The Letting Go
Everyone Emily has ever loved has been brutally murdered. The killer has never been caught, but Emily knows who’s responsible.She is.It’s the only possible explanation. Emily is the one thing all the victims have in common, which can only mean that someone—or something—is killing them to make her suffer.Determined never to subject another person to the same horrible fate as her parents, friends, and pets, Emily sequesters herself at a private boarding school, keeping her classmates at a distance with well-timed insults and an unapproachable air. Day after day, she loses herself in the writing of Emily Dickinson—the poet makes a perfect friend, since she’s already dead. Emily’s life is lonely, but it’s finally peaceful. That is, until two things happen. A corpse appears on the steps of the school. And a new girl insists on getting close to Emily—unknowingly setting herself up to become the killer’s next victim.

The Letting Go Details

TitleThe Letting Go
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseJul 3rd, 2018
PublisherSky Pony Press
Rating
GenreMystery, Young Adult, LGBT

The Letting Go Review

  • USOM
    January 1, 1970
    (Disclaimer: I received this free book from the publisher. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)The ominous thriller tone is established from the very beginning. This undercurrent pulls you along the whole story, making you need to figure out who the killer is. The premise along gets you, but what ended up keeping me was the character of Emily. Emily is entirely intriguing because while the struggles of Emily are unique, the challenges she deals with are also universal - (Disclaimer: I received this free book from the publisher. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)The ominous thriller tone is established from the very beginning. This undercurrent pulls you along the whole story, making you need to figure out who the killer is. The premise along gets you, but what ended up keeping me was the character of Emily. Emily is entirely intriguing because while the struggles of Emily are unique, the challenges she deals with are also universal - this fear of getting close to people. Emily is also a lesbian, which made for a very lovely surprise!full review: https://utopia-state-of-mind.com/revi...
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  • Carolyn
    January 1, 1970
    Disclaimer: I did NOT receive a copy for in exchange for a review. I paid full price and preordered this book the day I knew it was going to be sold on Amazon because I have been a huge fan of the author’s writing since she published Secular Homeschooling Magazine almost a decade ago. So my disclaimer is nothing more than an assurance that this review is fair and factual.So, did the reality of this novel meet my admittedly quite high expectation? Without a doubt. Witty, sharp, intelligent writin Disclaimer: I did NOT receive a copy for in exchange for a review. I paid full price and preordered this book the day I knew it was going to be sold on Amazon because I have been a huge fan of the author’s writing since she published Secular Homeschooling Magazine almost a decade ago. So my disclaimer is nothing more than an assurance that this review is fair and factual.So, did the reality of this novel meet my admittedly quite high expectation? Without a doubt. Witty, sharp, intelligent writing combined with unusual literary techniques make this novel fresh and completely opposite of so many first novels that are “formulaic.” I also applaud Ms. Markus on her ability to engage the reader with language that you can literally fall into and lose yourself in. Some of the lines I particularly liked:“She thought most poetry was boring, trite, or pretentious—sometimes all three, if the poet really worked at it.”“It’s impossible to look behind silence for all the lies that might be hiding there.”“It was a million o’clock at night and everyone in the world was asleep and I was obviously only in the library because I wanted to be alone, so naturally M strutted in like she owned the damned place. I glared at her as best I could on short notice.”“I can’t stop thinking about what happened to him.” So none of the rest of us gets to stop thinking about it, either. Thanks. “You have to stop thinking about that,” Lucy commanded. I’d kind of love it if Lucy decided to become a therapist. If anyone can verbally bludgeon the world into a state of timid sanity, it’ll be Lucy.”I’ll be looking forward to this author’s second novel with anticipation.
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  • Alisa Ellie
    January 1, 1970
    "The end would be as easy as letting go." In spite of gloomy and tragic circumstances of the story, the author managed to trick my mood and emotions with a smart narration style. It's not abstruse but still made me ponder over the same sentence again and again. The language is catchy and involving. The book is easy to read, but it still keeps me company and makes me feel passionate about it every day more and more.I liked the characters very much. They appeared to be loving and of a big heart, "The end would be as easy as letting go." In spite of gloomy and tragic circumstances of the story, the author managed to trick my mood and emotions with a smart narration style. It's not abstruse but still made me ponder over the same sentence again and again. The language is catchy and involving. The book is easy to read, but it still keeps me company and makes me feel passionate about it every day more and more.I liked the characters very much. They appeared to be loving and of a big heart, loyal and selfless. They teach you by their example to be forgiving and tolerate, to sympathize and support even in the darkest times. They show what it means to love someone unconditionally.Deborah Markus skillfully tangled Emily Dickinson's life and oeuvre into the story providing the heroine with an anchor to hold to while her life's never been ordinary and not without loss. So even the avid fan of the poetess will be intrigued and carried away with little-known facts of her life. So yes, for those of you who want to find a pleasant surprise on the pages of the book, have a nice time and simply enjoy the moment of reading, pay attention to this story. I believe it's exactly what we need from time to time.I want to say thank you, Skyhorse Publishing, for the ARC of this book. I truly enjoyed every page.
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  • Jaymie
    January 1, 1970
    This was not a good fit for me. There wasn't enough suspense throughout the story - only at the end. The first section/"chapter" went on for ages, jumped around in time, and didn't seem to be going anywhere related to the plot of a girl who seems targeted by a murderer killing everyone she gets close to. I was disappointed in this one.
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  • Mandi Schneck
    January 1, 1970
    This book is so unique and different, and I had no idea I would enjoy it as much as I did when I decided to read it. The Letting Go by Deborah Markus is a thought provoking story about a girl who believes she is not allowed to have anyone or anything she loves.Emily is a loner, not because she wants to be, but because she has to be. You see, everyone (and everything-pets included), that she loves, is brutally murdered. Emily has finally figured out the rules: don't get too close to any living th This book is so unique and different, and I had no idea I would enjoy it as much as I did when I decided to read it. The Letting Go by Deborah Markus is a thought provoking story about a girl who believes she is not allowed to have anyone or anything she loves.Emily is a loner, not because she wants to be, but because she has to be. You see, everyone (and everything-pets included), that she loves, is brutally murdered. Emily has finally figured out the rules: don't get too close to any living thing, or if you do they will be killed.Holing herself up in an artistic boarding school, Emily is viciously cruel to everyone that crosses her path. But this is for their own benefit. She doesn't want them to end up like her mother, father, best friend, or dog. At school, Emily focuses on the one thing that she loves that cannot be taken away from her: Emily Dickinson. Emily Dickinson is already dead, and words cannot be killed, so this is the one thing Emily allows herself to embrace and love.But when a dead body turns up on the steps of the boarding school, Emily is convinced that it has to do with her, even though she never knew the dead man. Has she made a mistake? Was she wrong about the rules? And just as this is happening, another girl at the school insists on getting close to Emily at the possible expense of her own life. What can Emily do to stop all the death around her?I loved everything about this book. From the poetry interspersed throughout to Emily's introspective and meticulous thought process, I was captured from the first page. It actually took me a while to get through this read, not because it was dull or boring, but because it made me think so much and I had to keep putting the book down to reflect.I was a huge fan of the lesbian romance in this book, and loved that it was subtle and not at all pushy. This is definitely not a love story, and this element was not the focus of the plot. The twist really got me as well, and normally I can see these things coming from a mile away! Overall, this was a very unusual and unique read that I can definitely see myself revisiting in the future.Overall Rating: 5 out of 5 StarsA huge thanks to Sky Pony Press for an advanced copy of this fantastic read!
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  • Luke Nappa
    January 1, 1970
    Emily Stone's life was chaos. Someone was brutally murdering anyone who got too attached to her. Her life was uprooted after a string of murders and she's been relocated to a boarding school for creative, artistic minds. That was the premise basically laid out in the first few chapters of the book. I was fairly interested at that point, hoping for a fascinating struggle about this girl figuring out who's behind these murders. However, part 1 (Notebook 1) is basically her struggling to stay isola Emily Stone's life was chaos. Someone was brutally murdering anyone who got too attached to her. Her life was uprooted after a string of murders and she's been relocated to a boarding school for creative, artistic minds. That was the premise basically laid out in the first few chapters of the book. I was fairly interested at that point, hoping for a fascinating struggle about this girl figuring out who's behind these murders. However, part 1 (Notebook 1) is basically her struggling to stay isolated after another murder. There's no puzzling, or thrilling endeavors. It doesn't feel like the 'brutal murder' premise that is set up in the very beginning. I followed along for the first half, mainly because I appreciated Emily's character. Nonetheless, part 2 begins and it all went downhill for me. Emily's character development flat-lined. I couldn't follow the broken "chapter" segments, and there was no time allotted for the murder except for a small tangent nearing the end of the book. I found the plot disappointing, and the summary was totally made me expect something different than what I got. Perhaps if the premise had been different, I could've enjoyed the book. But when looking for a murder/thriller, I would like to find a murder/thriller. And I didn't, if that wasn't clear.
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  • Tiffany ✨
    January 1, 1970
    The writing style was meh and none of the characters really blow me away. This book was a real struggle for me to get through because I was really bored. The second half of the book was better but it wasn't enough to keep me interested. Emily was a boring protagonist and her obsession with Emily Dickinson got annoying after a while but what disappointed me the most was the fact that there was no mystery in the book until the very end. The plot twist felt random and had no buildup. The best part The writing style was meh and none of the characters really blow me away. This book was a real struggle for me to get through because I was really bored. The second half of the book was better but it wasn't enough to keep me interested. Emily was a boring protagonist and her obsession with Emily Dickinson got annoying after a while but what disappointed me the most was the fact that there was no mystery in the book until the very end. The plot twist felt random and had no buildup. The best part about the book was Emily's relationship with M. In fact, M was the best part of the novel. Everything else was meh and boring.
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  • Jen
    January 1, 1970
    Emily's mother was murdered when she was young. She's now spending her days in boarding school, focused on her love of Emily Dickinson. She just wants to lose herself in Dickinson's writing and be left alone. But, when a corpse appears on the steps of the school and a new girl insists on becoming Emily's friend, she finds that she can't stay apart any longer.I had a really hard time with this book. Emily was boring and her obsession with Dickinson was annoying. The fact that her family was murde Emily's mother was murdered when she was young. She's now spending her days in boarding school, focused on her love of Emily Dickinson. She just wants to lose herself in Dickinson's writing and be left alone. But, when a corpse appears on the steps of the school and a new girl insists on becoming Emily's friend, she finds that she can't stay apart any longer.I had a really hard time with this book. Emily was boring and her obsession with Dickinson was annoying. The fact that her family was murdered was the most interesting thing about her but it was barely discussed. The plot twist at the end seemed to come out of nowhere and to me felt completely random and tossed in for effect with no build up or back story. Not worth reading.
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  • Jean
    January 1, 1970
    The novel is written as Emily's diary, mostly in little shortish entries that begin with a line of poetry from Emily Dickinson. It can get really broken up, especially as Emily gets more distressed, so it's important to pay attention, but it's always possible to figure things out, even if it takes a little while. I was wondering how the mystery could possibly be resolved, and the suspense is pretty terrific, but it does become clear and has a satisfying conclusion. I thought it all came together The novel is written as Emily's diary, mostly in little shortish entries that begin with a line of poetry from Emily Dickinson. It can get really broken up, especially as Emily gets more distressed, so it's important to pay attention, but it's always possible to figure things out, even if it takes a little while. I was wondering how the mystery could possibly be resolved, and the suspense is pretty terrific, but it does become clear and has a satisfying conclusion. I thought it all came together really well. Markus is also just a good writer -- she's not clichéd or muddled or bland, but clear and thoughtful and just good to read, and the Emily Dickinson obsession is an integral part of the story, not tacked on. YA fans should pay attention.
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  • Jennifer
    January 1, 1970
    I had a real tough time with this book. It took me probably 25-30 pages to realize it was written in diary format, and it was extremely slow to get into otherwise. I was expecting suspense all the way through, and I just didn't get that. I also wish that I knew more about Emily's history from the beginning, because not knowing details made it difficult for me to like her as a character.
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  • LJ
    January 1, 1970
    The ending was a bit anticlimactic but overall it was a good read
  • Elizabeth
    January 1, 1970
    3.5 stars, rounded up.I don't really know what to say about this. I enjoyed it, but I honestly can't say it left a huge impression on me. This book is part murder-mystery and I really didn't feel like that was wrapped up particularly well. The f/f romance (Emily is a lesbian) is okay, but there was something about it that I found kind of lacking; it just didn't have that spark. The whole time reading this I couldn't help but think of that quote from Wide Sargasso Sea : "names are important". Th 3.5 stars, rounded up.I don't really know what to say about this. I enjoyed it, but I honestly can't say it left a huge impression on me. This book is part murder-mystery and I really didn't feel like that was wrapped up particularly well. The f/f romance (Emily is a lesbian) is okay, but there was something about it that I found kind of lacking; it just didn't have that spark. The whole time reading this I couldn't help but think of that quote from Wide Sargasso Sea : "names are important". There was certainly a heavy emphasis on names in this book, what they mean to yourself/others and the power they can have.
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  • Melissa
    January 1, 1970
    Way too much exposition about Emily Dickinson's life, not nearly enough exposition about Emily The Main Character's Life. I think the diary style does this book a great disservice, because we only get to know what our main character feels like writing about and she is certainly not forthcoming. There are odd jumps forward in time with no explanation until later on, and the entire second part is a jumble of several weeks to months worth of memories in no particular order. Getting the happy ending Way too much exposition about Emily Dickinson's life, not nearly enough exposition about Emily The Main Character's Life. I think the diary style does this book a great disservice, because we only get to know what our main character feels like writing about and she is certainly not forthcoming. There are odd jumps forward in time with no explanation until later on, and the entire second part is a jumble of several weeks to months worth of memories in no particular order. Getting the happy ending payoff before the climax completely ruined the end of the book for me. The Big Reveal also was very... not foreshadowed? Out-of-nowhere, hard to believe. Still three stars though, because the romance is sweet and rare, the premise is interesting, and the whole thing has a very gothic, literary style that's pretty nice (it has a very Jane Eyre vibe somehow) and ultimately I did read the whole thing and I only skimmed a little.
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