Author: Lauren Barnholdt
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Read Time: One Day
Tag Words: Contemporary fiction, high school, cheating in relationships, best friends, summer jobs, first time, being dumped, story told in flashbacks
It’s Hannah’s first day of senior year and things are already a mess.
She’s been dumped by her cheating ex-boyfriend...
She’s fallen for Noah, the boy she worked with all summer...
And she’s terrified of facing Ava, Noah’s girlfriend and her best friend...
Senior year just got a lot more complicated.
This is my second Barnholdt and I remain unimpressed. I know that I am “known” for my open, honest reviews that still value the fact that everyone likes something different, but I have to say that these books are the ones I don’t like and I feel like if I say, “But hey, maybe it’s for you!” that I will end up insulting you because of why I don’t like these kind of books.
Some call them realistic fiction, some herald them as a stand for a true look at contemporary romance, but I just see books justifying flimsy teen morals for all. I’m sorry, but when the premise of your novel is the justification of “some times it happens,” for cheating I just want to gag.
Really? That is the great, knowledgeable truth that teenage America is being fed. That cheating can be justified because, “sometimes it happens?” I’m sorry, you don’t have to share my same belief system to look at that and think, “I don’t want my kid to believe that, they’ll be able to justify a life of one night stands with that attitude!” It is really flawed, slightly cowardly thinking and not something I would want influencing my child’s views on faithfulness.
If that catch phrase weren’t enough, the novel also implied that, as long as you cheated on your other with the person you were really suppose to be with all along, that that is okay. Acceptable. Romantic, even. Does any one else see the sadness in that?
I didn’t like the writing, either, not because it was bad, but it was typical. The MC goes off on a lot of satirically narrated rants that make her appear very teenagery and relateable, but really they just got on my nerves and distracted from the plot. The characters are extreme cursers and there were so many ‘Ohmigods’ I thought I was reading a Valley Girls melodrama.
Not the book for me, not the book for anyone who doesn’t believe romance comes at the price of infidelity.
Notes on the Names:
Good names, very yupster.
There was: Hannah, Noah, Sebastian, Ava, Lacey, Jemima, Jonah, Riker.
Thoughts on the Cover:
I love the colors on this cover and the title, done in a soft rainbow.
I think the model is interesting, though a bit generic.
Parental Book Review *spoilers*
Sex between teens.
Sebastian and Noah almost get into a fist-fight
Ava slaps Hannah when it is discovered that Hannah slept with her boyfriend.
Teens doing drugs
Teens partying in a home where adults are never present
Rebound hook ups where girls make out with boys to spite their ex boyfriends
Talk about girl-on-girl action
Hannah and Sebastian do “everything but” in their physical relationship and that is how Hannah describes it.
Really, really not a clean book and on top of that the story lacks morals.