The End of Our Story by Meg Haston

3 stars

Reviewed by Makenna.

With a title like The End of Our Story, I expected a lot more sappy romance. But the book actually has a good story. Tragedy strikes Wil's family, and at first it all seems straightforward. But soon more information comes to light. 
 
As for content, there are some things that children younger than 14 may find disturbing--even older teens should be advised if they are sensitive to violence or language. "F***", "d***", "b***h", and other words are used throughout. Domestic violence is described vividly, and one character is killed. 
 
Inner struggle and torturous battles with the conscience are at the forefront, especially when it comes to Wil and his relationship to his father. Families are troubled and dysfunctional, though flashes of the happy family that is possible are seen on multiple occasions.
 
Substance abuse seems prevalent in the lives of these high school seniors and also among the adults of the book. Bridget (aka Bridge), one of the two protagonists, has struggled with alcoholism in the past and is trying desperately to remain sober so that she can get into the college of her choice. Drugs and alcohol are apparently easy to find. The breakup between Wil and Bridge was a consequence of Bridge's intoxication, and drinking leads to violence in Wil's home.
 
The aforementioned breakup was due to a moment of unfaithfulness on Bridge's part, in which she kissed another boy. Wil and his girlfriend at the start of the novel, Ana, kiss multiple times. Bridge and Wil, upon their reconciliation, also kiss and come close to sex in a hotel room. Physical boundaries are low on the priority list.
 
Religion is seen at the bare minimum. A funeral is held in a church.
 
Overall, the story is well-written and well-thought-out. It is real, raw, and emotional. But younger teens and especially children should be aware of mature themes and content.