Positive: A Memoir - Paige Rawl

Positive by Paige Rawl
Genre: Nonfiction/Memoir/Autobiography

Image result for positive bookBlurb (on back of book)In this compelling and compulsively readable memoir, nineteen-year-old Paige Rawl tells the story of how she was mercilessly bullied in middle school...and how she overcame the ordeal to change her world for the better.
In this astonishing memoir, Paige tells a story that is both deeply personal and completely universal—one that will resonate deeply with the thousands of children and adults whose lives have been touched by bullying.
Paige Rawl has been HIV positive since birth…but growing up
, she never felt like her illness defined her. It never prevented her from entering beauty pageants or playing soccer or making the honor role.
On an unremarkable day in middle school, while attempting to console a friend, Paige disclosed her HIV-positive status—and within hours the bullying began. She was called "PAIDS," first in whispers, then out in the open. Her soccer coach joked that she was an asset because opposing team members would be too afraid to touch her. Her guidance counselor told her to stop all the “drama,” and her principal said she couldn’t protect her. One night, desperate for escape, Paige swallowed fifteen sleeping pills—one for each year of her life to date. That could have been the end of her story. Instead, it was only the beginning.
The gripping first-person account of Paige’s life will pull in even the most reluctant readers of nonfiction, and her call to action to choose compassion over cruelty will stay with them long after they turn the last page.
 


MY OPINION: *****

This was actually a 4.75 star book in my opinion.

Overall, I really enjoyed reading this book. This was yet another one of those "forced reads" but it was really a good one. I'm also proud to say that I've read a nonfiction book this year, which is quite a lot, since I almost never read nonfiction.

This book was gripping, shocking, sad, and incredible. I can't believe how this one girl went through all of this in less than a quarter of a lifetime. It's crazy.

This book is about a girl named Paige who was born with HIV and was bullied mercilessly for it, even though it wasn't her fault. The way that those kids bullied her was terrible, but the steps that her school took to stop it was literally unforgivable. I cannot believe how incredibly evil they are to just let this go on and on and on and on.

Paige grew up thinking that taking pills and meds were normal. She thought that seeing a doctor a LOT was ordinary. Her mom didn't tell her she had HIV until sixth grade, I believe. Which is crazy, though I absolutely do not blame her mom. I like how her mom tried to keep her daughter protected and safe for as long as she could.

When Paige found out about her disease, it changed her life, but she didn't really let it get to her, until...

She told her friend about her disease.

I mean, I would never do that personally, but that's probably because I'm a very secretive and quiet person who prefers to keep things to myself. So when Paige told her friend, I just knew something bad was going to come out of it.

And something did.

Her friend told her sister who told basically everyone. After that, Paige was bullied. Harshly. She was called "PAIDS" which was stupid, since she didn't even have AIDS. Let me tell you all now: HIV and AIDS are completely different things. They are not the same disease AT ALL. Ok? Anyways, she was called a bad nickname, had ridiculously cruel notes taped to her locker, and phone calls and outright teasing. I can't believe how cruel kids have been and still are.

I've been bullied before. I'm sure that most people have. But my bullying never got to be anything close to how extreme Paige's bullying was. It was honestly shocking.

And the worst thing is, the school didn't do ANYTHING to help her. Basically, they told her to hide it, lie, pretend it was just drama, and her soccer coach said something unforgivable. Read the book to find out. Just what is this? Who does this to a CHILD? Oh yeah, other CHILDREN. CHILDREN ARE MONSTERS SOMETIMES OK??

The reason I dropped my rating down to a 4.75 stars instead of a full 5 stars was because even though I knew this was a nonfiction story, some of it just felt too fairy-tale ending for me. I know it was all true, but I just didn't like how perfect a certain part of her life was. At all. :D

You don't just go over to your crush's house and play video games and KISS with him when you're 13 years old. You just don't. Also, you don't win beauty pageants and be on magazines all the time. I know she didn't win all the time, but I'm in the exaggerating mood. 

I'm really happy that this book didn't end in suicide. Because otherwise, that would have just been too much for me. I mean, when bullying ends in suicide, it makes me feel so bad. I just wonder how those kids feel when they realize that they are basically, in the most general tense, murderers. Yeah. If you've ever been a bully, just think about the end results before you even start, ok? And if you've ever been bullied, trust me, don't suicide. It isn't worth it. Honestly, all it will do is cause guilt and pain and distress for other people. Ok?

Am I the only one who thought that that stress center sounded SO relieving and helpful? I wish they had one of those like everywhere, only I wouldn't want to be marked or bullied because of it. Ok? Just because you go to a stress center doesn't mean anything.

I loved that camp that was shown in this book! It looked really interesting!

This book was definitely a real eye-opener and was really good at showing me how this one girl did so much for herself. It's really amazing, actually. I would recommend this book to anyone. Anyone who can read and is willing to read.

I'm actually volunteering to raise money for people with HIV and/or AIDS, so... I'm glad to have some background knowledge of this already!

Main Character: Paige
Sidekick(s): Ethan, Mom, friends, Brryan, etc
Villain(s): HIV, suicide, bullying, Lila, Yasmine, etc
Nonfiction/Memoir/Autobiography Elements: This book is a nonfiction story that is written by Paige Rawl about herself.

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