A review by emilysh
Eliza and Her Monsters, by Francesca Zappia

challenging emotional sad medium-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? It's complicated
  • Loveable characters? It's complicated
  • Diverse cast of characters? No
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes


Spoiler Overall I enjoyed this cute story of friendship, growth, love, and mental illness. I really liked the story and the major conflict of the book. I wasn't fully satisfied with the ending however. I think it comes down to me not connecting with the love interest. The author didn't take as long as I would have prefered actually building the romance and letting us get to know Wallace, so it was hard for me to be satisfied with the ending in light of the choices he made during the conflict. 

Update: turns out I had stronger feelings than I initially thought. Wallace's life does seem fairly hard, however his view that Eliza's life is privileged and perfect because she has found success and has money is harmful. This view is totally ignoring the crippling mental health issues that hold her totally captive from a normal life or even interacting with the world. I can see how Wallace would initially react in anger and have such an unfair opinion of Eliza, but the book never goes back and addresses that view. As a reader, I'm expected to believe that Eliza and Wallace just move on with their relationship without any sort of real apology or working through that issue, and that's SO harmful. Maybe it takes place of screen, but handling something that important off screen is almost worse than not addressing it in my opinion. And don't tell me him coming to her and telling her that her life is more worthwhile than anything counts, because frantic moments like that are not where people actually work things out or acknowledge their wrong opinions.

Given the weight of this issue, I can't give the book more than three stars.

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