Review: Love Letters To The Dead by Ava Dellaira

Title: Love Letters to the Dead
Author: Ava Dellaira
Publication: April 1st 2014 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
Genre: YA Contemporary
Source: Owned

It begins as an assignment for English class: Write a letter to a dead person.

Laurel chooses Kurt Cobain because her sister, May, loved him. And he died young, just like May. Soon, Laurel has a notebook full of letters to the dead—to people like Janis Joplin, Heath Ledger, Amelia Earhart, and Amy Winehouse—though she never gives a single one of them to her teacher. She writes about starting high school, navigating the choppy waters of new friendships, learning to live with her splintering family, falling in love for the first time, and, most important, trying to grieve for May. But how do you mourn for someone you haven't forgiven?

It's not until Laurel has written the truth about what happened to herself that she can finally accept what happened to May. And only when Laurel has begun to see her sister as the person she was—lovely and amazing and deeply flawed—can she truly start to discover her own path.

In a voice that's as lyrical and as true as a favorite song, Ava Dellaira writes about one girl's journey through life's challenges with a haunting and often heartbreaking beauty. 

-- My Rating --
4/5 Oscars: Really Liked It

-- My Thoughts --

     I've heard a LOT about this book from the blogging world, recently. And in reading, I'm definitely a follower of the pack. I wanted to know what was all the buzz about, and yes, they were right.
     Laurel doesn't know how to cope with the tragedy in her life. And now that she's starting high school, it's even harder. But then her teacher assigns them a homework. They have to write a letter to a dead person. But once Laurel starts writing letters, she doesn't stop. She can't stop. They're finally holding her up.
     What I loved most about this book is the whole idea of it. Writing letters to dead people and coping with tragedy through that. It's such a beautiful idea and I am so impressed that the author thought of it this way. Then, the writing style is fabulous. I cannot believe this is the author's debut novel, because she sounds like an experienced writer through her writings. She makes the characters come out of the pages.

Sometimes when we say things, we hear silence. Or only echoes. Like screaming from inside. And that's really lonely. But that only happens when we weren't really listening. It means we weren't ready to listen yet. Because every time we speak, there is a voice. There is the world that answers back...

     Laurel is a shy, insecure, and sad young girl. You can feel every emotion she's feeling through her letters. On top of that, she's also really smart. It shows through her writings and you fall in love with her immediately. Then, we  have the love interest, Sky. Although I didn't like him a lot, he's good for Laurel and I liked them together. But otherwise, he's really not my kind of book-boyfriends.Too unbelievable.
     The letters are amazing. Since this book is told in letters throughout, I loved the references to the people that Laurel is writing to. I admit that I learned a lot from her references. There's Kurt Cobain, Judy Garland, Elizabeth Bishop, Amelia Earhart, River Phoenix, Janis Joplin, Amy Winehouse, Allan Lane, E. E. Cummings, and many others. So many different people, but Laurel feels connected to them somehow. Then, there's the reference to all the different music in this book. I loved that. I loved how Laurel felt connected to different musicians and singers, also different poetesses.  It was all beautiful.
     All in all, I LOVED this book. I loved what it offered and what it had in it. This is not just a love story. This is a story about love,redemption, about finding your true self, and finally coping with the truth of the world. Finding the beauty in things.


  1. I'm definitely sort of, kind of, hating on you right now. LOL. This book has been on my to-read list since I first saw it on my news feed on Goodreads. (You're not the only follower on this one.) I really like that the author was able to communicate her emotions through these letters. I like the whole assignment too. All in all, it seems like a cute/deep read.

    I'm glad you liked Love Letters to the Dead. Great Review, Soma!
    Thanks for stopping by Characterized.

    1. Don't hate on me ! Lol!
      It's a really good book.
      Thanks for stopping by, doll!

  2. I've heard really great things about this one Soma, I'm so glad to know you enjoyed it as well. I love the premise and the format, I definitely want to read some of her letters! Looking forward to picking this up, lovely review!

  3. I NEED to read this! I was a huge fan of Jenny Han's summer trilogy and I have no doubt that I'll love this book, too. The whole idea of the book sounds great AND the cover is gorgeous, always a plus! ;)

    Fantastic review! <3

  4. This is one that I've also heard great things about, and I really need to get around to it soon. Great review!

  5. Looking forward on reading this one!

  6. Your blog is very nice,Thanks for sharing.



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