Today is the FINAL discussion post for Cracked Up to Be! We did it! Here are Crimson's thoughts on the end up please let us know what you thought of the book in the comments! And add your review/post about the book here!
*WARNING: Spoilers in the post below!*
In which everything falls apart and nothing is okay.
A lot happens in the last bit of this book. Dead dogs, relationships gone wrong, secrets revealed, and unfinished art projects.
First of all, Bailey. Yep, Courtney Summers does it. She kills off the dog. Which is a tragedy and should also be its own book genre, just so everyone can know to avoid those books because it’s horribly sad, and there’s no better way to get the tears flowing than have the poor innocent dog hit by a car.
But Bailey’s death leads Parker to admit some pretty shocking things, flipping on its head everything we thought we knew about her. Parker says that she doesn’t just want to stay away from people, she needs to stay away from people, because when people are around her, they get hurt. It’s now no longer that Parker has defenses up to protect herself, she has them up to protect everyone else. And that’s kind of interesting when you think about how first impressions of people, of Parker, can be so wrong.
Parker falls apart. Completely. If we thought we was messed up in the beginning of the book, then it’s taken to another level now. Like I said before, it’s no longer about Parker wanting to stay away from people, it’s that she’s unable to get close to them. Even when she wants to, like with Jake, she can’t really bring herself to. Parker has officially lost control of her life. She no longer has comebacks to everything. She can no longer even finish her sentences half the time.
Parker sums up the problem pretty succinctly:
I get caught up in outcomes. I convince myself they’re truths. No one will notice how wrong you are if everything you do ends up right. The rest becomes incidental. So incidental that, after a while, you forget. Maybe you are perfect. Good. It must be true. Who can argue with results? You’re not so wrong after all. So you buy into it and you go crazy maintaining it. Except it creeps up on you sometimes, that you’re not right. Imperfect. Bad. So you snap your fingers and it goes away.
Until something you can’t ignore happens and you see it all over yourself.
Parker has all these pressures on her from everyone around her, including herself, to be perfect. And then when she’s not, it breaks her.
I don’t know how to make it right again because I’m always wrong.
I’m a bad person.
I don’t think Parker is a bad person. I think people can sometimes be pretty harsh on these supposed mean girl characters because when we’re not dealing with real life (okay, even when we are), it’s easy to forget there’s a lot going on underneath that’s difficult to see.
Okay, so, I’m about to get a little sentimental right now, but I am okay with that on account of this being my last CRACKED UP TO BE post. I went to a private high school like Parker’s in a lot of ways, and it had this motto “The truth will set you free” (it was even, like, sewn into the uniforms), and when I was a teenager I always thought that was really stupid. But it isn’t, because all those secrets and lies we hide behind this image of perfect and everything-is-okay-even-though-I’m-dying-inside kind of destroys us. Just ask Parker.
The ending to this book is not perfect. It doesn’t offer any tidy endings. And maybe that’s why I like it so much. Because there’s no ending to this book wrapping everything up and making everything okay again. Instead, things just seem to get worse until you think they can’t possibly get any worse (until they do), and then you’re stuck wondering, well, where the hell do we go from here?
And it just feels like real life to me. Messy. There’s that tiny ray of hope to the end, so maybe it works out or maybe it doesn’t, but I think that maybe it will. Maybe it’ll be okay. I’m an optimist like that.
Now who’s ready to get their soul crushed by SOME GIRLS ARE?
Heartbreak, hope, and a lot of tears. What did you think of Cracked Up to Be?
And remember: Some Girls Are month starts tomorrow!
- Ciara (Lost at Midnight)