book review · books · Review · romance · YA · Young adult fiction

Without Merit by Colleen Hoover

The Voss family is anything but normal. They live in a repurposed church, newly baptized Dollar Voss. The once cancer-stricken mother lives in the basement, the father is married to the mother’s former nurse, the little half-brother isn’t allowed to do or eat anything fun, and the eldest siblings are irritatingly perfect. Then, there’s Merit.

Merit Voss collects trophies she hasn’t earned and secrets her family forces her to keep. While browsing the local antiques shop for her next trophy, she finds Sagan. His wit and unapologetic idealism disarm and spark renewed life into her—until she discovers that he’s completely unavailable. Merit retreats deeper into herself, watching her family from the sidelines when she learns a secret that no trophy in the world can fix.

Fed up with the lies, Merit decides to shatter the happy family illusion that she’s never been a part of before leaving them behind for good. When her escape plan fails, Merit is forced to deal with the staggering consequences of telling the truth and losing the one boy she loves.


I adore Colleen Hoover books, her writing is incredible and every book I’ve read by her has captivated me straight away, Without Merit was no different.

In the story we follow Merit, who doesn’t appear to fit  into her family very well.

The story mainly focuses on the Voss family, and not so heavily on the romance which I found very fresh, it was really nice to read a book mostly focused on the family dynamics, which were a bit…strange. 

Colleen does a great job as she slowly unravels the tangles of strife between the members of the Voss family.

In Without Merit CoHo strays from her usual writing genre which is romance, where the story mainly focuses on the romance between the main characters. 

The result of her doing so has turned into a powerful, raw and true story. 

Merit, her family and their outer circle are brilliant characters who she has portrayed so very well.

A lot of book deals with mental health, focusing around depression. These are heavy and important topics which CoHo had written so well, parts I imagine would be hard to read for some of her audience, but please stick with it, CoHo is so good at showing the light from the dark.

I admit that the first part of the story seemed so unrealistic and a bit ridiculous, but you have to read the second part of the book to fully understand the whole story, the way CoHo wrote this I’d say was close to genius, I can’t praise her books and story writing skills more. 

I absolutely loved the characters in this book, and the plot twists and secrets that kept popping up all over the place.

And of course there was some romance, I adored Sagan, he made a great book boyfriend, that I defiantly developed a little soft spot for.

I loved this book, incase you couldn’t already tell. I can’t wait for my next CoHo read! 

2 thoughts on “Without Merit by Colleen Hoover

  1. I love a book with plot twists and clever writing and this sounds exactly my kind of thing! I like that the author shows light in the dark on the subject of depression. This sounds like an interesting book, thank you for sharing your thoughts Lainy ❤ xx

    Bexa |


  2. I’ve never read anything by this author but this book sounds really good! Another fabulous review lovely!

    Jess //

    Liked by 1 person

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