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Review: Aftercare Instructions

Bonnie Pipkin - Aftercare Instructions
Published: June 27, 2017 by Flatiron Books
Genres: Contemporary, Realistic Fiction, Young Adult
Pages: 265
Source: Goodreads
Find on: Amazon, Book Depository, Goodreads
Rating: 5/5 πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰

In the tradition of Jandy Nelson and Rainbow Rowell, a big-hearted journey of furious friendship, crazy love, and unexpected hope after a teen's decision to end an unwanted pregnancy

“Troubled.” That’s seventeen-year-old Genesis according to her small New Jersey town. She finds refuge and stability in her relationship with her boyfriend, Peter—until he abandons her at a Planned Parenthood clinic during their appointment to terminate an unwanted pregnancy. The betrayal causes Gen to question everything.

As Gen pushes herself forward to find her new identity without Peter, she must also confront her most painful memories. Through the lens of an ongoing four act play within the novel, the fantasy of their undying love unravels line by line, scene by scene. Digging deeper into her past while exploring the underground theater world of New York City, she rediscovers a long-forgotten dream. But it’s when Gen lets go of her history, the one she thinks she knows, that she’s finally able to embrace the complicated, chaotic true story of her life, and take center stage.

This powerfully immersive and format-crushing debut follows Gen from dorm rooms to diners to house parties to auditions—and ultimately, right into readers’ hearts.

The Thing I Wish I'd Known
  • I love you doesn't come with any guarantees. 
I just decided to go right ahead and give this book: the Treasured Five-Star. Pause for effect. It. Is. That. Fantastic. The MC, Genesis, is from Jersey (yes!!!!) and she loves New York, but doesn't know how to navigate herself too well through that fancy-schmancy state. Yeah, Genesis is me.

Genesis decides to go to a Planned Parenthood in NYC, just to avoid any Jerseyian townspeople, but what she doesn't expect is her boyfriend, Peter, leaving her on the spot. At the clinic. After she does, she finds her drifting, struggling to figure out, singlehandedly, why her boyfriend fled in fear of religious, familial wrath.

If you completely disregard the occasional cameo appearances from Peter, the book is so gorgeous and wonderful and peaceful - well, maybe not, peaceful - and romantic and there's great food and it's just GREAT. I adored it, truly.
But I keep crying. Crying crying crying until there's no water left. And then I swear I'm crying air. Until there isn't any air. Whywhywhywhywhywhywhy?

I'm NOT fine.

I'm not fucking fine.



The ending was beautiful and promising, and yay for no more Peter, and I'm hoping for That Romantic Reconciliation. And truly truly truly, this book is so quotable. There were so many quotes, I wanted to tear from the copy and post here, but that would be very mean and very spoilery. It's so brilliant. It's written in that messy way of someone who is grieving themselves and their relationship, just all-around, uncomfortable, gutsy honesty.
1. You don't see eye to eye anymore.
Did I see them too?
2. You want different things from the future.
If there were signs, why do I want him so bad it hurts?
3. You've become codependent.
I call back.
4. You've started fantastizing about other people.
And it rings and rings.
5. The quirks that used to be cute are now annoying.
I call back again.
6. You aren't happy.


  1. I love it when lots of quotes really resonate with you in a book! Lovely review!

    Jeann @ Happy Indulgence

    1. Thank you so much, Jeann! YES, I seriously loved all of these quotes.

  2. Oh wow!!! I was thinking of starting this last night, but then I didn't because I was thinking that I hadn't really heard much about it-- but now I think I definitely should push it to the front. I think I'll be reading it next :)

    1. It's truly such a wonderful debut!! I was stunned and it's written in that messy, teenager voice. I'll totally be anticipating your review in the meantime!


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