Every Last Word

Every Last Word

Hardcover | June 16, 2015

byTamara Ireland Stone

not yet rated|write a review
ANew York TimesBest SellerIf you could read my mind, you wouldn't be smiling.

Samantha McAllister looks just like the rest of the popular girls in her junior class. But hidden beneath the straightened hair and expertly applied makeup is a secret that her friends would never understand: Sam has Purely-Obsessional OCD and is consumed by a stream of dark thoughts and worries that she can't turn off.

Second-guessing every move, thought, and word makes daily life a struggle, and it doesn't help that her lifelong friends will turn toxic at the first sign of a wrong outfit, wrong lunch, or wrong crush. Yet Sam knows she'd be truly crazy to leave the protection of the most popular girls in school. So when Sam meets Caroline, she has to keep her new friend with a refreshing sense of humor and no style a secret, right up there with Sam's weekly visits to her psychiatrist.

Caroline introduces Sam to Poet's Corner, a hidden room and a tight-knit group of misfits who have been ignored by the school at large. Sam is drawn to them immediately, especially a guitar-playing guy with a talent for verse, and starts to discover a whole new side of herself. Slowly, she begins to feel more "normal" than she ever has as part of the popular crowd . . . until she finds a new reason to question her sanity and all she holds dear.

"CluelessmeetsDead Poets Societywith a whopping final twist." -Kirkus Reviews
"This book is highly recommended-readers will connect with Sam, relating to her anxiety about her peers, and root for her throughout the book." -VOYA

"A thoughtful romance with a strong message about self-acceptance, [this] sensitive novel boasts strong characterizations and conflicts that many teens will relate to. Eminently readable." -Booklist

"A brilliant and moving story about finding your voice, the power of words, and true friendship. I couldn't put it down " -Elizabeth Eulberg, Author ofThe Lonely Hearts Club

"Brilliant, brave, and beautiful." -Kathleen Caldwell, A Great Good Place for Books

"A riveting story of love, true friendship, self-doubt and self-confidence, overcoming obstacles, and truly finding oneself." -Melanie Koss, Professor of Young Adult Literature, Northern Illinois University

"Romantic, unpredictable, relatable, and so very enjoyable." -Arnold Shapiro, Oscar- and Emmy-winning Producer

"Characters to love and a story to break your heart. Readers will want to turn page after page and read every last word. Then do it all over again." -Marianne Follis, Teen Librarian, Valley Ranch (Irving) Public Library

Pricing and Purchase Info

$17.50 online
$18.99 list price (save 7%)
In stock online
Ships free on orders over $25
Prices may vary. why?
Please call ahead to confirm inventory.

Every Last Word

Hardcover | June 16, 2015
In stock online Available in stores
$17.50 online $18.99 (save 7%)

From the Publisher

ANew York TimesBest SellerIf you could read my mind, you wouldn't be smiling.Samantha McAllister looks just like the rest of the popular girls in her junior class. But hidden beneath the straightened hair and expertly applied makeup is a secret that her friends would never understand: Sam has Purely-Obsessional OCD and is consumed by a...

Tamara Ireland Stone (www.TamaraIrelandStone.com) is the author ofTime After TimeandTime Between Us, which Melissa Marr praised as a "beautifully written, unique love story," and has been published in over twenty countries. A former Silicon Valley marketing executive, Tamara enjoys skiing, hiking, and spending time with her husband and...

other books by Tamara Ireland Stone

Time Between Us
Time Between Us

Paperback|Sep 3 2013

$10.95 online$10.99list price
Time After Time
Time After Time

Paperback|Oct 14 2014

$9.17 online$10.99list price(save 16%)
see all books by Tamara Ireland Stone
Format:HardcoverDimensions:368 pages, 8.5 × 5.88 × 1.25 inPublished:June 16, 2015Publisher:Disney-HyperionLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1484705270

ISBN - 13:9781484705278

Customer Reviews of Every Last Word


Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it! It made be cry. But have me eyes into a mind I would never have experienced on my own!
Date published: 2016-11-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Give me words... I am having difficulty finding the words to help me describe this book. I had some expectations for this book, the synopsis seemed intriguing, and although it did not live up to those expectations it definitely did not disappoint either. I guess to sum up my reaction and review for this book, I will leave you with three letters: W O W
Date published: 2016-11-17
Rated 4 out of 5 by from It was an amazing perspective! I honestly really enjoyed it. It had quite a twist at the end, where you sort of question the story. In all honesty, it made it 100% better. I took psychology, and I love looking into the perspective of someone with a mental illness, it's extremely intriguing and she did a wonderful job at it!
Date published: 2016-11-16
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wonderful story It was such a beautiful story and wonderfully writeen. All characters were so mature and felt real. I thought it was just going to be about Sam overcoming her OCD, but NO. Something happens in this story and you'll be surprised. I was so shocked when it happened. It's one of those books that will make you feel better. I was so happy after I finished this book.
Date published: 2016-11-04
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A refreshing contemporary read. I remember seeing Every Last Word on a couple of “Most Anticipated New Releases of 2015″ lists earlier this year and what grabbed my attention about it at first was the simple and beautiful front cover. I became even more intrigued after I read the synopsis. I tend to browse through NetGalley every once in a while and as soon as I noticed Every Last Word I immediately submitted a request. Of course, not every request you make will be accepted so I was extremely excited and happy as my request had been approved making it my first approval through NetGalley! Surely there have been many young adult novels that deal with teenagers and a variety of mental illnesses, but it seems as though stories of this nature are becoming more popular and talked about recently. I think that this is something that is extremely positive and beneficial, with teenagers especially. There are many novels being released lately that a lot of people are able to relate to on a personal level and I think that Every Last Word is going to be added to that list for many readers. In this case, our main character and narrator Samantha, has had to deal with her OCD diagnosis ever since she was eleven years old. She starts out as being very insecure about herself, but with the help of her new and secret friend Caroline, she begins to break out of her shell. Caroline is carefree and down to earth and she possesses a lot of personality attributes that Sam wishes she had. I loved the character of Caroline for many reasons and she complimented Sam in ways you will only understand by reading this story. Caroline must be kept a secret as Samantha is part of a popular friend circle nicknamed the Crazy 8s that she has been friends with since they were all in kindergarten. The Eights can be cruel at times and Samantha feels that due to Caroline’s lack of popularity, they wouldn’t be keen on adding her to their circle. Also, because of Sam’s fear of being kicked out of her group of friends, the Eight’s also have no clue about Sam’s OCD diagnosis. The Eights were the characters that I disliked the most. They were constantly bringing Sam down and the fact that Sam couldn’t see it was extremely frustrating. Sam is later introduced into Poet’s Corner, a secret poetry club that is known only to a few select students. It is here that we meet A.J., a boy that instantly intrigues Sam. A.J. was very well written and I liked his interactions with Sam and the rest of Poet’s Corner and I feel as though the reader gets to learn a lot about his past and what brought him to Poet’s Corner. It is in this secret poetry club where we are introduced to some other minor characters such as Sydney, Emily and Cameron. I really liked the addition of these other characters but I really do wish that we got to learn a little bit more about them. The moments in the story that involved Poet’s Corner gave off a Dead Poets Society vibe. The only thing that was missing was a charming and eccentric professor. There were a lot of elements that were very similar to the film, but it also had it’s fair share of differences. It felt more like an homage and that it was inspired by the film rather than a direct copy. There were elements to this story that were very unexpected and surprising that I personally did not see coming. I can’t even talk about it because that would spoil it for everyone. What started out as something that felt familiar and a little recycled ended up catching me completely off guard. Rather than just having these characters be a part of a Poetry Club and taking the easy way out by just explaining that they were reading their poems to one another, they were actually written out for the reader to enjoy. I really liked that aspect of this novel and I think it definitely showed the author’s commitment to this story. Overall, I think a lot of people are going to really enjoy this book and are going to be able to relate to at least one, if not many, of the very relatable characters.
Date published: 2015-11-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Thoughtful, deeply poignant tale of first love and a girl trying to make the best out of her life Every Last Word begins with an anxiety attack - Samantha McCallister’s. Sam has been diagnosed with Purely Obsessional OCD, meaning that she often gets into thought cycles that spiral and spiral and she can’t get out of it. At the beginning of the book, we find out that she’s on medication and has had weekly therapy sessions with a psychiatrist for years, but her best friends, the Eights - the most popular girls in school - don’t know about her mental illness, and she’s determined to keep it that way. Everything changes when Sam meets Caroline, a nearby locker mate who seems to really get Sam and helps her open up. Caroline introduces Sam to a secret poetry group, and slowly, Sam begins to find the words to quiet her mind more. The story perfectly balanced Samantha’s OCD with her poetry, her friendships with the poets, her budding romance, and her cycle of bad friendship. I read some reviews that said that there was too much going on. Not for me - this book felt so truthful to the number of things I had to balance as a teenager (school and extra-curriculars and good and bad friendships and unrequited crushes and outside interests…). There was never a moment when I just wanted to know more about another part of Samantha’s life because I was so invested in the entire thing. The depiction of toxic friendships. This was a big one that elevated this book from good to great for me. Samantha has the feeling that she’s trapped in this friendship with her popular, manipulative best friends - but she can’t leave them because, as she says, “I don’t have anyplace else to go.” That line really spoke to me, and the rest of the book encapsulated so well my own toxic friendships and just how hard it was - and is - to let go of them. Finally, the depiction of Samantha’s struggle with her own mind in ELW was BRILLIANTLY done, and, as I mentioned, seamlessly woven into the narrative. Samantha’s OCD is just a part of her , and what’s great is that it doesn’t feel weird at all being in her brain. I was just as frustrated and fascinated as she was by her obsession with threes, her occasional spirals into research, her compulsion to do things just so. It’s her normal, and it made her special. Bonuses: Heart-Squeezing Romance: I swooned so damn hard for Samantha and her love interest (no, I’m not going to tell you who it is, but you’ll guess). We’re talking EXTREME swoons, reading back romantic passages, wanting to hug and kiss my own husband because OMG SO MUCH ADORABLE FIRST LOVE. Very Real High School Poetry: As a Lit major, I found the words of the Poet’s Corner writers a bit simplistic, but also VERY TRUE to the type of poetry I was writing and reading when I was in high school and editing my HS literary magazine. Also, who doesn't want to be in a secret poetry group?! Why didn't I have one of these? Emotional Writing: Tamara Ireland Stone has an incredible ability to make her characters voices deeply personal and deeply compelling. Her writing gets to the heart of the character, and with Sam, I was immediately captivated. The Final Word: Guys, indulge my soapbox for a moment: I hate the term #sicklit or just the idea of Important Books. To me, a book is important if it speaks to you, and it’s truthful about what characters are experiencing, whether it’s about faeries or vampires or paranormal warthogs or a girl struggling with her identity. Every Last Word is a great book. Don’t judge it by the fact that the main character has OCD. Or that it’s supposed to be important or talk about some issue. This is, at its heart, a YA book about a girl who is lonely and struggling to figure out who she is. A girl who is, like many of us, trying to be the best version of herself, and make positive changes in her life. Read it, love it, swoon with Sam, and believe in the power of words and friends to make your life better.
Date published: 2015-06-23

Extra Content

Editorial Reviews


"A compelling story of love, fate, and consequences with plenty of sigh-worthy moments, this novel is the perfect choice for readers who want a romance that leaves them with something to think about when it's over."-Bulletin of the Center for Children?s Books