|Wendy Lamb Books: May 27, 2014|
Despite making me want to start saying "Poppycock," and making me for the first time in my life happy that I have a brother and not a sister, I was engrossed in these pages, barely putting them down to do my chores or while I had company. I was such a bad host yesterday, and was so glad when everyone left so I could give my full attention back to Nell and figuring out if she was mentally ill or just truly, really broken.
The second-person point of view is expertly executed. It's so rare that I recommend anything in second-person because it usually feels so awkward. Not this time. The plot unfolds without a hitch, and the ending, well, in my opinion, it's perfect. It keeps the focus where the focus should be. The characters are well-developed, and the interpersonal and intrapersonal conflicts abound while the actual page count is only 197. It's the quintessential summer read. There is love, loss, quirk, and suspense. I'm so glad I picked it up!
Nell is a literature buff, so all of you out there will appreciate her point of view, even though she's not addressing you. It's like being a fly on the wall of someone else's brain. It's brilliant. It's out today. I highly suggest it.
PARENTS: The book centers on an inappropriate sexual relationship with a teacher and student, but does not glorify it. There is a sexual encounter for Nell, and underage alcohol consumption. Also there are references to neighbors who probably died from drug overdoses. However, there is no graphic sex or sex-talk inside. If anything, I think this book should encourage youth to report inappropriate relationships as they see Nell's thoughts and actions through the entire book, struggling with whether or not she should keep her sister's secret.