I received this book for free from Merit Press, Simon Pulse in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

This book may be unsuitable for people under 14 years of age due to its use of language, mental illness, sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.
{How We Fall: Kate Brauning}How We Fall by Kate Brauning
Published by Merit Press, Simon Pulse on November 3, 2014
Genres: Mystery, Realistic Fiction, Romance, Young Adult
Pages: 304
Format: Hardcover
Source: Merit Press, Simon Pulse
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{Synopsis} – Ever since Jackie moved to her uncle's sleepy farming town, she's been flirting way too much–and with her own cousin, Marcus.

Her friendship with him has turned into something she can't control, and he's the reason Jackie lost track of her best friend, Ellie, who left for…no one knows where. Now Ellie has been missing for months, and the police, fearing the worst, are searching for her body. Swamped with guilt and the knowledge that acting on her love for Marcus would tear their families apart, Jackie pushes her cousin away. The plan is to fall out of love, and, just as she hoped he would, Marcus falls for the new girl in town. But something isn't right about this stranger, and Jackie's suspicions about the new girl's secrets only drive the wedge deeper between Jackie and Marcus–and deepens Jackie's despair.

Then Marcus is forced to pay the price for someone else's lies as the mystery around Ellie's disappearance starts to become horribly clear. Jackie has to face terrible choices. Can she leave her first love behind, and can she go on living with the fact that she failed her best friend?

{My Thoughts} –  Jackie and Marcus are first cousins, their families live together and they are the same age. They are both seventeen and they both share a very deep secret that has the potential to hurt their families and disrupt their day to day lives.

Jackie and Marcus are the oldest two that are living home still and because of that, they have a lot of responsibility. They both have to help with childcare for the younger children in the house and they both have chores and other obligations. However, everything they do works out in the end because they always seem to find some time to themselves, some alone time, some time where they can just be them and not worry about everyone or everything else.

This book begins with them working at the farmers market or something similar where they sell the produce that they grow. It references a missing person’s flier for a girl named Ellie Wallace and she apparently had been a friend of Jackie’s. According to the book they were close until she moved to a new city and then they had drifted apart. Jackie seems to blame herself for not being closer to the girl or more interested in her life and because of it she’s determined to try and figure out what happened to her in a sense.

Th book tosses and turns between Marcus and his relationship with his girlfriend Sylvia and Jackie and her relationship with a guy named Will. It also talks a lot about their families and the hidden secret. If you want to know what happened to Ellie and what the big secret is you’ll have to read the book. I will tell you although I found the subject matter difficult at times to read, that it is a well written story. I also know that although I may not agree with the subject matter, I do know that it can happen in real life and its something that I think people should be more aware of, instead of left in the dark about.

However, with that said, I am not sure this is a book I would particularly want my child two read until they are old enough to honestly understand the consequences of choices and actions. I know that you can’t always help the way things turn out, but sometimes, it helps to be able to look at them from another perspective and this book sort of helps you to look at the subject matter from another perspective.

Final Conclusion: 5 Star Rating.