Book Analysis: ‘It Ends with Us’ will make you ‘cry for days’

Maddy Ragsdale, Staff Reporter

*Spoilers ahead*

“It Ends With Us” is a sad romance meant to display the journey of learning one’s true worth and the struggles that many women face. Many wives back in the 1950s,’ 60s and so on were expected to be the “homemakers” and have their duties as a wife. A lot of women were put in difficult situations, and the book’s main character Lily Bloom’s mother was one of these wives.

Main character Lily grew up in a difficult household. Having an abusive father, Lily had to experience many wrongdoings and obstacles, but it only made her stronger as the book progressed. She learned that she didn’t have to make the same decisions her mother did in staying with her abusive husband, which was a common trend in the 1950s and ’60s.

In the beginning of the book, I was angry with Lily’s mom for not fighting back against her abusive husband. However at the end of the story I realized there really wasn’t another option for the mother. She thought what she was doing would be best for her daughter. The mother stayed with her abusive husband to protect lily.

Lily’s first love is Atlas Corrigan, who is not your typical “dude.” Atlas is homeless, jobless and lonely, and Lily notices Atlas walking right into her backyard one day. She decides to confront him, but he explains his unusual situation which leads to Lily feeling sympathetic. She invites him to enter her backyard and eventually starts to consider him a great friend with many common interests. 

This caused me to really start liking Atlas. Lily was at such a young age being in middle school and experiencing the same feelings as he did, so I felt and understood that she would go to the one person she could escape all she was dealing with. Atlas just so happened to be stuck in a similar situation.

They end up finding each other as more than friends, however. Atlas is a 18-year-old boy, so eventually, he leaves for other opportunities. But leaving Lily meant leaving all Atlas had gotten to know as “home.” For Atlas, Lily was his every thought and wanted to be with her every second of every day.

As Lily grows older in the book, she moves to Boston, where she finds Ryle, a doctor. Lily continues to pursue her dreams while making Ryle her boyfriend. She gets used to being without Atlas, but it doesn’t stop the love and memories she had for him. 

This story will make you cry for days. I created an emotional attachment to these characters. I mourned them. This book wrecked me in the best way possible, and I thought about the ending and how much could have happened.

Lily might have never been the way she was if she didn’t end up choosing who she did. The history made it more emotional for me. Lily went through so much in her life, as I noted above. 

I think if Lily would have never found Atlas she would have still been stuck in the same awful situation her mom was. Atlas saved Lily as well as her mother by showing her how she was supposed to be treated with respect, and that abuse is never OK.