ARC Review, Blog Tour, Book Reviews, Giveaway

Blog Tour [REVIEW + GIVEAWAY]: Without Merit by Colleen Hoover

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without-merit-9781501170621_hrWITHOUT MERIT

Atria Books Paperback | 384 pages | ISBN: 9781501170621 | October 3, 2017 | $16.00
eBook: 384 pages | ISBN: 9781501170638 | $7.99


The Voss family is anything but normal. They live in a repurposed church, newly baptized Dollar Voss. The once cancer-stricken mother lives in the basement, the father is married to the mother’s former nurse, the little half-brother isn’t allowed to do or eat anything fun, and the eldest siblings are irritatingly perfect. Then, there’s Merit.

Merit Voss collects trophies she hasn’t earned and secrets her family forces her to keep. While browsing the local antiques shop for her next trophy, she finds Sagan. His wit and unapologetic idealism disarm and spark renewed life into her—until she discovers that he’s completely unavailable. Merit retreats deeper into herself, watching her family from the sidelines, when she learns a secret that no trophy in the world can fix.

Fed up with the lies, Merit decides to shatter the happy family illusion that she’s never been a part of before leaving them behind for good. When her escape plan fails, Merit is forced to deal with the staggering consequences of telling the truth and losing the one boy she loves.

Poignant and powerful, WITHOUT MERIT explores the layers of lies that tie a family together and the power of love.

“Not every mistake deserves a consequence. Sometimes the only thing a mistake deserves is forgiveness.”

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Colleen Hoover is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Slammed, This Girl, Point of Retreat, Hopeless, Losing Hope, Finding Cinderella, Maybe Someday, Ugly Love, Maybe Not, Confess, November 9, and It Ends with Us. She has won the Goodreads Choice Award for Best Romance twice – for Confess in 2015 and It Ends with Us in 2016. Confess was adapted into a seven-episode online series. In 2015, Colleen and her family founded The Bookworm Box, a bookstore and monthly subscription service offering signed novels donated by authors. All profits are given to various charities each month to help those in need. Colleen lives in Texas with her husband and their three boys. Please visit



I love It Ends with Us. I love Maybe Someday. I love November 9. I love so and so and so. Basically, I love all of her novels. But Without Merit is that book that spoke to me in a different kind of level. It was released at a time, the perfect kind of time, that I truly needed it the most.

In Without Merit, Hoover went back to her YA roots and touched situations that most of us are facing and battling today. Knowingly and Unknowingly.

Already saying this right here, Without Merit is way different from Colleen Hoover’s previous releases. I mean it still is a Hoover novel with her quirkiness all over it but it isn’t a couple-getting-together centric novel. It reminded me of Slammed but with a heavier tone to it, more complicated and dysfunctional family set-up. Yes, there are a lot of family stuff that the book dealt with. Also highlighted in this book are the teenage angst and emotions that were neatly channeled through Merit’s character.

I won’t dwell on talking about Merit, her family and the events that transpired in Without Merit. I want you to get to know all of them through Merit’s eyes, the same way I did. You’re surely guaranteed to know tons of things about them because Merit talks about them like 24/7. There were times wherein I got so overwhelmed with all the information Merit shared and even pissed on how she couldn’t stop talking about them. I want to know more about Merit and not that much about them. But then … things made sense later on in the book. 

I want you to take all the bombs that Hoover dropped in every page and every chapter on your own. I want you to take it all in by yourself and fully immerse in it.

What made Without Merit special, for me? Colleen Hoover wrote about depression in a way that it’s not too broad, scientific and just the plain illness labeled as depression. She wrote about it in its simplest and sneakiest form. That’s how depression is, it sneaks up on us and doesn’t need for a big moment to happen to set it off. We either deal with it early on or brush it off yet at the same time it is starting to grow and fester inside of us. Sometimes…its too late for people to do something about it or for the people around them to save them.

Just like how depression is sneaky, Without Merit has that slow build up but in actuality is carrying a powerful message enough to knock you off kilter. I love that she wrote Without Merit this way, it feels the closest to reality considering Merit’s situation and kind of thinking.

“…depression doesn’t necessarily mean a person is miserable or suicidal all the time. Indifference is also a sign of depression.” – Luck, Without Merit by Colleen Hoover

When we read books, we either put ourselves in the shoes of the main character or by chance we see something in them that reflects even just the tiny bit of ourselves.

I’m on the latter.

I may not have the exact life experiences and situations that Merit went through but I can see bits and pieces of myself in her. Merit is so real and flawed. There were times that it felt like I was reading something about myself. I’m sure people who will read Without Merit will one way or another identify with her character (or any of the characters in the book). As for me, I identify with Merit so much that it scared me to continue reading. But then, I have to know how things fared with her.

Without Merit is an eye-opener. It raises awareness about depression yet at the same time touching the readers’ hearts. Honestly, the depression check list hit me so hard. I never acknowledged that I have depression. Me? depression? Well not until I read that check list and this book. Whenever I have dark thoughts (there were a couple of moments wherein I was already eyeing for objects…), I brush it off and just go about my happy ways. Fangirling or reading books all day and all night and being indifferent with the things that are happening around me. I’m normally a happy person. In which makes me think that it really is true, sometimes the happiest people you’ll see…could also be the saddest ones you’ll come across. Not to worry, I’m starting to talk about it with the people around me. Talk about the emotions that I’ve kept inside me. Letting my thoughts and feelings out.

Last point, I’m sure you are curious if there’s romance thrown in the book. There is. But nothing to be afraid of because not one bit did Hoover use it to romanticize depression. Sagan is the perfect boy for Merit and he handled everything perfectly. 

I’m leaving you now with… Without Merit is important and definitely needs to be read by everyone. By everyone.



Win 1 of 5 signed hardcover copies of WITHOUT MERIT! Contest is open until October 30th.

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1 thought on “Blog Tour [REVIEW + GIVEAWAY]: Without Merit by Colleen Hoover”

  1. OH MY! I love this book to death. 😂 I agree with you about everything. I was a little bit disappointed with how things were revealed, the anti-climactic part with Merit. I understand that it had to do with her having a depression, but I just had a hard time accepting what she did. 😅
    Nonetheless, everything else was great. It Ends with Us and Without Merit are two of my most favorite books of Colleen Hoover. ❤️


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