Parents' Guide to

Why We Broke Up

By Kate Pavao, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 15+

Moving, inventive story of first love and painful breakup.

Why We Broke Up Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 16+

Based on 2 parent reviews

age 13+

It’s a good book and u should read it 12+

I loved this book my daughter is 13 and she ordered this book online and came over to show me it it’s such a unique book I love how different it is it has pictures of items and each item has a back story it has some swearing yes but that’s pretty much it after I read some of the reviews honestly they are extremely exaggerating the sex part is barely even discussed and when I read the book I barely even noticed it’s such a good book honestly and I give it 10/10 and for the age rating I’ll give it a 12+ just because I don’t think anyone under 12 would really understand/enjoy this type of book but honestly if u haven’t read it yet u should it’s super good #proudmama

This title has:

Great messages
1 person found this helpful.
age 18+


Inappropriate. Musings of underage teenager sex. Frequent swearing & underage drinking.

This title has:

Too much sex
Too much swearing
Too much drinking/drugs/smoking

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (2 ):
Kids say (8 ):

From the same author who wrote A Series of Unfortunate Events as Lemony Snicket comes this surprisingly moving tale of first love and painful breakup. It has Handler's trademark cleverness with quick dialogue and references throughout to outrageous, invented classic films, but it convincingly captures what it feels like to really, truly fall for someone -- and obsess until nothing else in your life matters -- and also what it feels like to lose that person.

Min isn't always the most likable person, and the box of treasures she is building to return to Ed seems a bit juvenile and overdramatic -- but it's authentic. She is, after all, a dramatic girl -- and she's aware she has her share of faults ("I sweat everywhere, my arms, the way I clumsy around dropping things, my average grades and stupid interests, bad breath, pants tight in back, my neck too long or something," she writes as part of a really long list of things she loathes about herself). And readers will appreciate that Handler makes them understand why she and Ed -- who are so obviously different from each other -- would work so hard to be together, even while readers know their romance is doomed. In the end, this is a good choice for Snicket fans now grown up, as well as other romantic readers who like a good cry. And Maira Kalman's clever illustrations add to the inventive storytelling. The American Library Association named Why We Broke Up a 2012 Michael L. Printz Honor Book for excellence in literature for young adults.

Book Details

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