This is the kind of book that it's hard to rate or value based on the story, characters, and all of the things that you'd normally take into consideration when you review a book. It's a very odd book, especially when compared to normal "young-adult" fare. After all, it's not linear; the beginning is a bit jumbled, and it takes a while for anything to start making sense; there are no overly likable characters (at least, in my opinion); and, a lot of the time, the dialogue and narrator's stream-of-consciousness make it seem like the book is trying too hard, as if the writing came from the script of a Diablo Cody film.
But still, I'm unabashedly giving this book 5 stars. Why? Because it's the kind of book that just scrapes your soul raw and makes you feel something. It's the kind of book that makes you hurt all over. It's the kind of book in which, even if you don't necessarily like the main character, you get her - you've thought the things she's thought and felt the things she's felt, even if only for a brief moment on your darkest day. And yet, no matter how much this book makes you ache, by the end of it you come to realize that no matter how much someone has been through in their life, wonder never truly dies.
All I can say is that [a:Melina Marchetta|47104|Melina Marchetta|https://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/authors/1277655889p2/47104.jpg] is amazing, to be able to evoke these kind of emotions in her readers. Previously, I've only ever read her fantasy stories (The Lumatere Chronicles series, which I loved), and I'm not a huge fan of contemporary stories generally, so I didn't know what to expect going into this read. [b:On the Jellicoe Road|1162022|On the Jellicoe Road|Melina Marchetta|https://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/books/1212708945s/1162022.jpg|6479100] is completely different from The Lumatere Chronicles, in a way that's very impressive - the fact that an author can stretch herself to write books so completely different from each other, and yet are still all brilliant in their own way.
This read will test your patience at times but more importantly, it will test your emotions. And, in the end, that's what's going to stay with you. That's what you're going to remember. That's what you're going to want to never forget, even if you somehow could.