Cover Image: Out of Love

Out of Love

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Member Reviews

Como vocês já sabem, essa resenha é em parceria com a Random House Internacional, de quem recebemos esse eARC (Advance reading copy: algo como “uma cópia de leitura avançada, ou seja, o livro ainda pode sofrer alterações antes de ser publicado). Também lembrando que essa resenha terá um formato diferente: por ser um ARC, não haverão quotes, já como os livros podem sofrer mudanças em seu texto antes de serem comercializados. Gostaríamos de agradecer profundamente a Editora pela oportunidade de parceria.

Geralmente quando nós pegamos um livro de romance, eles funcionam mostrando para a gente o início daquele relacionamento e dali ele tem dois pontos: ou o relacionamento segue firme e forte até o final, ou então termina e o casal fica separado no final, sendo assim um drama, tenho certeza que todos aqui já pegaram pelo menos um dos dois.

Mas não é assim com “Out of Love”. Nesse livro, ele começa no ponto final do relacionamento entre a personagem principal e seu (agora) ex: Theo. Muito tempo atrás eu li um livro que me lembrou bastante esse ponto que é “Por isso a gente acabou”, que começa no final do relacionamento e durante todo o livro nós passamos pelas pontuações do que levou ao final, mas mais uma vez surpreendendo, não é assim que Out of Love trata o final deles.

Nós começamos o livro exatamente no fim: Theo está no apartamento da personagem principal – a qual nunca ficamos sabendo o nome – para pegar o que resta de suas coisas lá: algumas roupas e itens para que ele possa sair de vez da vida dela depois do término gradual que eles dois tiveram em um relacionamento que durou anos. E dali, nós vamos voltando aos poucos: nós vemos tudo pelo ponto de vista da nossa protagonista, nos mostrando fragmentos aos poucos: os dias depois do pedido de “tempo” de Theo enquanto ela se dava conta de que o relacionamento deles tinha acabado realmente.

E então voltamos mais um pouco para a briga que culminou o pedido de tempo da parte dele e assim sucessivamente, vamos voltando aos poucos, cada vez mais, até chegar no primeiro encontro do casal e é aí que o livro termina.

Eu confesso que fiquei um pouco surpresa não só com a forma do livro, porque bem, como eu disse, estamos sempre acostumados com um livro que mostra um começo de um relacionamento, um meio, um fim. Necessariamente nessa ordem. E, geralmente quando começa com um final, é porque a personagem irá encontrar outra pessoa para amar no caminho e tudo aquilo que ela sofre no início será uma lembrança dolorida – mas que ao mesmo tempo ensinou a ela o que ela precisava aprender.

Não que “Out of Love” deixe isso falho: conforme vamos voltando nas memórias da protagonista, nós – e ela, aprendemos bastante com tudo que aconteceu durante aquele tempo que eles estavam juntos, tanto as coisas boas quanto as coisas ruins.

Esse livro causou uma impressão bem grande em mim, não só pela forma como foi tratado, mas também pelo jeito agridoce com que todo o tema foi tratado. Eu até comentei com a Vi enquanto lia que eu já tinha marcado tantas frases nesse livro que até perdi a conta – e eu fico bem triste de não poder compartilhar elas com vocês.

Infelizmente eu não sei de notícia nenhuma sobre esse livro vindo para o Brasil, mas eu estou torcendo e vou começar uma campanha para que venha, porque eu acho que todo mundo precisa ler esse livro que é tão bom – ao mesmo tempo em que ele dói, ele é bem real. É como a vida funciona: nem tudo é sempre bom, nem tudo que já foi bom um dia dura para sempre e que, mesmo que um dia uma pessoa tenha sido boa pra gente, às vezes ela deixa de ser e o melhor é se afastar e guardar tudo numa caixinha como uma boa lembrança de um passado que pode não ter sido perfeito, mas que era o que precisávamos naquele momento.

Eu gostaria apenas de deixar aqui marcado também que eu não pude deixar de dar uma pequena risada com a biografia da autora, a Hazel, porque ela era escritora de terror e quando perguntaram para ela porque queria mudar o terror pelo romance, ela disse que é porque não existe nada mais assustador do que amar. E, bem, errada ela não está!

Thanks for the free book, Penguin Random House International.
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I really enjoyed this heartbreaking, yet still heartwarming love story in reverse. The story starts with the end of a relationship and goes backward from there, ending with the two main characters’ first meeting. It’s such an intriguing way to get to know these characters and experience their story. While it is bittersweet, knowing how the relationship ends before it begins, it’s such a compelling framework that I still felt invested throughout and especially enjoyed seeing the growth (in reverse!) of the unnamed main character.
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I had mixed feelings reading this book. At the start, it appears a relationship is ending, sadly for one and not sadly at all for the other partner. Then it felt like all the chapters were written and thrown into a pile, then randomly pulled out one at a time and put into the book without regard for timing. Then it would seem to progress in one direction only to be suddenly in the past, but not knowing is this a past event or are they together again? It was really annoying to me for part of the time until I gave up my wish for it to be chronological, which is not what the author appeared to want.

Both of the partners have past issues that influence the story, but then, don't we all? Lucky for most of us that we can get past the issues, but not all people can.

Overall, it seemed too drawn out, but then that is what real life feels like so I guess I can't make that a criticism. 3 stars at the most. Thank you NetGalley for an advance reader copy in exchange for an honest opinion.
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I read Out of Love in one sitting last week and I adored it.  Out of Love begins at the end of a relationship and follows the parting of our unnamed protagonist and her boyfriend, Theo.  It goes in reverse, recounting events in relationship until the end of the book when she and Theo meet. (But go back and read the first chapter when it’s over to get the full experience.)

This was unlike any novel I’ve read previously in the pacing and the way it was written.  It was real and raw, an emotional love story that deals with anxiety and mental health.  Despite knowing the ending, I couldn’t help wishing for a magical change in the outcome as I read through to when they met.  The characterizations were honest and beautiful and the writing was magical.  I can’t wait for more from this author!
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This book caught my eye with comparisons to One Day, which was a book I read years ago and loved. But… hmm… file this one as yet another September Reads That Didn’t Wow Me. I think mostly because it was a little depressing to read a book about the unravelling of a relationship. It’s sad and bittersweet.  However, I did like it that it was very honest, and the representation and normalizing of mental illness. I even liked how Maya was from Ireland, and Theo was from England and the nuances of how that played out in their relationship. That was fascinating for me, as a Canadian, to get that insight. I think fans of Sally Rooney will want to give this book a shot. It's well-developed and thoughtful, but was just a bit more of a bittersweet read than I was looking for.
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"You can't fail at a relationship. That's like getting off of a roller coaster and saying you failed because the ride is over. Things end. That doesn't mean the experience wasn't worth it."

Out of Love is written in the first person narrative through the perspective of an unnamed female protagonist and it is told as a love story in reverse. The story begins with the breakup and each chapter goes deeper into the past, weaving together pivotal moments of the protagonist's life and her relationship with Theo. The last chapter is our protagonist meeting Theo and ends with a magical first kiss that leaves you full of optimism for a relationship we already know is doomed to fail. 

I absolutely LOVED this book. Hayes produces such a raw narrative that completely shattered my world. If I had to describe Out of Love in one word: Bittersweet. I immediately hated Theo at the beginning because of course I'm rooting for the protagonist, that's simply how first person POV works. But as each chapter unfolds and the reader is given the building blocks of why this relationship didn't work out, your view drastically shifts. Hayes nailed the execution and it really made for such a meaningful story. I thought at first, well who cares how they meet if we know they don't end up together? Me. I totally cared. This book is all about the journey. I've read parallel timelines and enjoyed them but never a book like this with one plot strictly on the reverse timeline and wow, it works. Instead of tearing up at the sad bits during the beginning when I wasn't yet invested in the couple, I cried during the happy parts and when they were both so clearly in love. Everything about this is poetically tragic and I am not lying when I say I seriously sobbed towards the end of the book. It's such a poignant, beautifully written story with a focus on mental health, self love, friendship, and family. I almost want to reread it backwards now. Highly, highly recommend.
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Sometimes you just need a love story, and Out of Love is perfect in every way ❤️

As you might be able to guess from the title, this isn’t as much a falling in love story as it is a falling out of love story, but in a completely unique and interesting way. 

Hazel Hayes’ Out of Love begins with a breakup and then moves back in time, showing the progression of a relationship in reverse, layering on details and building the story of a couple whose relationship is failing. 

Going into Out of Love, I wondered if it would maintain my interest. After all, I know there’s a breakup. There’s nothing else to learn, right? Wrong, because, as I learned the details of the failing relationship and began to know the characters, I fell a little bit in love with them myself.

Thank you so much for the opportunity to read early and review! Link to my Instagram post: https://www.instagram.com/p/CUVa6GTLH1W/
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What a way to give a happy ending to a very melancholic story. Inventive. Also, everyone in the world needs a Maya.
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I tried read this one, but I couldn't get into it. I felt that the main characters were a bit too immature for my taste
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What a deeply creative debut! Telling a story in reverse is a such an interesting take on a love/romance plot. Hazel has a gift for moving story telling and character building. I can't wait to read more from her in the future. I was actually candidly really surprised how much this book touched me, such a pleasant surprise. Thank you so much for a chance to read it. 

"I want you to know how much I love you and appreciate you. I love you so fucking much that... it's not very nice sometimes. It's horrible, actually. I think about losing you and it's like someone's standing on my chest. You could break me. If you wanted to. You could absolutely fucking break me."
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We enter this story with an unnamed heroine. She's heartbroken when her ex of many years comes to their home to retrieve his stuff. He's recently asked for a "Break" but decides its time to make it long term. From there we move in reverse to reveal how we got here. I read this book so fast! I loved the premise of this book, a love story in reverse. This book was jam packed with drama and heartbreak, but also with the unique suspense of how they fell in love. The plot was full of substance and some heavy topics; mental health, LGBTQIA, miscarriages, and previous relationship abuse are just scratching the surface. But Hazel Hayes does an excellent job approaching them and making it not too intense or depressing. I loved the main characters support system her best friend Maya and her mother are great supportive secondary characters. They both play big parts of the story while not overpowering the main character.
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While the concept for Out of Love -- a love story told in reverse -- is clever enough, its execution makes for a flat, depressing narrative centered around an unnamed protagonist I never connected with. Like Dolly Alderton's Ghosts, Out of Love banks on readers caring about heartbreak by nature of its existence, rather than composing compelling portraits of well-rounded, authentic people trying and failing to find love. The proof is in the pudding: the protagonist has no name. Rather than being emblematic of her unformed identity or everywoman representation, this instead illustrates the story's fundamental lack of character-driven conflict. How can a story about a breakup not be driven by character? When it's driven by the portrayal of stereotypes, generic situational tension, and trauma.

TW: depression, suicidal ideation, alcoholism, dubious consent, domestic abuse, child abuse, sexual abuse, miscarriage
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I may be biased as I have been a fan of Hazel Hayes for ages and have admired her screenwriting work for years. When she first announced that she was writing a novel I was thrilled, and getting the chance to review the US edition coming out later this month was really just the cherry on top!

The story is told from the perspective of our unnamed heroine, who for the sake of clarity I’ll call “Angel”--a pet name from her partner Theo. She’s flawed and messy and real and I love her. I can only hope to  have the strength she displays in the opening chapter. Theo, Maya, and the rest of the cast of characters are equally well-rounded and fully realized. Hayes made me appreciate the people who have played those roles in my own life even more.

I particularly enjoyed the structure of this book! Telling the story in reverse order really served to highlight our need to look back and try to find where things fell apart--and by extension, the “why”. But beyond that, Hazel tells us that there isn’t always a simple, definitive answer to “the why”---that life is equally messy and that with each new relationship we forge we carry our past. At one point “Angel” wonders if we may even carry our parents’ past too, but Hayes also tells us that it’s our responsibility to work on ourselves and not let any of that potential baggage be an excuse, inherited or not.

Hayes wrote a couple of new chapters for this new edition and I was curious to see how it changed the story for me, given how complete the previous edition felt. I’m happy to report that each of these additions really adds to the narrative in their own way, giving us better insight into “Angel’s” headspace, the depth of her relationship with Maya, and proof that Theo was genuinely lovely to her beyond the very beginning. I was a little surprised by “Between the Sheets” being in rhyme, but it weirdly works for me. 

I read this compulsively the first time I picked it up and this time around was no exception. It made me laugh and cry in turns and I cannot recommend it highly enough! It comes out September 28th so go pre-order it now!

Star Rating : 9.5/10
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An immersive, highly creative story about love, loss, and answering the inevitable question of whether love is worth it or not.

In this incredibly written novel, we meet an unnamed protagonist who is utterly heartbroken while packing her ex-boyfriends belongings from their shared flat. As he comes to collect his things, we move back in time to experience their love from their break up all the way back to very first magical evening they met. 

Hazel’s writing reminds me so much of a combination of Sally Rooney and Dolly Alderton. Their ability to make you feel every emotion their character is feeling, and weaving a story with such intellect, wit, and emotion. Never shying away from sharing the realities and difficulties of mental illness and navigating life after trauma. 

Thank you to NetGalley for an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.
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Our dear, sweet unnamed broken hearted protagonist. Theo is the WORST.

A love story, told in reverse - and traces the relationships ups and more often, the downs. There's quite a bit about depression, anxiety and grief involved and it is a bit hard to take, to be perfectly honest.

There's an honesty to our main girl, an openness, a freedom. Her openness about sexuality was refreshing and something you don't typically you see in books of this nature.

This is a lovely concept of a book. I think that it will take readers a bit to get into - they need to get past Theo being the absolute WORST and just ...find the beauty.

Thanks to NetGalley and the publishers for the opportunity to read and review this book.
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I loved Hazel Hayes writing. Reading her book felt like having a conversation with a friend, and I will definitely be reading more of her work in the future. And while I think this was a unique idea, the execution just didn't work for me. Knowing the outcome of their relationship from the get-go left me feeling underwhelmed when the story was over. I did get emotional a few times, but the overall effect was lost on me.
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In the About the Author section, it says Hazel Hayes made the switch from horror to romance because there is “nothing more horrific than love.” That perfectly encapsulates this emotional novel. 

This story traces a couple’s relationship backwards from its heart-wrenching end to its bright and hopeful beginning. The unnamed protagonist is expecting her ex, Theo, to pick up the remainder of his possessions while she contemplates how their once love-filled romance came to this cold and tragic split. She can pinpoint the exact moments when her partner fell in and out of love with her. 

There are conversations on mental health, including depression, anxiety, panic attacks, trauma, and ptsd. There are also discussions on race, sexuality and what it was like for our left-leaning character to date someone whose family has conservative views. 

I loved the main character’s mom, she would literally drop everything at a moment’s notice and fly on a plane to support her daughter in any way that she could. And the MC’s friend, Maya, everyone needs a friend like her. 

This definitely broke my cold black heart and then jaggedly stitched it back together. I look forward to more from the author and will gobble up anything else that Hazel Hayes chooses to write. 

CW: suicide ideation and non-descriptive sexual assault. 

Thank you to Penguin Group Dutton for the ARC provided via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
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A relationship ends; its story is told in reverse.  This was a creative approach to a romance unraveling that I felt was successful in trying to understand what went wrong.

It was well written and poignant, with a realistic examination of family, damaged psyches, and people trying to make their way in the world.  At times, near the end (which was the beginning of the relationship!), it did drag a bit, but overall a decent read.
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Out of Love is a bittersweet story about finding and losing love, told in reverse. We start with their messy breakup and move backward through their relationship, seeing how it fell apart, and then how it began. This is an unusual structure, but a very interesting one, as each chapter gradually sheds light on the future we’ve already seen, and places into context the chapters we’ve already read, slowly building to the full picture. We see all the ways this couple was bad for each other, but also all the ways they were good for each other, and the ways in which they grew as a result of their relationship, even though it ended badly. 

As the book goes on, each chapter takes place further in the past, and that’s easy to track. But some chapters switch back and forth from the present to various flashbacks within the same rough time period, and the timeline within those flashbacks is harder to track. You really have to pay close attention to what’s written in present tense and what’s in past tense, as sometimes that’s the only indication as to whether we’re really in the present or not. But that’s a very minor complaint. Overall, the writing is gorgeous and really well done. 

The book also takes a stark look at mental illness, as the narrator suffers from depression and anxiety. It does a good job of showing how depression never completely goes away, even when life is good, even when you “have nothing to be depressed about.” Depression doesn’t need a reason. It insinuates itself into the dark spaces in your life and burrows in, and it is always waiting. It dulls the shine of the good times and makes the bad times so much worse. We watch as the narrator has both good days and bad, frequently doubts herself, and has some very dark moments, but when we take a look at the story as a whole we see that in the end (beginning) she persists, she survives, and she has hope. I feel like that kind of story, and that kind of honest look at depression and anxiety (with a hopeful ending) is very important to portray. 

Representation: Bisexual main character, Black side character, mentally ill main character 

TW: depression, suicidal ideation, alcoholism, sexual situations with dubious consent, past domestic abuse, past child abuse, past sexual abuse, miscarriage
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What a debut novel by Hazel Hayes! A love story told in reverse, Out of Love charts the relationship of our unnamed protagonist with a man named Theo. 
This was so lovely; I’ve watched Hazel on YouTube for years now I’ve admired her work forever. I’ve been itching to read this since she first announced it like 2 years ago now? I think because I’m so familiar with Hazel’s work, her voice as a writer felt so familiar and so comforting to read, even as the characters are going through really tough times. It was so funny to read lines that I recognize from her like “dizzying heights” and “tactical chunder”. You also get the sense while reading of what this did for the writer, it feels like we’re being allowed a glimpse at something so personal and heartfelt, it’s really moving. Highly recommend (and pro tip: reread the first chapter right when you finish, it really rounds out the experience)
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