Review: The Way I Am Now

Cover of the book The Way I Am Now by Amber Smith.

Review: The Way I Am Now

Cover of the book The Way I Am Now by Amber Smith.The Way I Am Now

Series: The Way I Used to Be; 2

Written by Amber Smith
Margaret K. McElderry Books, 2023

ISBN: 9781665947107 (hardcover)
$24.99 CAD
432 pages

Ages: 14 years old and up

Review by Kyra Paquet

Eden is still healing from the traumatic sexual assault she experienced at the hands of her brother’s best friend years ago. This sequel to The Way I Used to Be focuses on the joys and pitfalls of finding love, while healing from trauma. Eden is complex; her relationship with herself and her body has changed drastically since the abuse, and she is learning how to accept the naivety of young love, how to communicate boundaries, and how to navigate her changing relationship with her brother. She makes mistakes and does act out of turn at times, exhibiting behavior that is completely normal for a survivor of sexual assault. For the first time in her life, Eden finds her voice and uses it to stand up for herself when she is disrespected both at work and in court seeking justice for her sexual assault case. The relationship between Eden and Josh is heartwarming and realistic, setting a great example for young readers. Together, they embrace the insecurity of youth and provide each other with a safe space to explore what love and sexuality means to them.