Sam has been living with Purely-Obsessional OCD, but only her family and therapist know about it. Even her closest friends have no idea. She doesn’t feel like she can open up to the popular girls she has associated with her whole life, but she also fears leaving the group and being ostracized. So she just tries to hide her obsessions.
At school, Sam meets Caroline, who is very different from Sam’s usual crowd. Caroline introduces her to a new group of people, who write and share poetry. It takes some time for Sam to open up to the poets, and for them to accept her, but she feels more at ease with them than with her former friends. AJ, a member of the Poets, becomes Sam’s boyfriend, despite their rocky past. Readers can easily relate to Sam’s struggles. She does not exhibit overt signs of mental illness, and is able to blend in, but doesn’t feel as though she fits in.
Normally, I can predict plot twists, but the one toward the end of Every Last Word threw me, and I am impressed with Stone’s ability to construct characters in a way that I didn’t see it coming.