Beautiful & full of Wonder! The Beginning of Everything by Robyn Schneider

Posted 22 July, 2013 by Danny in Blog, Danny, Danny's Book Review / 12 Comments

Beautiful & full of Wonder! The Beginning of Everything by Robyn SchneiderThe Beginning of Everything by Robyn Schneider
Published by Harper Collins, Katherine Tegen Books on August 27th
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Format: eBook
Source: Publisher
Buy on Amazon
5 Stars

Golden boy Ezra Faulkner believes everyone has a tragedy waiting for them—a single encounter after which everything that really matters will happen. His particular tragedy waited until he was primed to lose it all: in one spectacular night, a reckless driver shatters Ezra’s knee, his athletic career, and his social life.

No longer a front-runner for Homecoming King, Ezra finds himself at the table of misfits, where he encounters new girl Cassidy Thorpe. Cassidy is unlike anyone Ezra’s ever met, achingly effortless, fiercely intelligent, and determined to bring Ezra along on her endless adventures.

But as Ezra dives into his new studies, new friendships, and new love, he learns that some people, like books, are easy to misread. And now he must consider: if one’s singular tragedy has already hit and everything after it has mattered quite a bit, what happens when more misfortune strikes?

Robyn Schneider’s The Beginning of Everything is a lyrical, witty, and heart-wrenching novel about how difficult it is to play the part that people expect, and how new beginnings can stem from abrupt and tragic endings.

You know these books where you read the first few pages and you just know with absolute certainty that you adore this writing style, the words and that you know you will end up loving this book? Yes, this totally happened to me here…


Beautiful Words – Wonderful Characters

This book is filled with words that are just beautiful! The writing was so easy and effortless that I was so drawn into this book like it’s not happening so very often. I was glued to the pages drawing every word into myself until I wanted to live in this book. Yes, I know big word, but that’s how I felt. Ezra who tells us his story here was a perfect narrator and it was so easy to get lost into his story full of tragedies, humor, romance and finding his true self. Together with a vast cast of amazingly real and touching characters and I was totally and completely enthralled.

If really everything does get better the way everyone claims, then happiness should be graphable. You draw up an X axis and an Y axis, where a positive slope represents a positive attitude, plot some points, and there you go. But it’s crap, because better isn’t quantifiable.  ARC – The Beginning of Everything

Broken Golden Boy – what now?

I loved Ezra! Loved loved loved this boy! He had everything before the accident , super popular  athletic and a golden future. Then after the accident and being crippled he refused to just got back to his old life. Oh, of course he was sauer, no he was devastated and broken and refused old friendships – but then on the other side, this was his chance to look at himself and see himself in a whole different life. Who is Ezra without all the popular kids surrounding him and being a star-athlete?

Ezra finally learns what real friendship feels like, who his real friends are and he learns about things that are more important than winning the next game or getting drunk.

I loved following this slow and subtle learning and recognizing his true and real self. I was perfectly outlined without being patronizing and without wanting to lecture us. Now, we just feel the tiny shift in Ezra’s personality and his final awakening as the boy he was always supposed to be!


The Girl That Helped…

There was romance, thank goodness there was sweet and utterly endearing romance taking up a good part of Ezra’s healing. Cassidy was a wonderful quirky and unusual character without being totally out of the ordinary. She was just the perfect girl to help Ezra without actually talking about the pink elephant (=meaning being crippled). It was her personality that made Ezra see things in a new light and I loved her for this.


Real Friendships – True People

I absoufreaking adored Ezra’s friends, especially Toby. Toby took Ezra in after he refused to go back to his old Tennis Friends. He welcomed him back with open arms after they stopped being friends when Ezra became popular. He forced Ezra back into living without obvious pressure, it was the perfect thing to do! But there were other characters that played some smaller roles but still were genuinely great characters.

My only and tiny complain is the predictability of the last big twist, which I already thought was coming early enough. Then, there  was this bittersweet ending which is always a problem for me, yet here this ending was far sweeter and only a little bitter… Still..

Because I made a decision that year, to start mattering in a way that had nothing to do with sport teams and plastic crowns, and the reality is, I might have made that decision without her, or if  I’d never fallen in love with a girl who considered love to be the biggest disaster of all.  ARC – The Beginning of Everything


Oscar Wilde once said that to live is the rarest thing in the world, because most people just exist, and that’s all. I don’t know if he’s right, but I do know that I spend a long time existing, and now, I intend to live.  ARC – The Beginning of Everything

Bewitched Rating

Bottom Line

The Beginning of Everything by Robyn Schneider was just incredibly beautiful. The writing was outstanding and there was so much wonder in these words that it made me tear up and smile in wonder. It’s such a true and honest story that I hope many many many people will read and fall in love with just like I did!



Additional Info

While the original title “Severed Heads, Broken Hearts” sounded weird at first – it was so darn fitting after reading the book and it makes me a little sad they changed it..
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12 Responses to “Beautiful & full of Wonder! The Beginning of Everything by Robyn Schneider”

  1. This sounds like such a profound and poignant book, Danny! I have heard nothing but praise for it so far and I’m happy that you loved it too. I’ll make sure to get copy when the book releases because judging from your review, I will adore it too.
    I love how there is focus on friendship and romance! I can’t wait to meet Ezra, Cassidy and Toby! They sound absolutely wonderful!
    Beautiful review, Danny! You got me super excited for the book!
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  2. Confession Danny: I flipped to the end of this one immediately after snagging it at BEA and found the bittersweet aspect of it and then put it down and told myself I wouldn’t be reading it. I KNOW! I’m absurd, but you know how much I love that HEA and it made me sad that this book didn’t quite have that. Obviously the journey is the important part of this book so I need to get over myself and just read it. Anything you give this high a rating to I must read!

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  3. So glad you found a lot to enjoy in this one. It was a tough one for me to get through, and I just didn’t love it as much as I thought I would. I love literary YA but I thought this one just disconnected me instead of making me feel like I was one with the characters.

    Still would be up for reading more by Robyn though!

    P.S. The Disneyland cameos were totally a treat though! :p
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