The Mess of Me

‘I remember my Nana once saying everyone should have at least one good summer in their lives, one summer that they never forget. I think, this is not a bad way to start my sixteenth year. This is not a bad way to start our summer. And I give Joe a slow smile.’

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Lou Carling is 16 and obsessed with getting thinner. Joe is her best friend, and last night they found something they shouldn’t have in Joe’s older brothers wardrobe. Travis and Leon are shady figures, leading shadier lives, and during one summer Lou and Joe find themselves pulled into the drama, the confusion and the violence. Will Joe go to any lengths to impress his older brothers? Will Lou’s obsession with losing weight spiral out of control? Is Marianne, her self-harming friend, really her friend, or an enemy in disguise? And will Lou and Joe ever be more than just best friends?  A coming of age drama to be enjoyed by teens and adults alike; Lou and Joe are about to have one messy summer.

Buy The Mess of Me now at Amazon

Reviews of The Mess of Me by Chantelle Atkins:

This book was crazy good! I could totally see it being a movie. The characters were so well described and formed, and the visuals were well done. On top of that, the format and grammar is all nicely done, which is a relief to see in indie books, these days. Great job! I recommend this book! CM Adams via Goodreads

This book was gripping from the start and written in a style that really sucks you in. I loved the character of Lou and found myself thinking back to when I was her age. The story is very mature and well written. I think it signifies a real writing talent. I gave this to my 11-year-old, who has just finished the dreadful Girl Online. Although classified as YA this book wipes the floor with it and in a meritocracy would sell ten times as many copies. Utterly brilliant. Truth42 via

Want to read about real life? Give this a go. No fluff, just grit. An excellent, thought-provoking read. Megan via

A Great Read! By the most auspicious good fortune, I chanced upon this book. By better fortune, I “Looked Inside.” The rest, as they say, is history. The story is compelling: a sixteen year old girl, Lou, and her best friend, Joe, become enmeshed in a sticky web of events created by older family members with a history of dark and cruel afflictions. The characters are complex and real and gripping; all of them. Atkins is a superb writer, one who pays exquisite attention to the nuances required by the pickiest of readers. This author respects her readers, and she rewards them with honesty and unvarnished reality. Her writing moves like a mighty river where you are helpless in its flow. Although all books, like rivers, must end – and this one ends right – you simply care too much by then to let these people go. A great read by a great author!. Joel R Dennstedt via

Still looking for a taster?!

You can find unpolished chapters of The Mess of Me serialized on the blog!

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