REVIEW: Why We Broke Up by Daniel Handler


Title: Why We Broke Up

Author: Daniel Handler

Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

ISBN: 978-0-316-12726-4

Pages: 354

Rating: 4/5

“Why We Broke Up” is a novel that consists of the letter Min wrote to Ed after their break up, which tells us about their (Ed and Min’s) relationship, from the beginning to the end.

“But it’s December now, and the sky is bright, and it’s clear to me. I’m telling you why we broke up, Ed. I’m writing it in this letter, the whole truth of why it happened. And the truth is that I goddamn loved you so much.”


I don’t really know where to start to be honest. This book ruined me, and I say this because I found myself crying in the middle of the night, clutching my pillow life my life depended on it. And I also need to say that my love for this book is completely emotional, you won’t be able to find any rational thoughts in this review.

Ed and Min’s relationship, from the start, reminded me so much of myself and somebody else that I involuntarily found myself wanting to read more, mostly to figure out if I was we were going to end up the same way. Maybe that’s why I didn’t give up on this book the first day. If it weren’t for the fact that Ed resembled a very important person in my life, I would put this book in my “dnf” shelf.

From the start, it was clear that Ed and Min were very different people. The things they did in their free times, the way they talked to people or to each other, even the parties they went to were completely different (in the end, we can say that they were from different worlds) and being the hopeless romantic I am, I thought they would be able to overcome these differences and don’t let them come in their way as obstacles. As you can understand from the title, they didn’t last forever.

“I gave you an adventure, Ed, right in front of you but you never saw it until I showed you, and that’s why we broke up.”

Ed was an interesting character. I can’t say that I loved him because he was not the type of guy I’d ever talk to. The things he said would most likely hurt or embarrass me so even if I did talk to him, I’d eventually stop.

“Stop saying no offense,” I said, “when you say offensive things. It’s not a free pass.”

But it was obvious that he made Min happy so I tolerated him (never mind the fact that he reminded me of an important person for me).

So when they broke up, it was like a punch in the gut to me, not because I loved Min and didn’t want to see her sad but also because I thought the same would happen to me if I did what I’m too afraid to do.

Still, even though I knew from the start that they were going to break up because of a really disgusting reason, I wasn’t expecting that to be the reason.

“You are a goddamn athlete and could have caught me without breaking a sweat but, Ed, you didn’t, you weren’t there when I reached a far lost corner and stood heaving with my hands full of all I had left.”

Like I said, these were all very emotional things for me and I had my own reasons for liking this book so do not look for rational reasons.

I also loved the drawings in the book, they made the story look more real and helped me visualize the things in the box Min gave to Ed.

There were 2 things that disturbed me though, both about the writing style of the author. The first of them is that while reading the conversations between characters, I realized that the author didn’t write about their feelings (or at least Min’s, since the book is written in her point of view) and I needed to guess what they were feeling. I think the author wanted us to understand what their feelings were from the things they said but that didn’t really happen to me.

Secondly, the sentences were too long. I mean, way too long. I had to read the same sentence multiple times to understand it (I even skipped some #oops) It may be because the author wanted to create a poetic effect (or make Min look more poetic) and it was great until it became too much to handle.

This book did affect me though, in so many ways that I may now change the way I look at certaing things in my life.

Would I be able to finish the book if it weren’t for personal reasons? Probably not. Therefore, I don’t think I’m going to be able to recommend it to you if you are very specific about your taste and get bored easily.

“A girl meets a boy, Ed, and everything changes, or so she says.”

Where to Buy: Amazon // Book Depository


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