Review by Booklist Review
Larissa Bogdan has spent most of her high-school career madly in love with Chase Harding, football star with a heart of gold. But Lara has always been most comfortable in the shadow of her louder, more ambitious best friends. It's not until the start of her senior year, when she arrives with a fresh haircut and a new, easy confidence, that Chase suddenly notices her for a change. It sounds like a lifelong dream come true, except for the reason for Lara's new confidence? That would be the summer she just spent in the Outer Banks with her mom, her mom's boss, and his daughter, Jasmine. What started as an intense friendship quickly developed into something more, both physically and emotionally, and though Lara has always thought of herself as straight, she's still unable to get Jasmine out of her head even now that summer's over. And when Jasmine herself transfers to Lara's high school for senior year, everything Lara ever thought she wanted is abruptly called into question. As she jumps back and forth in time between Lara's summer with Jasmine and her fall with Chase, Adler digs into one girl's exploration of her own desires. Written in Lara's dry but vulnerable voice and strung through with humor, warmth, and sensuality, this romance will speak to any reader who has ever struggled to know their own heart.
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by School Library Journal Review
Gr 9 Up--This is at first glance a light teenage romance, but readers will find more depth within its pages. Lara has always blended into her group of friends and been hyper-focused on her crush on Chase, a football star in her school. Then she and her mother spend the summer away from New York on the Outer Banks of North Carolina and Lara becomes friends with Jasmine. That friendship becomes a summer romance. Things get complicated when Jasmine shows up in New York in the fall to attend Lara's school and becomes part of her friend group. Chase, who Lara has swooned over for years, starts to notice her at the same time Jasmine appears, leading to a love triangle. The strength of this novel is Lara's discovery of herself and her sexuality. The relationship drama becomes the backdrop to Lara figuring out how to better understand who she wants to be, as opposed to simply copying the template of a cool friend. While some characters do echo typical teenage stereotypes, eclectic Jasmine is powerful and unique, and her relationship as a foil to Lara is refreshing. Lara is white and Jewish and Jasmine Syrian, Irish, and Jewish. VERDICT Readers who enjoy romance will be delightfully surprised with this book that will take them a bit deeper on the road of self-discovery through high school crushes.--April Sanders, Texas A&M Commerce, TX
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Review by Kirkus Book Review
A high schooler tries to keep her summer fling--and questions about her sexuality--a secret. After spending her summer in the Outer Banks thanks to her mom's job, petite, blond-haired Lara is back in New York and ready to take on her senior year with a fresh haircut and newfound confidence. She's finally caught the eye of her longtime unrequited crush, Chase, and as they start dating, she knows she should feel that her dreams have come true. But Lara's secret summer fling, Jasmine, has moved to town, and as Jasmine infiltrates Lara's friend group, Lara feels increasingly unmoored. Lara had only ever been attracted to boys before, but now she can't stop thinking about Jasmine and wondering what that means. If she's always dreamed about dating Chase, who would she be without that dream? And was she just "cool for the summer," or are her feelings about Jasmine something more? While some readers will be frustrated that the plot hinges on simple miscommunication and a love triangle, the thoughtful representation of a questioning teen's struggle to understand herself--and avoid labels for the time being--is sorely needed. Lara is a Jewish second-generation Russian American; Jasmine is a Jewish Syrian American, and supporting characters have a range of racial, ethnic, and sexual identities. A welcome addition to the small but growing canon of questioning queer fiction. (Fiction. 14-18) Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.