Unteachable - Leah Raeder
♥♥♥ 4.5 Forbidden Stars ♥♥♥



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"You asked why I'm here alone."

I glanced over at him. He stared right ahead.

"I see the lights every night. It seems like the whole world has figured out how to be happy, but no one's letting me in on the secret."

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Maise O'Malley has just turned eighteen. She is not the sweet-girl-next-door kind of girl. She hasn't been that for a long time. She is confident, promiscious, and alone. Her childhood was non-exitent. She has been taking care of her junkie mother and herself since she was very young. Her father abandoned them and now she has daddy issues. But all she wants is to forget for a little while. So, she sleeps with older men to accomplish it. Things change for her when she meets a man at the carnival. After, sleeping with him, he looks at her as more than just a body to get relief from, he looks at her like wants to see all of her. But she is not after anything more than just sex. When school finally starts, she is stunned to find out that the man she slept with, is her teacher.




This book was so different from your typical Teacher-Student- forbidden-love story. As soon as I started reading, I couldn't put it down.



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"How do I make you feel?"

Alive. Real. Valuable. Whole.

"Like myself," I said. "More than I've ever been."

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Maise was such a refreshing character. She isn't a normal eighteen year old girl, that's for sure. She is a loner but doesn't mind being that way. She may even appear to be a bit stuck up, but it's just a shield she uses to let no one in. I really liked her. At times she seems wiser than her age because of the things she has gone through growing up, with her mother being a prostitute and drug addict. But in the end, she was still a kid. She had also been sexually active for quite a while. She is messed up completely and definitely has "daddy issues" like she always kept mentioning. She seeks out older men to sleep with, sometimes twice or three times her senior. All she wants is to forget her reality, and sex seems to be her cure, for a while at least. I liked how she worked to make what she wanted to happen near the end and how she seemed to pick herself up when life threw her down.

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"You're so alive, Maise. You're so here, so present in the moment. You've taught me that happiness is possible now, not in some distant future. You'll scale a mountain without a second thought, face your fears, throw yourself into danger, and you're not reckless but bold, proud. You have a lion's heart. You're not afraid to live."

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Having sex with a stranger in his car at the carnival, makes her feel things she can't describe. That is because she doesn't really know what love is, or what real affection feels like. She had always just felt pleasure and was left with a kind of high after having sex. But now she feels scared by the way she is feeling after the stranger, Evan, says he doesn't want just a one night stand, he wants to get to know her. It terrifies her, so she leaves him with an excuse of using the restroom, only to see him again, when she goes to her film class. She finds out Evan, is Mr. Wilke, her teacher. Legally, they can be together because she is now eighteen, but since she is his student, they can't. I liked that she didn't act like a crazy after finding out. She acted reasonable and accepted what happened without whining about it.



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“Maise," he said, "I love you."

I love you, I thought (...) You made the world come alive for me and I love you, I love you, I love you. But it was so hard to get the air out my lungs, and then he kissed me, and I stopped trying.

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Evan Wilke was a thirty-two year old man who seemed to be caring and sincere from the moment you met him. He never blamed Maise for sleeping with him without knowing her real age. In fact, he was ready to give it all up if that's what she wanted. But Maise asked him to stay. They could no longer hold back, and so, an affair ensued. Evan was a bit of a mystery. He wanted to know Maise, but we didn't really know him. Evan was holding back and ended up keeping a very big secret from her. Evan acted way younger then his age at times. I think it's because of the trauma he suffered from his upbringing. He needed to grow up in a sense just like Maise needed too. That is why they were so good together. They brought out the good stuff out of each other and were learning together.

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"Don't be afraid," Evan said. "We're in this together, hand in hand, against the world,"

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I really liked the supporting characters. Wesley stole my heart as the guy with a big crush on Maise. He was a loner as well, and also interested in film like Maise. He became Maise's only friend. He was one of the few people who really understood and cared about Maise. They both had similar ways of seeing things but also didn't see eye to eye on many things. Wesley, like Maise and Evan, were people who were lost. They are still trying to figure out who they are, what they want, how to let go of their demons, and how to live. Maise and Evan became confused about their relationship. They both knew that because it was forbidden, it added to the excitement of being together, so they needed to figure out if what they felt was real, because soon, it would no longer be forbidden.



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"You changed my life, Mr. Wilke."

His arms tightened around me, and he whispered back, "You changed mine."

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The writing was fabulous. I can't stress that enough... Amazing! It was such a unique read but very enjoyable. It was love story but there was so much more to it. And of course, there was plenty of steam. It was really HOT! It was not a fairy-tale, but a story that depicted a forbidden relationship in a realistic manner. I wasn't sure how the ending would be like, but I ended up pleased with the conclusion. I just would have liked there to have been an epilogue, but that's just my preference. If you don't like books about taboo subjects, than this is not for you. I really loved this book. I definitely recommend you give this a read.