Reviews tagging Mental illness

Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, by Gabrielle Zevin

39 reviews

lizreadsbooks's review

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emotional sad medium-paced
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.0

Overall, I liked this. I think that Zevin portrays a very relatable picture of friendship and love (platonic and otherwise) through a person’s 20s and 30s. While I didn’t find Sam or Sadie to be especially likeable, I found myself rooting for them to succeed and to find their way through their own drama (both professional and personal). Though I’m not a gamer, I liked the narrative of how their games grew out of their life experiences. Two things didn’t work for me: firstly, there’s a plot point about 2/3 in that felt a bit emotionally manipulative and too convenient in terms of furthering Sam and Sadie’s story. Secondly, Zevin is often peppering the narrative with words like “to collogue” and “sere” that are an eye-rolling level of obscure. Have your dictionary at the ready, friends. Despite this, I’d recommend this novel for folks who want an angsty story about the friends you love and love to hate, and how those relationships can grow through life’s challenges. 

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aet_rebecca's review

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emotional inspiring lighthearted sad fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

4.0

A great book about friendship, work, and everything inbetween. The writing is wonderful, descriptive, imaginative but precise. 
While the emotions evoked were great, the story went too far for my taste.
Spoiler I did not think it necessary to kill off a beloved character, especially as it did not really change the dynamics of the remaining characters.
Spoiler

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bpwagoner's review

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challenging dark emotional funny sad tense medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

5.0

This is a book about life and loss and failure and identity. It's very beautiful, it's sometimes funny, it's always interesting. I will be thinking about this one for a long time, and I am already looking forward to a reread. You can tell that the author spent an appropriately long time building these characters, their world, and their lives. The characters are lovable, infuriatingly flawed, slow to change, and messily human. The events are so realistic and immersive that you question which elements are historical truth and which ones are fictional — it's that seamless. Other books attempt this (Daisy Jones and the Six comes to mind) but none so successfully. The traumas and heartbreaks described are quite heavy, and I recommend checking the content warnings. 5 stars, and thank you to the Bad Bitch Book Club for making this the September pick as well as my many friends who recommended it too.

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gabriel7372's review against another edition

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challenging dark emotional hopeful reflective sad medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.5


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chambersaurusrx's review

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emotional reflective medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

5.0


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miak2's review

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challenging emotional funny reflective sad medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

5.0

 
"What is a 'programmer'? ... A programmer is a diviner of possible outcomes, and a seer of unseen worlds." p. 351


Here's my hot take: Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow is the book that Normal People wanted to be. An intense, uncomfortable look into the unhealthy relationship between two young individuals with their own traumas. Don't get me wrong, both Sam and Sadie were incredibly frustrating characters. Both had the capacity to be selfish and cruel. Neither had developed particularly good communication skills. But their interactions always felt incredibly honest; it was never miscommunication for the sake of miscommunication. I could see myself in the best and the worst parts of each of them, and Marx too, and that made for a really special reading experience. (It also made for a very frustrating reading experience, as neither character was particularly likeable for large stretches of the book, but at the very least their cruelty could be empathized with and understood).

A few weeks ago, I made a comment to a friend that we don't see enough 'quirky' interactions between characters in books. Stupid inside jokes, dumb humor, etc. This book had it in spades and it was so refreshing. The twenty-something year-olds felt like me and my friends, laughing over stupid things that nobody else would find amusing and running with jokes long after they stopped being funny until they're suddenly funny again. In a similar vein, Zevin's descriptions of the most mundane things felt incredibly grounded in the weird way that our brains make observations and connections. I loved it all.

The other thing I loved about this book was the creativity Zevin demonstrated with her writing. For one, you could tell that this was a love story to video games, written by someone who's intimately familiar with them. Not only did this show in her references, but in some very specific creative chapter structures. We got a chapter in second person, some interview blurbs, and one chapter entirely through the eyes of a player character in a game. These came at pivotal moments in the book, and the emotion that came with them was all the stronger as a result of the way the chapter was written. There was so much sentimentality towards the end of the book, a testament to all that these characters went through over the past thirty years, with some really emotional call-backs that were well-integrated into the story.

I thought Zevin wrapped up the story perfectly; I would've been disappointed with any more or less. And I'm while left with this disappointment that I'll never experience Ichigo or Mapleworld, I felt sufficiently immersed in the games as I read about them, so I guess that just means I'll have to re-read at some point. 

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wsimcik's review against another edition

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hopeful reflective sad slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.5


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jaji's review against another edition

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emotional reflective sad slow-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Character
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.0

I'm not usually one for contemporary/literary novels but I enjoyed this one.

The writing was smart and crisp. It also invoked nostalgia for me, for the games I've played and the childhood I have. I didn't know much about early game development so that was fun to learn.

All the characters have their flaws, but not in a way that makes them truly awful. I think Zevin does justice to how messy our relationships can be.

She also does justice to showcasing the experiences of people who might have our class systems stacked against them.

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lindsayerin's review

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challenging emotional reflective sad medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

5.0


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nibs's review against another edition

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emotional hopeful sad medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

5.0

I can't say much without spoiling it, but I agree with the John Green quote on the cover of my edition: "One of the best books I've ever read."
I haven't had a reading experience like this since I read A Little Life back in 2016. I read the last 100 pages in one sitting. 
One thing that I value the most in this book (and makes it stand out from many others) is the exploration and value of non-romantic love. 

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