BookTok’s “It Ends with Us,” Overhyped or Just Right?

By: Gracie Brocato, Columnist 

Views expressed in opinion columns are the author’s own

The 2016 release of the heartbreaking young adult novel, “It Ends with Us,” by Colleen Hoover, has sold more than 308,000 copies since the beginning of 2021, and has become a best-seller at the hands of BookTok. 

The hashtag #BookTok, with almost 50 billion views on the app, promoted Hoover’s novel with the #ItEndsWithUs hashtag, reaching a combined amount of 73 million views. 

From a small town in Maine, Lily has witnessed her mother’s abuse at the hands of her father for as long as she can remember. As she develops a sense of helplessness towards her own family, she becomes engulfed in helping a struggling schoolmate, who soon becomes her closest friend. As feelings develop, her relationship quickly develops into a romance with Atlas Corrigan, who Lily considers her “First Love.” After getting into contact with his uncle, he finally has a place to live in Boston, without leaving Lily with a goodbye. 

Nine years later as a recent graduate from college, living in Boston, Lily has dreams of opening up her own flower shop. Along the way, she meets Ryle Kincaid, a totally hot neurosurgeon, who happens to look amazing in scrubs. What she believes to be too good to be true leaves her stunned when Ryle hits her for the first time. 

As she questions her relationship, she begins to think of her first love. When Atlas returns, everything Lily had built is questioned. 

As a Colleen Hoover fan, this is unlike anything she has written before. This book will take you on a roller coaster of emotions — changing your perspective on someone you once loved in the span of two seconds. 

After witnessing Lily attend her abusive father’s funeral, you immediately fall in love with her character as she refuses to ignore his past. Nevertheless, when she’s introduced to this seemingly perfect man, you can’t help but root for them given her rocky past. It couldn’t have been more perfect, Lily was best friends with his sister and Ryle had bought her a penthouse, among other things that seemed like she was in a completely healthy relationship.  

Immediately after he hits her for the first time, it’s gut-wrenching. You instantaneously go through the motions along with Lily — from being absolutely in love to heartbroken in reading just one paragraph of the novel. From the shocking plot and twists at every turn of the page, this book contains strong subjects and is a for-sure tearjerker. As if your heart hasn’t gone through enough throughout the pages of this story, the ending will unquestionably make your heart plummet. 

It’s not every day you find a novel that completely immerses your heart into a storyline. The high rating of this novel stems from its originality and its exposing readers to strong concepts of domestic abuse. 

If the book alone wasn’t enough to rip your heart out, the author’s note at the end of the novel describes Hoover’s own experiences with abuse and her story. 

There is an unbelievable amount of respect for this novel, as there aren’t many books regarding domestic abuse and violence. Hoover’s sharing of her own story was incredibly brave and beautiful.

Rating: ⅘

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