The last time Lex was happy, it was before. When she had a family that was whole. A boyfriend she loved. Friends who didn't look at her like she might break down at any moment. Now she's just the girl whose brother killed himself. And it feels like that's all she'll ever be. As Lex starts to put her life back together, she tries to block out what happened the night Tyler died. But there's a secret she hasn't told anyone-a text Tyler sent, that could have changed everything. Lex's brother is gone. But Lex is about to discover that a ghost doesn't have to be real to keep you from moving on.
"Sorry Mom but I was below empty."
Those were the last words on a post it that Tyler left on a mirror the night he killed himself. There are so many questions Lexie has, the main one being Why? She also has a secret she is hiding about the night that Ty died, a secret that isn't revealed until almost the end of the book, a secret that hurts. A lot. This entire book just hurts. Tyler had been depressed, but then he started therapy and started taking medication. And people kind of forgot about the depression. That is what was so devastating about Tyler's death. In the time leading up to Tyler's suicide, there were no warnings. No signs. Or at least nothing that made sense until after he did what he did. Other books about suicide that I have read focus more on the person who committed suicide than anyone else. This book doesn't do that. The focus is on the people left behind. Yes, there are snippets of Tyler's life. But it is mainly about Lexie's grief and guilt and trying to move on from a horrible tragedy.
Lexie was an easy character to love. She was obsessed with Math and all things numbers. She could tell you how many years you were statistically expected to live or the statistical probability of actually seeing her brother's ghost. She loved numbers because they were rational and logical and always had a clear answer. But Tyler's death wasn't rational and can't be explained away with a clear numerical solution. I think that is the point of the book. Things don't wrap up in a neat little bow at the end. There are no happy endings here, just lots and lots of grief.
And oh, her mother was heartbreaking. I was torn between wanting to strangle her for not being there for Lexie and feeling so sad for her because I can't imagine going through that kind of loss. She actually tells Lexie that her life was over. What?!? She lost a child, yes, but she still had Lexie. Yet, she told Lexie that her life was OVER. I just wanted to weep for Lexie. Throughout the book, we get a glimpse of everything Lexie is really feeling in the form of a journal. The journal is her therapist's idea and since she is much more about numbers, she rejects the idea at first. But the journal does help her process her emotions and the grief she is feeling about Tyler. It even helps her process the blame she feels for herself over his death.
This book was beautiful and such a must read. It has been on my Kindle for months because I had to work myself up to reading such am emotional book. I am so glad I finally got to it!