New York Times Bestselling author Gena Showalter has written a plethora of series and is a renowned young adult author. This month she re-released her standalone novel, Oh My Goth, and I was absolutely delighted by this news. This life swapping story delves deep into how people handle grief, the toll that not processing emotions can have on someone and the people around them, and the love that can grow once boundaries are removed.
As you might imagine from the writer who happens to always have black nails and whose default sweater color at work is black, I had a bit of a gothish phase as a teen. Admittedly I was a very lazy goth, I sometimes painted my nails, but I totally did not have the budget for the things I really wanted to buy at Hot Topic. I get a lot of review emails for books and when I saw the title Oh My Goth I knew I needed to review it for The Nerdy Girl Express. As I was doing a bit of research I suddenly realized little goth me had read this book before. Oh My Goth originally released in 2006 and I could very clearly picture the original cover of the book with a library YA sticker stuck to the side. I didn’t completely remember the book, but I was more than happy to delve back into my former YA reading habits and rediscover Showalter’s world.
Oh My Goth is an emotional book and the elements that are highlighted are not popcorn reading material. Jade, our main character, is a goth girl who refuses to feel anything. While she sort of has friends, she refuses to truly let herself connect with them and any time someone starts to get close to her she feels herself pulling away. All of this behavior ties back to a tragic accident that happened when she was just five years old. When a new boy arrives at the school Jade begins to feel herself struggling to keep her emotions locked away, but when something truly bizarre happens she is forced to realize that maybe her choices aren’t allowing her to truly live.
I cannot recommend Oh My Goth enough. I was completely sucked into reading this book and as Jade finds herself contending with a new and strange world I kept cheering whenever she allowed herself to feel and connect. While she forces her emotions away for so long the story surrounding her flourishes with emotional touches and each character has a depth that makes them so captivating. Even the characters that Jade hates have some reason for acting the way they do and she does not gloss over how she still feels sorry for them in some way. Whether you are a young darkling hoping to connect with someone or an adult who remembers struggling to connect or is struggling even now, Oh My Goth is a beautiful story about finding yourself and embracing the world around you. You can find the new edition of Oh My Goth on sale wherever books are sold.
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