Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Addicted To Him by Lauren Dodd

Rating: 4*

This is going to be more of a ranting review regarding my reaction to the themes and content of the book. Having past experiences with physical and verbal abuse, and having seen female members of my family suffer because of male aggression and violence towards women, I feel very strongly about these subjects, particularly within the second half of the story. 

I won't go into depth describing the plot but in brief, Addicted to Him is the story of the 18 year old Cassidy who, having suffered a great ordeal of dysfunctional and cruel relationships and abuse from: Her boyfriend, best friend, mother, "step-grandparents", and step father; she stays with her biological father for the summer in a vouch to get away from it all. 

There, she meets and unexpectedly falls in love with Seth, who she can relate to on an emotional level. Seth heals her in ways she didn't think possible. As their relationship rapidly intensifies and her addiction to her boyfriend heightens, she (and we as the reader) find that he is not the person we thought he was.

Addicted to Him

I have to say that at first, I suspected there was something not right about him. This was hinted at in the way that he spoke (shouted, really) at his baby sister when she made an innocent and child like remark to Cassidy. Then I started to really like him. I respected him for the situation he was left in. I expected him to be like every other perfect but supposedly flawed male character that is out there in the NA area of literature. When I read that he punched a guy to the ground when the guy had been advancing upon Cassidy with unwanted attention, I rolled my eyes thinking "So he's one of those guys...again."  Turns out, he was a genuine pyscho!

How wrong was I? Well. We begin to see Seth's demeanor gradually change towards Cassidy when, out of the blue, he hits her. In a one time ounce of jealousy, we see him become a possessive monster who threatens to kill her if she ever leaves him. I was so frustrated that she automatically forgave him, though he was hardly remorseful, even after knowing everything she had suffered with in the past. He then conveniently passed his aggression off for the same old excuse of "having a bad day at work". It was more worrying to me that he was so nonchalant about the whole event and did not grovel in any way or form. What made me even more angry with the characters was that 30 seconds later,[ he proposes and expects her to accept. And of course, she does.  I've seen this so many times. Girls get knocked about, their boyfriend apologizes, promises to never do it again, but then of course does. My mam made me promise if a man so much as acted outwardly aggressive even in the same room as me, that I flee and not make the same mistake she did. The truth that people need to realize is that when they say they'll change or get help, whether they believe it or not, they won't.

The thing that angers me the most, is that while Cassidy accepted and dealt with Seth's physical and verbal abuse,and covered the marks he left, the only thing that actually made her leave him was when he slept with another girl.
What. The. Fuck.
She even admitted that while she can put with his abuse, she can not live with having to compete with another girl. 
 Am I missing something here? This girl is seriously damaged to the core.

Anyway, things carry out as there is more physical abuse and fornication. I worried that the author was going to make the incredibly bad and cliche decision of making Seth some what redeemable. It is safe to say, I have never been more relieved and pleased that this book did not have a fairy tale ending. Thank God. I'm also glad that in the end, Cassidy made the only right decision. Never the less, I won't lower my rating albeit how irritated I was with the characters decisions, because that would be close minded. The story was real life stuff. Situations like this occur all the time. The story was not happy, but honest. It told the truth, which is all I ever want.

No comments: