He had it all – a rich family, plenty of money, a good school and classmates and his beautiful girlfriend Caitlin. He was also popular for being one of the top athletes and students of his school.
The author Alexandra Flinn, had undertaken extensive research on the topic of batterers by taking into consideration the different counseling and anger control programs given for such people. The author had always been working with victims of domestic violence and the perpetrators of such crimes. From a literary standpoint, she took the liberty of presenting this incredibly touching story from the viewpoint of the abuser.
Alexandra Flinn focuses on the theme of violence within the framework of a love relationship shared between two teenagers, Nick and Caitlin. As the story unfolds, the author vividly explains how love had turned to violence which finally snuffed out a beautiful relationship. She also gives us a clear picture how each made use of the other to get what they needed for the moment. Nick came from an affluent family but did not experience a mother’s love. Moreover, he had a father who was violent and was never there when Nick needed him most. Therefore, Nick craved for love and affection and someone to listen to his hopes and fears. This need was satisfied in the form of his girlfriend Caitlin whom he loved a lot.
Caitlin too loved Nick but at the same time got whatever she wanted from him. Though she catered to his whims and fancies, she stood her ground whenever the need arose. As time passed, Nick gradually started acting jealous and displaying violent behavior. He badly needed to release the pressure he faced with his father on the home front and uses Caitlin in an abusive manner to get rid of his pent up feelings.
The novel opens with a court scene where his girlfriend Caitlin is seen testifying against him for slapping her. Nick had loved Caitlin for she was smart and beautiful and she loved Nick too. But all that changed after she