Release Date: September 8, 2013
Rating: 3 out of 5
I’ve always had the morbid curiosity about student-teacher relationships ever since I watched Pretty Little Liars. The synopsis for this story instantly intrigued me, and although the format for The Truth About You and Me is unique and works out well, everything else falls a little flat.
The one quality that stands out (besides the forbidden relationship) in The Truth About You and Me is the story-telling, or, rather, the format. Madelyn, the main protagonist, writes letters to Bennett, the love interest. I found that this way of revealing their relationship works really well and it’s a nice change from the usual third person POV. Somehow, it makes it easier to be fully engaged and captivated in her story.
Sadly, that’s pretty much all I liked in this book. My biggest issue is the romance between Madelyn and Bennett. It’s love at first sight, and throughout the book, their relationship doesn’t grow, and the reasoning behind their love for each other isn’t revealed. During the story, I feel that Madelyn only loves Bennett because she has the urge to be rebellious after so many years of following her parents’ instructions. And Madelyn herself comes off as a very creepy 16 year-old girl pining over a 26 year-old man. It’s weird to say that I liked Bennett more as a character because he felt much more like the innocent victim being dragged into Madelyn’s world.
And just on a little side-note: Madelyn’s 16, and going into her freshman year of college. She’s supposedly extremely smart. Nowhere in the book did she display her intelligence. I’m not just saying she made a dumb decision by going out with her teacher, but book-smart-wise; even in her classrooms she didn’t seem very smart.
I guess the unbelievable-ness in The Truth About You and Me is the problematic area for me. The romance between the student and teacher isn’t there; their chemistry is nonexistent. Her supposed intelligence did not shine through in any scene. Along with that, Madelyn is an uncomfortable character to read about, and the only positive (and redeeming) quality is the way the story is told. Overall, Amanda Grace took a shot at writing this forbidden relationship, but there are so many flaws that I think it is just okay.