RIGHT NOW IS WORTH IT
Reviewed by Sheri Hoyte for Reader Views (9/19)
“Right Now is Worth It” by Thomas Corrigan is a candid, tell-it-like-it-is, coming of age novel about teens in the throes of adolescence – a time when nothing is certain, and every choice seems like a make-it-or-break-it coin toss in this thing called life.
The story follows four teens on their tenuous journeys where sometimes just surviving a day of peer pressure and social media anxiety feels like an overwhelming feat. One of the teens, Emma, just lost her older sister in a car accident. Not only does she have to deal with the grief over her sister, her abusive stepfather now focuses all his warped issues on her, while her mother looms in denial. Another teen, Shaun is shy and obsessed with his appearance. He battles overcoming his shyness, especially around Emma where everything he says comes out wrong. Jackson is the ever-popular athlete hiding behind tough guy façade, sacrificing being his authentic self to preserve his image. Sophia struggles with stereotypes as her rich girl persona isn’t indicative of how life really is at home.
Wow, this story, written by a recent high school grad, really hits all the buttons for me. The drama, the vindictiveness, the uncertainty, the fears…everything I read made me grateful I was no longer in high school, such a tumultuous time for many. Corrigan writes with such an authentic flair one can easily imagine themselves as part of the story. The dialogue, the inner workings of the characters minds – every word paints a vivid picture of the story, and the plot keeps the reader moving forward. The topics he covers are tough, from death to bullying to body shaming, popularity, parental trouble, abuse, sex, there is no glossing over any subject – Corrigan covers these issues in such a way that teens will identify with and relate.
What impresses me most about Corrigan’s characters is the depth in which he portrays them. One really gets a sense of each character – who they are and how their minds work. I love that he breaks stereotypes, for instance, it’s not one of the girls in the story that has body image issues but one of the boys. This struggle is just as real for boy as it is for girls, but it’s often downplayed, causing even deeper issues because boys are supposed to “man-up” and not show any weaknesses. Fantastic character development.
I highly recommend “Right Now is Worth It,” by Thomas Corrigan for teens and adults. It’s high-level reality-based fiction. Teens will connect with the journeys of the characters, but this is also an important book for parents to read – it truly is an eye-opening glimpse into what goes on as our young ones come of age.