover of it and it took me a moment to work out it was the same book! I immediately sat down for 45 minutes and lost myself in this amazingly beautiful, thought provoking story. And then went home and continued reading it!
There's an overall feeling of doom hanging over the book when I was reading Hephzibah's chapters and that's because she writes of 'Before'. Rebecca writes of 'After' - after Hephzibah has died. I found it difficult to connect with Hephzibah and I can't decide if this is because I knew she would die at some point or because overall, she was a very frustrating character. Rebecca has Treacher-Collins Syndrome and I strongly felt that Hephzibah should have been protecting her sister but instead she seemed to be constantly putting her down, letting Rebecca take the beatings for her and cared more about escaping for the night to go partying than working out a plan to run away. I know she was an abused child herself, but I still found it immensely difficult to like her.
Rebecca is easily the stronger character. You find out various secrets throughout her story and it slowly became clear just how strong a person she was. Her chapters gave me hope, that she might one day escape her prison and make a life for herself.
Received free from Razorbill in exchange for an honest review.