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Ugly  By  cover art

Ugly

By: Margaret McHeyzer
Narrated by: Becca Ballenger
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Publisher's Summary

If I were dead, I wouldn't be able to see. If I were dead, I wouldn't be able to feel. If I were dead, he'd never raise his hand to me again. If I were dead, his words wouldn't cut as deep as they do. If I were dead, I'd be beautiful and I wouldn't be so...ugly. 

I'm not dead...but I wish I was.

©2015 Margaret McHeyzer (P)2018 Margaret McHeyzer

What listeners say about Ugly

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Ugly

Not every book is fore everyone this just wasn't for me.
First off I absolutely loved the narration to this book; Becca has the right voice for Lily. She even made Max’s stutter perfect that I understood exactly what the author wanted us to get from it. There were times you could hear background noise or a hum but it didn’t really distract from the narration.

I am not here to dim down domestic abuse/violence in any way. But for me I found Lily’s character to not be realistic, the teachers saw her day in and day out and even one hinted that he knew what was going on at home. They have a moral right to report it. I get it is fiction but it would have been believable if the teachers had stepped in.

Quote (“No one talks to me, because, well, I’m ugly. Ugly girls don’t have friends. We simply hide away and try to blend in wherever we can, trying our best to be shadows so no one looks at us, or approaches us.”)

So much negativity is thrust on one character it felt like just too much. I wanted to root for her but there was never anything to root for in the beginning. Other than her 3.9 GPA...

Quote (“High school is almost finished for the year. What the hell am I going to do? I’m so scared. I’m so dumb, I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to get a job. Who’d want someone as stupid as me?”)

Then she meets Trent, ok things look good but she again feels like something is off, and she gets offers for full rides to college, why doesn’t she take the out? If escape is what she is looking for then why? I guess I thought the author needed to give us something to root for. This quote was from their first date…

Quote (I stand and Trent links his fingers through mine. We make our way over to the cash register where the waiter who served us is waiting for us. “How was your meal?” he asks me. “You don’t talk to her, you ask me,” Trent half shouts, pulling me behind him as he steps in front of me. “How was your meal?” The waiter asks Trent in a sarcastic tone. “Watch your
d a - n mouth. I’m a paying customer, and if you’re not nice to me and my girl, I’ll have you fired.”)

I understand she thought Trent was something better but when she had the chance to get out before anything happens with him she doesn’t. Then the abuse happens again and at this point of the story, I am kind of over it. I mean I feel horrible for her but I am just over the negativity.

Finally when the author gives us something to root for it almost felt like it was too little too late.

Max and Shayne, they are the lights in this book yes but it's not enough to counter all the negativity that has happened.
Shayne was Lily’s friend when Lily first meets Trent. I see how the author wanted to distance Shayne from Lily via Trent but I feel like it was all just a little off. Or more like Shayne just gets left out of a good chunk of the book where she could have shown how to distance Lily from her friends.

Max is the best part of this book for me, his story was real in a way I never felt like Lily’s was. I know it is fiction, but maybe we can have a little realism in it to make it not feel like a story if that makes sense.
Max’s patience is something I love, he just gets her. He treats Lily like she is precious just like Shayne and Liam do. They lift her up and show her that she is worthy. I wished there was something more to root for at the beginning of this book because for me it was just too many negatives.

Seriously if it wasn’t for the narrator I probably wouldn’t have made it to the end. I was ready to give up when Trent told her where to go for college.

This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review.

8 people found this helpful

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Great, and real tear jerker.

and I enjoyed the book it was a real tear-jerker, I just wish it had more about the mother-in-law. And what happened to her. and to his father.

6 people found this helpful

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wholly cow! its a great book!

I dont even know where to start with this book.
It jumps right in, so hold on to your seats. I cant believe how good this book is. I haven't heard a book this good for a long time, and I listen to about 3 books a week.
I am in love with Lilly, so many times I just wanted to give her hug. She is so strong, and what she has gone through.. I am speechless.
This is my first time listening to anything from Margaret McHeyzer. if all her books are this good, I just found my favorite writer. I have already added more of her books to my wish list.

Becca did an amazing job, and I would happily listen to her again.
I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

5 people found this helpful

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Deep emotional book!

People need to realize that abuse will always haunt us. Lily has been put through hell basically her whole life. With a glimpse of hope Lily’s life comes tumbling down over and over. Until Max a guy who himself deals with haters and had to watch what happens to Lily in his family. This is a very emotional book to me because I was Lily. It’s almost like my story and I felt all the words deeply. I’m a survivor and I have my own Max myself. And like Lily we are loved and deserve it! The narrator brought the story to life I truly loved it! 5/5 stars

4 people found this helpful

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So Many Emotions......

Very few books have moved me the way that this one did. I literally was crying for Lilly and praying that her situation would change, both with her dad and then later Trent. I could feel rage filling up in me at out Trent treated her like a dog...no, worse than a dog and was so proud of her when she got the courage to leave that situation...same courage that it took to leave her dad's home, while still a kid in high school.

I loved the 2nd half of the book and it looks as though Lilly's life did a 180 after she met Max....he truly saw the best in her and encouraged her to be the woman he knew she was deep down. True gentleman!!

Margaret McHeyzer HAS to do a book 2 on this....we HAVE to know more of this next chapter.

Becca Ballenger did an AMAZZZZZZZING job narrating this! Fantastic work!




This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review courtesy of AudiobookBoom

3 people found this helpful

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Hard Story to hear

One of the hardest audio books for me to ever get thru. I sobbed, I cried, it made me so angry. So very well written! It's not a straight thru listen but well worth the time. "I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review."

3 people found this helpful

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WOW

I loved this book. It will take you on an emotional rollercoaster without seatbelts. This is a must read!

The narrator was fantastic, you can tell she loves what she does.

I received this audible free at my request and am thrilled to leave my review.

3 people found this helpful

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Tough subject, good story

Ooh, this story! I almost gave up on it, not because of the writing but because the subject matter was so heartbreaking.
I am glad I didn’t give up though. I don’t have a personal experience with DV myself so I can’t relate but sometimes in stories I wonder why the heck people stay. I think I understood why in the way this story was told. Heartbreaking. So glad she got her hea.
I was provided a copy of this book at no charge and asked to leave an unbiased review if I was able to.
Great narration as well. I’ll look for more stories from this narrator.

3 people found this helpful

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Tough, tough, tough listen

I have to confess that there were many, many, many times during this listen that I just wanted to stop listening. The story was just too heartbreaking. In every sense of the word, Lily was just so pitiful. The constant need and want for approval from her father, and his desire to destroy her at all cost, just brought me to tears.

I celebrated when Lily met Trent. Then that happened.

If you can get past the first half this read, of Lily's life, there is some relief. I have to admit though that there were a few times when I just put the listen down and started watching a cartoon.

The narration was excellent. Excellent! I would love to wax more poetic about Ballenger's performance but I need to go outside and feel the sun on my face.

2 people found this helpful

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WOW, JUST WOW!

For anyone who has gone through abuse, this is a difficult book. The author truly captured the feeling of worthlessness and hopelessness that comes from abuse as well as the happiness that comes from just a little bit of hope. This was heartbreaking to listen to. It starts right in without sugar coating anything. You know what to expect right from the beginning. Lilly's abuse is horrible but the strength she has is also amazing. I loved this character! This was an excellent book with a super narrator. Becca Ballenger brought the pain through as well as the hope and happiness Lilly was feeling. When Becca expressed Lilly's happiness, it really made me smile! I was voluntarily provided this review copy audiobook at no charge by the author, publisher and/or narrator.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Danielle Tunaley
  • 10-02-22

Brilliant

loved this book so much the narrator is excellent the story line keeps you hooked from stort to finish would recommend to family and friends 😀

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  • Mrs S Evans
  • 08-05-22

Good story

1st time listening to this author and won't be the last. really enjoyed this book.

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  • V_Nerdbooks
  • 10-16-19

Hard Hitting subject

This is a really difficult book to review, on one hand I loved it, on the other, not so much.

Lilly's home life is horrific, it used to be wonderful with loving parents, but something happened to change all of that, and now living with just her alcoholic father, he has taken to abusing her, mentally and physically.

He hits her and calls her names like Fat, Ugly, Stupid, and he beats her often, and after being called these names for so long, she has become used to them and believes them.

Lilly manages to escape her fathers abusive ways. but then seems to fall from one abusive relationship to another.

I liked the way that the abuse was portrayed as not *just* being physical but mental as well, sometimes you can't see the bruises, but they do the same, if not more damage, and that stays with you forever.

What I didn't like so much was the way that Lilly ended up just falling into everything, and then being the best at it, best grades at school, all of the Universities were begging for her, she tried her hand at proof reading, and then suddenly every book she'd ever touched made it to the NYC Best Sellers list and Publishing Houses were fighting to get her.

I just think things are not always tied up with a nice little bow, I understand that the author wanted to see Lilly finally happy and at peace, but maybe it was a little bit to sugary sweet for me.

However, don't just take my opinion into consideration, many people absolutely loved this book, so it maybe just me, maybe I've been reading too many thrillers recently and it's made me wanting a big 'twist' to the story.

Narrated by Becca Ballenger, a new narrator for me, who did a great job

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  • Toni walker
  • 09-05-19

😢

I’ve never cried over a book before but this got me tears please have your tissues at the ready your story that was sad but very well written and narrated was really good this was a first from this writer but will not be the last

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  • Cindy
  • 08-28-19

A rollercoaster of emotions!

I don't believe this is a true story but it felt so realistic and believable. I hate to say I loved this book, because it is heartbreaking and emotional, but stories like this help me to understand what a victim of domestic violence goes through and how they fear for their life on a regular basis and how just leaving an abusive situation isn't as easy as it sounds. This is my second Margaret McHeyzer book and both are highly recommended. I just wish she had more books out on audio. Becca Ballenger did an outstanding job bringing this story to life. She put so much emotion into all the characters, and her portrayal of Max and his stuttering was really well done. I received this audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this unbiased review.

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  • Tish smith
  • 08-16-19

Heartbreaking

This book, my title says it all. Utterly heartbreaking. The emotions provoked while listening *feels all the feels*
Narration perfect for lily
Worth the read or listen or both🙈

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  • K1burger
  • 08-12-19

lived up to it's name

This book was called ugly and it insinuated you would cry the ugly tears. Well that's true I cried a couple of times whilst reading this book. This author was new to me but I'm so glad I gave this book a try as I really enjoyed the story. Becca did an amazing job of the narration totally making you feel right along with the character.

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  • Clare Keating
  • 09-10-18

emotional listen

I received this title for free in exchange for an unbiased review.

This was a hard listen had me in tears a few times but I am so glad I got the chance to listen as I have come across it a few times when looking for a new listen. Becca Ballenger did a great job I love how she told the story she made it come to life. A great story well worth a listen.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Martine
  • 08-21-18

Not for the sensitive

I really loved this book, brought up so many realistic issues and a fact that is in so many peoples back yard.

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  • Maylena
  • 08-14-18

Grab your tissues.

I have read the hard copy of this book and thought it was great so decided to give it a listen. Omg be prepared for ugly snotty crying with loads of tears. I so badly wanted to shake the living hell out of Trent and give him a taste of his own medicine. Lily I just wanted to hug and love and tell her to leave as she was so worthy of more. Max and Shane I also fell in love with them. This story really pulls you into the heartache of domestic violence in all its ugliness. Once again a well written story from Margaret and a great audiobook by Becca.