When seventeen-year-old Ashley Watson walks through the halls of her high school bullies taunt and shove her. She can’t go a day without fighting with her mother. And no matter how hard she tries, she can’t make her best friend, Matt, fall in love with her. But Ashley also has something no one else does: a literal glimpse into the future. When Ashley looks into the mirror, she can see her twenty-three-year-old self.
Her older self has been through it all already—she endured the bullying, survived the heartbreak, and heard every ugly word her classmates threw at her. But her older self is also keeping a dark secret: Something terrible is about to happen to Ashley. Something that will change her life forever. Something even her older self is powerless to stop.
The book starts off with adult Ashley as she recounts the bullying she endured in high school. Because of a lie she told, Ashley has been bullied every moment since then. She’s been picked on both physically and emotionally and her self esteem is pretty much non existent. The only thing that’s constant in her life is the fact that her future self is always there for her in the mirror. Apparently, when Ashely looks in the mirror she doesn’t just see her own reflection but that of her older self as well. Apparently the older Ashley is there to guide her and to make sure she gets through the bullying and comes out on top at the other end.
Let me just start out by saying that I was bullied for two years in high school. I would show up to school and beeline it straight to my class. I was always watching my back because no matter where I turned someone was talking about me. It got to the point where my mom was ready to contact the school about it but considering that would only make my life there even more a living hell I just stuck through it until I graduated. At least I had my small group of friends that I could count on. I had a support group, but Ashley doesn’t. She has her one best friend, Matt, who doesn’t even really know that she’s being bullied or why. Things get even worse for Ashley when Matt starts dating one of her tormenters.
Considering I was bullied by a vast majority of kids from school, I wasn’t really able to fully connect with Ashley. She put herself in some situations that I just didn’t understand. I would never go to one of my attackers houses for a party. Heck, I went to a teen club once and that was a very bad idea. Dark club, loud music… you get the picture. Needless to say, I didn’t make that mistake again. However, that was not the case. Ashley didn’t learn her lesson the first time and instead went back into enemy territory again. I just didn’t get it. If you are outnumbered and going in with a sketchy person that’s already bailed on you… why would you put yourself in that situation? Sometimes it just felt like the author was trying to throw Ashley in situations to make her life more dramatic and miserable.
I liked that we got the two time differences in this story. You have future Ashley from the mirror and young Ashley, and Ashley who’s talking to the therapist. And you never really know if she’s just crazy or if she’s a time traveler who observes her past/future self from mirrors. I seriously have no idea what happened. What happened to the Ashley that was in the therapists office? Is she really the same one that young Ashley was talking to? Or was that a different future Ashley? I’m so confused. There’s one point where “therapist Ashley” talks about having sex on prom night, but that doesn’t happen with young Ashley… which is the Ashley that “therapist Ashley” is recounting from her past. So yeah, I’m confused.
Aside from the ending this was a good read. The author knows how to draw a reader in. I literally sat down to read it and didn’t get back up until I finished it. It’s just so raw, and you want to know what happens next. You want to know if it all works out for her or not. I really wish the ending was more clear. I was on board with the whole future self thing but then I was thrown for a loop and I never fully caught up to what had taken place.
“People you love should always be more important than people who judge you.”