Seeds of Hate by Melissa Perea
They said high school would be fun.
They said we would make forever friends.
They said we would have the time of our lives.

They lied

Chapter 14 – The Bakery (Selah)

A young woman began pushing an empty stroller back and forth two tables down
from mine. Did she forget her baby wasn’t there? An older man sat alone reading
the morning paper. Did he lose his wife? And two children ran around grabbing
at their mother, while another threw Cheerios at her face. Where was her
I continued to watch the lives of those around me.
The entrance door chimed as a man with an infant headed toward the empty
stroller. He placed the baby down and dropped a bag overloaded with toys and
diapers. The young woman stopped pushing and froze. She looked down at the
older man reading the newspaper and then back at the stroller. Her eyes closed
and then opened. The young man rubbed the stubble on his chin and his
shoulders dropped. He had dark circles around his eyes and his shirt on inside
out. They exchanged no words.
The young woman reached out to touch him, but he turned and walked away.
A drop fell from her eyes, down her chin and onto the floor.
The older man stood and embraced the young woman. She breathed heavily
and hunched inward—a jacket of disappointment covering her back. The infant
began to cry and the young woman snapped. Leaving the embrace, she picked up
the child and held it close. Grabbing the bag off the floor, she wiped at her face
and headed toward the door. The older man followed behind, pushing the
She stopped at the door and turned around. She placed a small kiss on the
man’s left cheek. “Thank you for coming, Daddy,” she said.
He rubbed her chin and smiled. “Give him time,” he replied.
The three of them proceeded out and down the street. The heavy atmosphere
following them.
Was anyone spared? Or did all life come with pain?
Once the bakery slowed, Izzy took a break and joined me.
“Anything interesting?” he asked.
“Do you think people are ever happy?” I asked.
He pushed himself back against the window and propped his legs up on the
vinyl seat. “Of course,” he said. “Plenty of people are happy.”
“Are you?” I asked.
“At the moment, no. At the moment, I’m tired.” He yawned into his fist,
leaned over the table and grabbed my coffee. “I think I’m immune. It never helps
Izzy saw things with such simplicity. I envied him.
“I saw Javier. Yesterday after school,” I said.
He took another sip of my cold, leftover coffee. I wondered if he could taste
my lip gloss.
“He must be coming back,” Izzy said. “Did he talk to you?”
“No.” I sat ripping a napkin into tiny pieces. Then grabbed another one and
ripped some more.
Izzy placed a hand over mine. “He doesn’t talk to anyone. Don’t take it
I kept ripping the paper, ignoring his statement. “Do you know Britney?”
Izzy froze and then removed his hand from on top of mine. “Everyone knows
her. Why?”
“Is that the kind of girl you want? The kind of girl guys want?”

“What do you mean by kind?” he asked.

I placed my hands out in front of my chest and cupped them. Then I pouted

my lips and flipped my hair.
“You know. Like that,” I replied.
“Guys see with their eyes,” he said and shrugged.
“So yes. I mean, you’re saying you can’t see past that?”
“Guys see with their eyes and feel with their hands. They like Britney because
she’s easy. It’s not complicated.”
My forehead dropped to the table. Bang. Bang. Bang. The napkin dispenser
and vase jiggled against the vibrations. I lifted my head and looked at my watch.
“I should go,” I said.
Izzy scooted to the edge and stood. “See you Monday?” he asked.
A disgruntled noise escaped my nose and I rubbed my forehead.
“I hear it gets better, you know,” he said.
“What?” I asked.
He offered me his hand and I stood up from the table.
I thought about mine so far. My best years all led up to my tenth birthday. I
smiled at Izzy, but it didn’t touch my eyes. Instead it sat on my face like a soggy
piece of bread—mushy and unwanted.
“Monday,” he repeated. “Fresh coffee and warm sticky buns. I promise.” His
optimism was endearing. When he walked behind the counter, he entered a world
of warmth, sweetness and comfort. And it wasn’t because of the bakery.
When I exited, I stood just outside the door and looked back through the
window. He was surrounded by family—sisters, brothers, a mother and a father.
I’d wake up at 4 AM for the rest of my life if it meant those faces would greet me.
I tapped on the glass and tried to smile.
“Monday,” I whispered. “Monday.”
“Its not healthy to miss something that’s never coming back. All you end up doing is hating your reality.”
I am no expert but I do read a lot.  At the end of the day I am just a fangirl like all the rest but one thing I know for sure is that this story is not only touching but is also AMAZINGLY written.  The thoughts and feelings expressed in this book blew me away and to know that this is Melissa’s first book makes the read that more enjoyable.  Melissa’s talent pours off the pages.  Well-crafted sentences transport you back to high school taking you back to those emotional moments from days pasted.  No matter if you were to jock, nerd, cheerleader, or even the loner we all dealt with issues in high school.  Never trust the face people show on the outside because inside they hide their deepest fears and insecurity.  People are all driven by the need to feel wanted and loved and when there is a lack of that love the feeling of lost takes over.
“I…watched the drain swallow–swallow every problem, pain, worry and fear, but they won’t fit. I could still see them. All of them. Puddling at my feet.”
Here are the facts…I am at a loss for words to describe this book and you MUST add Seeds of Hate to your TBR list.  Javi, Selah, Izzy, and Nate are screaming to be found in a sea of high school angst.  These angsts filled moments create a story that anyone can relate to and before you know you will have finished this book in one sitting.  Go and one click now!  Yes right now.  I am waiting, not so patently, for book two in the Cardboard Heart series.  Melissa Perea has proven that you can knock it out of the park on your first try!
 “I let go.” I said. And as I held her, I let it all go again. Except this time, it was better”
I get very cranky when I am tired. If getting fat wasn’t a side effect, I would eat freshly baked cookies and milk every day for breakfast. Currently, I have one kid, one husband and one dog. I plan to add more to the kids and possibly the dogs, but definitely am keeping the husband to one. If for some random reason you stumbled upon my high school yearbook you would find a picture of me under “Class Clown”. I have a college degree, but instead of earning dollar bills with my educated mind, I spend my days playing with my offspring. My life is super fun.

I write because I want to share my heart with you and make you think more about the world around you.



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