Review: The Edge of Anything, Nora Shalaway Carpenter

Hi friends! It’s Nyx over there. I hope you’re all doing well. I’m writing the review today, I hope you’ll enjoy it! As always, there are no spoilers in this review

The Edge of Anything, Nora Shalaway Carpenter

Published April 2020 by Running Press Kidsgoodreads-badge-add-plus-fad3b68d35050280ea55d50f17c654b5

Len is a loner teen photographer haunted by a past that’s stagnated her work and left her terrified she’s losing her mind. Sage is a high school volleyball star desperate to find a way around her sudden medical disqualification. Both girls need college scholarships. After a chance encounter, the two develop an unlikely friendship that enables them to begin facing their inner demons.

But both Len and Sage are keeping secrets that, left hidden, could cost them everything, maybe even their lives.

Set in the North Carolina mountains, this dynamic #ownvoices novel explores grief, mental health, and the transformative power of friendship.


☂️ TRIGGER WARNINGS: click here to see them.

bullying, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, dementia, OCD, panic attacks, miscarriages, loss



  • The friendship! And all very true and real it felt. Despite their opposite personalities, Len and Sage find each other. They may not like the same things, they may not think alike, but soon they find they have much more in common that they first think. Through the story, they don’t pass any judgements, they are here for each other without any hidden agenda. They help each other through tough and dark times. I felt myself really rooting for them. The Edge of Anything is definitely a story about the transformative power of friendship.
  • The flawed and three-dimensional characters. Len and Sage felt real to me. They have amazing qualities about them but also deep flaws. I was really able to get inside their heads and get to know them and care for them. The secondary characters were also on point. They stood in the background but they brought real depth to the story.
  • It’s an authentic story about hope, identity and self-awareness. Often in books, you see “super-heroes” kind of characters like the girl who’s always saying what she’s thinking or the girl pushing through bullying all of her own. What I enjoyed in this story is that it shows that sometimes, when you’re facing hard situations you need to ask for help. To overcome tough spots, you shouldn’t be afraid to turn to someone.

  • I also adored the writing, it was full of rythmes and textures. It really made me feel! Nora Shalaway Carpenter has a real gift. The story was poignant with vivid descriptions and rich imagery. I was totally immersed.
  • This book tackles stigmas surrounding physical and mental health. And, if I may, I think the representation was on point. I could really imagine what the characters were going through. Those topics are so often forgotten, I think we need more books like this one to underline the importance of physical and mental health. It shouldn’t be taboo and the writer did a fantastic job regarding the authenticity of it all.



  • The only thing I could put here is that sometimes it’s a pretty tough read. It deals with heavy subjects – important ones, necessary ones – and you definitely need to be in the right mindset to go into this story.



If you’re looking for a poignant #ownvoices novel about grief, mental health and the power of friendship, I’d definitely recommend The Edge of Anything. It was such a heartfelt story, full of hope, with powerful characters that will, without a doubt, leave a strong and long-lasting  impact on you.

Final rating:  4 drops!

Did you read The Edge of Anything? Do you want to?

Do you have any good recommendations with mental health representation? Let me know in comments!





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29, French, Communication. Part-time blogger, books & tv shows addict, food lover, traveler. 📚📺🍣🌎

18 thoughts on “Review: The Edge of Anything, Nora Shalaway Carpenter

    1. I’m so happy my review made you want to read it! It’s such a wonderful story, I hope you’ll enjoy it as much as I did 😊 Thank you so much for stopping by 😘😘

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I had a nephew pass away at 8 month old for hypertrophic cardiomyopathy as well as having a muscle disorder!! The entire 8 months of his life had to be incredibly painful 💔 but not once did he ever cry. I was lucky enough to watch him be born and I spent every free second i had with him!! He laughed and always had a smile on his face!! Even after the surgery to put a feeding tube put in he smiled!! The oxygen tube to his nose still laughed and smiled!! Needed to be changed or feed never once did he cry!! He is one of my biggest inspirations in life!! I have an angel tattoo with his name on it as my way of keeping him close by at all times!! Its always helpful to have an angel on your shoulder!!!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m glad it was a moving reply for you. He would have been 20years old this past April. It still hurts to think about him. Every year (that I’m not working) on his birthday at the exact moment he was born most of the family gets together at the cemetery and we let balloons go in his honor. The best was the time all the balloons we let go came together into a huge Z (which is the first letter of his name) and stayed that way until we could no longer see the balloons at all.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. you and Marie always have such great recommendations, i’m definitely going to add this to my tbr now!! it’s very rare to read YA books showcasing powerful stories about friendship, but it sounds like The Edge of Anything did a wonderful job. 😄 i’m so glad that all of the characters were flawed and real and brought depth to the story as well! i’ve been on the lookout for poignant, heartfelt contemporaries, so i can’t wait to read this one! 💖

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aww, thank you! 😊 I’m so happy my review made you want to read it, it’s such a wonderful story! And if you’re looking for a poignant and heartfelt contemporary it’s the perfect fit! 💞

      Liked by 1 person

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