All of the Rogers by Erin Lockwood

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My alarm goes off at four am. It takes an hour to get to the studio, and then my ballet training begins. I go to school for a few hours, and then it’s back to the studio for more training. Go to bed. Repeat the whole process the next day.

I hate it.

My time at school is a blur, except for biology. I don’t rush through that class, because I get to see Roger Byrnes. He probably doesn’t even know I exist, but my heart beats a little faster when I see him walk through the classroom door with his messy hair and carefree attitude. He has so much energy. But then he stares off into the distance, and I wonder what he’s thinking. It’s the highlight of my day.
I wish I could quit ballet so I could be a normal teenager. Someone who Roger would want to be with. I could use some excitement in my life…I bet Roger could give that to me.

This book did me in! The emotions I had while reading All Of The Rogers had me feeling like I was on an emotional roller coaster. The ups, downs, happy, sad, worried and broken. Taking us back to high school, the setting Erin portrays takes us into real life struggles that teenagers deal with everyday. The relationships with peers, parents and teachers, as well as the drama that comes with each of these topics.

“I want to be a normal teenager. I just have no idea how. This isn’t going to be easy. But, for the first time in a long time, I’m excited about my future.”

One of the topics most prevalent in All Of The Rogers is mental illness. The reality of how hard it is for people to talk about it and how it isn't so easily diagnosed, made this book all the more real. Erin touched on topics most people wouldn't dare talk about, and to me, this book will help others feel that it is ok to talk about mental illness.

“I look into his eyes, half-begging him to kiss me and half-telling him to stop cutting off communication when he’s upset. That means he will have to talk to me when he’s mad, instead of falling off the face of the earth and then pretending like nothing ever happened when he comes back up.”

The characters in All Of The Rogers are so relatable, from the awkward wall flower, to the cutest boy with the secrets, to the popular girl that will do anything for attention, Erin's descriptive writing helps us connect with each character on different levels.

“If anyone applauds, I don’t hear it. All I hear is a ringing in my ears. Suddenly, I can feel the effects of not eating or drinking all day. Instead of going back to my seat, I move to the side and push through the doors, stumbling into the hallway. My back slides against the wall, and I hug my knees, hanging my head and crying.”

I came into reading All Of The Rogers with a completely open mind, and within the first 20 pages I was hooked. As I kept reading each word tugged at my heart strings and gave me all the feels. By the end I was a mess of tears. All The Rogers is now in my top 5 favourite books! – Tara Bryant

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