I See Reality by Various Authors

realityI See Reality – Various Authors (listed below)
Pub date: January 26th 2016 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Source: arc

Twelve original stories by top MCPG authors explore real issues for real teens.

Through prose and comics alike, these heart-pounding short stories ask hard questions about a range of topics from sexuality and addiction to violence and immigration. Here is the perfect tool for starting tough discussions or simply as an introduction to realistic literary fiction. In turns funny, thought-provoking, and heartbreaking, I See Reality will resonate with today’s teens long after the last page has been turned.

Contributing authors include Jay Clark, Kristin Clark, Heather Demetrios, Stephen Emond, Patrick Flores-Scott, Faith Hicks, Trisha Leaver, Kekla Magoon, Marcella Pixley, James Preller, Jason Schmidt, and Jordan Sonnenblick.

I adore anthologies, however they usually take me forever to get through because I’ll read one or two stories and then put it down for awhile, then rinse and repeat. Not because I don’t like them, it’s just there’s no big story pushing me to pick it up every moment I can and I tend to crave a full novel so the anthology will get forgotten about on occasion. I pushed myself to read this one in a decent amount of time, not only since it was an arc and I wanted to be able to review it around release, but also because I want to be apart of an anthology one day so I really want to read more. I love reading and writing short stories, just reading over 300 pages worth of them at once is a little much for me.

However, I really enjoyed this one, and I can’t stress enough how IMPORTANT some of these stories are, especially to young adults. They deal with some serious issues, some that I can personally say I dealt with as a teen (or even in my adult life) and almost all of them I can say I knew a fellow classmate who was going through something similar. Real life is scary, and messy, and it’s good to read about sometimes because when it’s happening to us we know that we aren’t alone. Whether it’s dealing with your sexuality, addiction, a crush, unplanned pregnancy, unhealthy relationships, or abuse. Most of the time we read fiction to escape our daily horrors, but sometimes it’s nice to read something real.

My 3 favorite stories in this anthology were Untitled by Faith Erin Hick’s, which is a comic and I just love love love the ending so much that I let my eyes roam over the last few panels for practically ever after I finished. I’m really getting into comics and graphic novels lately! Then Three Imaginary Conversations With You by Heather Demetrios, which made me sad but it also reminded me of a friend (and then I got sadder) and it just made me take a look at my own life at think about the things we do to ourselves in order to make other people happy, even undeserving people. And my third fave was The Sweeter the Sin by Jordan Sonnenblick. I loved this one because I’m a sucker for a male POV, and especially if it’s a romance because there’s something adorable about a shy little boy crushing hard on a girl.

Really the only one I wouldn’t give 4 stars or more to was Blackbird by Trisha Leaver, and only because I just didn’t like the characters. I would still give it a solid 3.5 stars though.

I hope teens pick this one up and thumb through all 12 stories. Even if just one resonates with them then it will have been worth it. And same for adults too, because we’re always learning about how to do life right no matter what age we are.

Overall I gave I See Reality 4 stars and I wish all the authors involved all the luck. Thanks for the feels!


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