“Genevieve is right: I don’t want this happiness, but blind happiness is better than inhabitable unhappiness.”
I am shattered. But oddly enough, I feel more happy than not. I can’t really explain it, but this novel really rattled my head. It made me think and reflect more than I ever expected. It stayed with me–in my mind–after I put it down at 3 in the morning and woke up with me a few hours later. The characters and their relatable problems never left me. They stayed with me and they haunted me.
Aaron Soto is a young boy living in the Bronx. He has a girlfriend who loves him and friends he plays games with and a dark past he can’t shake. Then he meets Thomas, and a great friendship blossoms. Aaron has a self-discovery like no other. The thing is, there were more than enough reasons not to side with Aaron in this novel, but I did, because he felt so real. He made mistakes, and he got hurt, and he hurt others, but that is life.
Wouldn’t it be great to be able to forget all the pain you’ve suffered? To erase the bad memories and keep only the good ones? Better yet, to keep the ones you think are real. Wouldn’t it be better to live in oblivion because ignorance is bliss? Wouldn’t it?
“Sometimes pain is so unmanageable that the idea of spending another day with it seems impossible. Other times pain acts as a compass to help you get through the messier tunnels of growing up. But the pain can only help you find happiness if you can remember it.”
I really can’t encapsulate everything my mind went through while reading this. It definitely made an impact on me, but I can’t decide if it was positive or negative. It’s bittersweet. I loved the message it delivered. To be happy, no matter what. To remember the pain. It matters. Sadness and happiness both matter. You can’t know one without the other.
“I’ve become this happiness scavenger who picks away at the ugliness of the world, because if there’s happiness tucked away in my tragedies, I’ll find it no matter what. If the blind can find joy in music, and the deaf can discover it with colors, I will do my best to always find the sun in the darkness because my life isn’t one sad ending–it’s a series of endless happy beginnings.”